January 24th is Change a Pet’s Life Day, which started in 2009 to raise awareness about homeless and unwanted pets and to spread the word about animal adoption.
In celebration of this day, I’ve invited a few of my cat blogging friends to share their stories about how they’ve made a difference and changed a pet’s life forever.
Our Story – Charlie & Me
If you’re a regular reader of the Pawesome Cats blog you probably know that in December 2011 I fostered (and later adopted) three siblings — Charlie was one of them. When he contracted calici-virus at 4 months of age, the vet told me she wasn’t sure he’d make it through the night. The next morning, when we returned to the clinic she commended me on my nursing skills (which included cold packs around his body to lower his raging temperature and hourly fluids via syringe) — he’s a survivor! In early adulthood, Charlie developed severe food intolerances and IBD, resulting in explosive and stinky episodes of diarrhoea. Someone else might have given up on him, but not me. I have done extensive research, and everything I can to get him well and keep him that way – including transitioning to a premium quality homemade raw diet. Today, Charlie eats better than me with a balanced diet than includes duck, pork, kangaroo, turkey and quail. There is nothing I wouldn’t do for my boy!
Jeanne Kudich from Random Felines
Back in 2013 mom went to work like normal. However, when she got there, a tiny black and white cat was sitting under a bush. Thankfully mom tends to be prepared, so she grabbed up the cat, put her in the carrier that is normally in the car and called the rescue vet. She got her right in. The poor little girl was definitely an adult and weighed 4 pounds!! Normally we foster kittens, so we knew this was going to be a different experience. She spent several months with us….gaining weight and confidence. We discovered that she had food allergies and had to be put on a special grain free diet to avoid scratching herself like crazy. And through it all, she was super sweet and kind and loving. Mom says we will never know where she came from….but considering her condition, it must have been awful. But it had to have been fate to mysteriously appear at the doorstep of an office where a cat rescue lady worked. After several month, Licorice was able to be spayed and she was adopted by a nice family with a teenage girl who loved her very much.
Connie Smith from Tails from the Foster Kittens
I have been changing the lives of cats for 14 years now. It had started before that when I read an article about fostering and asked the shelter I volunteered at if they did such a thing. At the time they didn’t, but as soon as they started up a program I was on board, in fact I was one of the first people, outside of staff, to foster. Three years ago I was asked by the shelter if I might want to foster a particular kitten. I am not one to shy away from a challenge so I assumed there was something wrong. It was the way they asked that really got me; ‘Do you want her, she has no eyes and no one wants her’. I could not refuse. I took her home that day and realized she was actually older than they originally thought. I cared for her, and loved her and she taught me so much about caring for a blind kitty. I also networked the daylights out of her hoping to find a home amongst my online friends. I was so fortunate when Amy Jo Hanna Eckenrode decided she could not live without her and made the 10 hour drive up from PA to adopt her. Odilia went from the kitten no one wanted to a cat who is loved and adored and who has her own Facebook page!
Christina McNeair from Peace, Love & Whiskers
Trixie was taken in as a foster, she had no fur on her neck or butt and it was thought that she had a gluten allergy. After letting her get settled in, I realized that her head wobbled and she was having problems jumping up and couldn’t follow the laser pointer. So I took her to my vet and he not only found out she has a severe flea allergy but she had some type of bacteria in her brain that would have caused her to be put down if I hadn’t noticed her head wobble. Now she is a beautiful little girl who loves to snuggle and cuddle, she will chase the laser and play with other toys and she is an overall wonderful cat. She is my foster failure and I couldn’t be happier to make a difference in her life as I know she made a difference in mine.
Dawn White from Lola The Rescued Cat
My boyfriend, Will, had noticed a stray cat wandering around his work yard. After a week of not seeing him, the cat all of a sudden showed up looking much thinner. Will rushed home to get a carrier and sped back to the yard, praying the whole time the cat was still there. Well, the cat must have known that Will was his savior, because he was there waiting and walked right into the carrier. Although he said he didn’t really want a pet because he was still mourning the loss of his best friend, Tiger, four months earlier, once he found out the cat was not microchipped Will immediately said he’d keep him. We named him Jack and he opened up Will’s heart to loving a cat again, filling the void left by Tiger. He quickly became adjusted to his home and his new dad, and became very comfortable always being by his side. Will’s house was once again a home and the feeling of emptiness disappeared. Jack will never again have to worry about being in the street, suffering from anemia from lack of food and flea bites. I would say they both hit the “jack”pot.
Marjorie Dawson from Dash Kitten
This is Harvey. He arrived at the rescue having been dumped, and there was also some kind of hoarding incident in a local suburb. He was a real mess – head and shoulders covered in nervous eczema, and he was timid. I knew immediately he was coming home with me (as a foster). He fitted in brilliantly after initial nerves, no-one hissed at him, Dash accepted him, the resident cats flowed around him like the beautifully raked gravel you see in a peaceful Japanese garden. It’s taken nearly two years to convince Harvey that he can be as fussy about his food as everyone else, and that cuddling with me at night is the best part of the day. He still has bouts of nervousness and has lost the tips of his ears (neglected white cat – cancer on ear tips) but the wonderful thing is he took it all in his stride with complete trust that he was coming back to us and was coming home.