Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Noelle or Noel

Big Girl.
Doesn’t matter Noel will answer to any of those names. Her way.

Gregg had gotten a call around the holidays from Laurel, a friend who had rescued a cat from an alley in Flushing after trying for a long time. The cat, which had seemed friendly, had not only resisted integrating with Laurel's other cats but was now terrorizing them. Thinking it a personality difference, Laurel regifted the cat to another rescuer, who encountered the same problems, and the chain of pass-alongs continued. When the cat came to Gregg, giver of Last Hopes, there had been 5 homes in three weeks. We needed some pictures for a flyer to find her a real home where our contentious girl could live a happy life. Carol & I went over to Gregg’s, camera in hand, prepared to keep our cautious distance.

Noelle (well, it was the holidays and she needed a name) had been confined to a bedroom by herself. Gregg’s cats are a diverse social group of independent thinkers. New cat Noelle needed a space of her own to calm down and get used to the idea of living indoors, eating regular and not fighting for her food, litter space and sleeping perch with an alley of other ferals. So far, the privacy thing was working.

Carol went in to sit with Noelle while Gregg & I worked up a flyer. When I went in to the bedroom later, Carol & Noelle had bonded. Noelle was purring, kneading her paws and lifting her legs up like a Clydesdale show horse. No sign of fear, or hostility, or any other kind of unhappy behavior. Carol was smitten, and said we should bring her home with us. That cold night, we bundled up our new cat and gave her a space of her own at our place. In the quiet of our bedroom, Noelle ate heartily and slept the next 12 hours, till she awoke and ate well again. Followed by another 12 hour nap, followed by a big meal, then 12 hours sleep, a big meal, 12 hours sleep, and on and on. Along the way, she became Noel. Silent letters don’t fare well in our noisy household. A few days later, our first visit to the Animal Medical Center brought very distressing news. Noel was extremely sick.

Noie had an enlarged spleen and liver (she may have eaten rat poison at some time), severe sinusitis related to her herpes simplex infection, a urinary infection, a upper respiratory infection, possible hyperthyroidism, 2 or possibly 3 types of ear fungus and mites, fungus infestations in her claws, bad teeth and gingivitis, poor vision, worms of every type, impacted anal glands, a arthritic spine and her immune system was wrecked. In short she was a street cat who had outlived 8 of her lives.

We expect these sorts of problems from our rescues. Almost all our cats are in bad shape when they come off the streets. Rarely, though, do we see this many conditions piled onto one cat.

Gregg spends a lot of time and and her own money to take care of the health problems of our rescues so our cats are healthy for adoption. Vet bills run up to 5 figures each year, and food and litter costs just keep marching on.

All Sentient Beings is an effort to expand this care-giving and betterment of these poor creatures lives. Many of us already have our homes filled with cats and people. Others cannot keep animals because of life situations. However, by supporting All Sentient Beings, we can bring better lives and love to our companion animals. It’s better to do something then to turn our backs.

But back to Noel. She insists.

Noels medical rehabilitation began immediately. Hospitalization, long drug regimens, twice a day ear cleanings for 7 months (I never bled so much in my life), Pills, pills, pills (never got bit so much in my life), subcutaneous fluids, separate litter box monitoring (Let’s see. Blood, worms, density, color, firmness. Ugg!). 8 teeth come out in almost two hours of anesthesia. Lots and lots of TLC, all paid back in spades from Noie’s big heart. Everything eventually clears up or becomes easily manageable. We know we have succeeded when, after a year and a half, Noie no longer sleeps 22 hours a day. When we first brought Noel to the Animal Medical Center her best-guess age estimation was, oh, 8 years old. At a visit back to AMC 18 months later, the vets’ consensus of her age was now, oh, 4 years old. Perhaps less. That’s life on the street. A cat in Noel’s condition, almost dead on the street from the cruel life of an abandoned cat, a lucky rescue at the age of two and a half.

Noel still needs to be an only cat. The fact that she lives bloodlessly in a 5 cat household (all rescues) is a tribute to her common sense and a lot of personality management. The other cats walk by in awe of her Tough Cat Attitude, hair-trigger howl and ability to commandeer a sleeping spot. She’s super affectionate to Carol and me, tolerates human guests with great charm and dignity, and wears her happiness on her face all day long. We love her, she loves us, and everybody else leaves her alone. Who could ask for more?

Thank you to Gregg, cat rescuers and to all of you who support All Sentient Beings through your contributions and adoptions.

Happy Holidays.
Bill Bloxham

Carlo the cat

Carlo was a much loved pet until his owner got evicted. They both ended up in - separate - shelters. The animal shelter where Carlo got into - euthanizes its residents due to overcrowding. We fell in love with Carlo and pulled him from the death row and are looking for home for him.
Carlo is a beautiful and sweet cat. He gives enthusiastic headbutts, hugs and nose kisses; he is affectionate, playful and a great purrer. He is very well behaved, knows what the litter box is for, to retract claws during play.
Please consider adopting Carlo. He is healthy, neutered, vaccinated, 2 years old and supersweet.
If you want to meet Carlo, please call 347 563-2843

Senior Pets Site
The senior pets site and newsletter are dedicated to finding loving homes for senior dogs and cats. Many of these pets have had an owner pass away, or the owner was evicted or lost their home. The web site posts older dogs and cats as well as disabled pets who need new homes! Please visit regularly as new dogs and cats are posted every week and read the newsletter which comes out 4 times a year!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Helping with AnimalLoversNetwork with free kibble

Free Kibbles can be donated to dogs and cats by clicking on Free Kibble and then don't forget to click on the little games -right or wrong answers, don't matter- they still donate some kibble daily. AND if you click on the reminder, they'll send you a daily reminder to click on. It's as easy as ...kibble! How neat is that?!
Click on this link to go there:

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Annual Fund

All Sentient Beings, Inc. invites you to contribute to its first Annual Fund. As an information clearinghouse and animal rescue/adoption non-profit organization, we offer people and animals the help needed to live together in a holistic and healthy way. Your fully-deductible contribution will allow these homeless animals the chance for a new, safe and happy life, as well as educating the Caregivers about Pet Trusts, Advance Directives and good nutrition. We are listed with Pay Pal or you can call All Sentient Beings' voice-mail for further information: 212-642-8219

Mitchell and Norman need your help!

Two lovely, healthy, neutered male cats have been in foster care since their Person passed away. Now the foster family is leaving the country and they are in need of a Patient, Caring, Forever person or two, since they do not have to be adopted together.
They can be seen in New York City by calling 212-642-8219, the voice mail of our organization:
All Sentient Beings,Inc.

Stay tuned!

Monday, December 8, 2008

More Meows & Meanderings

FOSTERING a rescue animal is a life-saving task, and one that appeals on many levels. If people are unsure as to whether they are ready, financially or physically able to adopt a pet, then fostering can be a great solution. It's kind of like having your grandchildren over, knowing they're going home eventually!

The real issue here, of course, is that the home must be as pet-proof as if you were adopting. Tightly-fitted screens, no dangerous objects underfoot or where an animal can get at them, a commitment to good quality food and litter. The ability to clean litter boxes regularly (or walk a dog, obviously, but I'll concern myself here mainly with indoor cats). Careful when opening/closing outside doors, non-smoking homes, no oil paint or toxic chemicals in the home (artists: beware!), a good vet on file and a strong carry-case at hand, a quiet, calm home environment. In our organization's case, at least a commitment to holistic care, from vets to food quality.

For some foster situations, food & litter are provided by the animal rescue organization. In other cases, the foster family takes on that responsibility.
Usually, it's best to stipulate the conditions before taking on the challenge of a new pet. Are there other pets in residence? Children? Are people home during the day or is the animal all alone for much of its day/evening? Have the fosters done this before or do they need to be walked through the process? How long is the fostering for? Again, it's best to spell this out. Does their building allow pets?!

What I try to do is be honest: we will try to find a permanent home for Fluffy and hope to do so by.....If the foster says, no worries, take your time, that's great. Often, however, they have time constraints so we have to hustle. Sometimes it takes more than one foster home until the pet has the right loving, caring forever home.

I welcome comments, questions and discussion on this very important aspect of cat adoption. Please write in with your points of view, stories, concerns. Thanks!