The Quadra Feral Cat Group was contacted by a resident of Quathiaski Cove who said he had found a small kitten in his chicken coop on Ferry road. The kitten was trying to snuggle up with the chickens to keep warm. The man had been keeping the kitten in his bathtub and hoped we could help him because he was going out of town. We got the kitten into temporary foster care for close to a week where it was dewormed and given a bath. The kitten was about 7 weeks of age and so friendly and sweet so we tried to find it a home. Thankfully a contact of one of our volunteers offered to provide the kitten with a good home.
Beeps was adopted to a family in Campbell River. He likes to follow Maxine, the older cat around and they sleep and snuggle together. We recieved the following note from his family:
"These are recent pictures of Beep’s (I have nicknamed him Chicklet, because of his background). Here he is with his buddy Maxine, she is about 11, Beep’s keeps her young as he chases her around the house."
About a year and a half ago we were trying to trap feral cats at a property in Heriot Bay. A small long-haired cat had appeared over that very cold winter and was trying hard to compete with the old-timer ferals for food. Scruffy - he had been named that because of his long fur that was all dirty and matted - seemed less afraid of people than the others – he would come forward meowing pitifully, but then, obviously conflicted, would retreat nervously. So it seemed that he might have spent the early part of his life with people and was only semi-feral.
When the time came to try and trap him he went right into the trap to get at the bait food without any fuss. He was neutered the next day and had his mats shaved off and the vet estimated he was about 10 months old.
We brought him home to recover for the night and since it seemed that he had the potential to become a pet we decided to adopt him, expecting it would take weeks or months to tame him. For
the first few days he was kept in a large cage while we kept an eye on him and our other cats and dogs to see if they could get along together.
Well, Scruffy, although afraid of us, seemed to love our other cats! When we let him loose in the house the first few times he’d disappear and hide for hours. But it turned out that all we had to do to find him was go around the house with one of our other cats in our arms – they would meow and talk away happily – and the sound would lure Scruffy out. He would come out to us and let us pick him up as long as we had one of our other cats with us to break the ice. I guess their calm demeanor gave him confidence.
And very soon he became a relaxed member of the household, sleeping in a heap with our other cats, sometimes even on top of them, by the woodstove. And eventually cuddling up with the dogs and later with us.
Photo gallery: Click on images to enlarge
The Quadra Feral Cat Group received a call in October of 2009 from a Campbell River woman who had trapped some kittens in her yard and didn't know what to do with them. One had already been euthanized so we wanted to help the remaining two. Thankfully we were able to find a foster home that night for them in Campbell River with a wonderful person named Kelly.
These two kittens were so beautiful and stayed with Kelly until the first one was adopted by her neighbour within a few days. The remaining kitten, Scruntchin, stayed with her for a few more weeks and then was transferred to another foster home here on Quadra in November, 2009.
On November 13th Scruntchin was adopted by a loving family in Vancouver (the sister of a Quadra resident!). We are so pleased that he has a good and safe home and we are so happy to report that he is doing very well and fits right in.
His new family was kind enough to pass on the following update on Valentino (his new name)
"Valentino continues to thrive, leap, beat the living you know what out of Heidi (the dog) and have a great life living with us. He and Heidi are truly in love. They start out each night in Heidi's canvas kennel (door left open) and play for about 15 to 20 minutes before I go to bed. Valentino starts in various places, often on my bed, but when I wake up each morning, they are snuggled together on a blanket on the other side of my bed from me. Soooo cute. As soon as I touch Valentino, the purring begins.
He is also truly in love with my 15year old daughter. He watches her get ready for school each morning and sits with her when she is doing her homework on the
computer. He follows her around the house like a little puppy.
I will keep you updated.
BACON'S STORY by Mike Windrim
Last summer we had to put our dog down because of illness. She was very well trained and a consummate family dog and will be next to impossible to replace as she effectively kept the deer, bears, wolves and even cougars successfully at bay. We have not yet been willing to try. Since then, because of where we live, we have been over-run by the (primarily wild) mammals which inhabit this island.
Some weeks ago, I noticed a cat around the house and in the garden at dawn when no one was up but me. This cat was obviously feral as I saw it with birds, squirrels and mice in its jaws at different times. At one point, I entered the garden while it was there and it threw itself repeatedly at the fence while trying to escape, much like a deer with a dog on its heels. It was very wild.
After a call to Lara at the Quadra Feral Cat Group, it was arranged to have a live trap delivered. While waiting, I noticed the cat lurking in the hydrangeas near the front door and decided if I could sweet talk it into the house I could call and have it picked up right away. Imagine my surprise when it warily approached and came sneaking into my front hall. I reached down after closing the door and stroked its cheek. Since that moment, this cat has taken to me like white on rice.
It obviously survived the winter outdoors. Distant neighbors report it sneaking food from dog dishes. Huge sections of fur on its sides and back were densely matted. It seemed clear eyed and vigorous but weighed only a few kilograms. There was no extra muscle on its bony frame. It was just like me, but catty.
I am living with a rare cancer and on daily chemo. This means I live in our cottage because I require some isolation from others. I do not know why this cat has taken to me so completely, but maybe it is because we are both survivors. I was discussing how he managed to make it through the winter on a part of the island where we see wolves, bears and cougars on a fairly regular basis, sometimes right on my deck. I was telling him he was just breakfast, as were most unattended dogs and cats in our neighborhood. Bacon and eggs don’t ya know. When I said “bacon” his ears perked my way and it was then that he became “Bacon” and also became MY cat.
The first couple of days he allowed me to tease all the matted fur off him. I had no brush so I just gently worked each matt and every snag out by hand and Bacon would lie patiently and quietly until I was finished. There was really nothing I could not do if I was careful and gentle. He took to sleeping so that some part of him was always in contact with me.
A call to Tammy Hagen had food, brushes and litter donated. Amazing. The litter and litter box were eventually returned. Bacon and I have an understanding. He tells me when he needs out and if the door is not open “just a crack” as it is most of the day, I will let him out. So far, so good. Bacon comes when I call him and he stays nearby if I am out enjoying the sun and the fresh air on the deck.
Lara took him to town for the “feral makeover” and he came back the next day dewormed, with all his shots and neither of his gonads. He was gooned for a day or so and concerned about closed doors for another few (he was kept in while his pupils were dilated) but he is now more of a suck than ever.
He is still a bit spooked by my wife and children but getting better every day. Eventually he may stop streaking for the space under my bed when the door opens.
Bacon is a fine animal with a great personality and I could not give him up for the world. Just think, three weeks ago I was thinking of secretly shooting him because he was a danger to my baby robins. Well, food and love fixed that. Males, huh. Go figure….
Without the help of Lara and Tammy, I would not have the unintended company and unexpected pleasure of this wonderful animal and I cannot thank them enough. What a ray of sunshine this has brought
to my life.
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Quadra Cat Rescue
P.O. Box 192
Heriot Bay, BC