4/22/08

Cat Trapper Update!

>>Visit Strayer's Cat Eye's Blog on the sidebar. below is the latest news from her on the cat fixing front. don't forget..anything purchased through Recycled Gardens http://poppainc.org/ go directly to the cat spay/neuter fund!! Keep up the great work!<<

The last week of March, first week of April, I traveled with the Neuterscooter (http://www.neuterscooter.com/) to Eugene and then to Eastern Oregon, after a clinic in Corvallis. Although the work was exhausting, the Neuterscooter crew fixed almost 800 Oregon cats in their short visit here, including almost 400 in four clinics in Pendleton and Milton Freewater. Those were long days! The Pendleton group had said they would have 100 feral cats waiting. We didn't believe them. We should have. The empty building at the Pendleton airport was chock full of cats when we arrived. The room was lined in cages full of cats. Hats off to those unbelievable volunteers.

The trip exhausted me. I got sick. My back and knee spasmed in pain for a week. It was worth it. Thanks to Jeff who looked after my cats while I was away.

Shortly thereafter, I lost my own two beloved cats, Moby and Hopi. I'd had each of them almost ten years. Moby, a ghandi type cat, who adored kittens, died of renal failure. He was very old, somewhere over 15. Hopi, my first cat, whom I found under the bypass bridge on the east bank of the Willamette River, died of metastasized lymphoma four days later. She'd been sick for a year. I am still reeling in grief over these losses.

Nonetheless, the week of April 7 to 11, I took in 30 cats to be fixed. 16 of them were from a barn in Millersburg. One of these barn cats, Sunny, is a very tame orange tabby male, whom I hope to find a home, although he is now back at the barn. Two gray tux kittens, Bessy and Benny, went to an Albany home, from the barn, after they were fixed.

The week of the 14th, through the 19th of April, I took in 24 more cats to be fixed. Many of these were tame owned Albany cats. The City of Albany granted Poppa Inc. $10,000 specifically for fixing Albany cats. This will be of great help. I took in six cats from one Albany household to be fixed, all females but one. I got every cat fixed last week from one small Albany low income complex, on 12th street. I got the last unfixed cat fixed from a household that included 8 cats in Albany, on 6th street. The first 7 had been fixed using Poppa funds. The last fix was paid for by the cat grant. And I took in the last female, a shy Siamese, from a Front Street, Albany location. I'd already taken in 8 cats for fixing on Poppa funds in the last weeks from there.

Last week also saw the last unfixed cat in the Tattoo Prairie colony spayed. She is a black long hair female, with a very badly bulging infected dead eye,that needs to be removed. I hope to make an appointment for eye removal tomorrow, for her at Countryside. I have the gift card fund, at Countryside, and money in it, donated by a very kind Sublimity woman. The colony caretaker said this young cat was in a horrible fight with something six months ago. She has suffered ever since with that bad eye. The male cats ignored her suffering. She was pregnant at spay Friday. I hope to get her that operation immediately, so her pain can finally end.

The Red Linda colony too is now under control. I took in 21 cats for spay/neuter and the caretaker took in two more, the last being a pregnant female. This leaves two cats there who need to be caught and fixed and the caretaker is determined to get that done. Five cats from the colony have gone on to get homes.

Hate Thy Neighbor colony in Albany is also now fully fixed. Until, of course, the next cat is dumped in that neighborhood. This is an extremely common occurrence there.

I have been back at Millersburg Country colony. More cats roamed in when nearby goat farmers moved and left 22 unfixed cats behind. So far, nine of those have been fixed and three of the unfixed ones have been killed on the road.

Yet to get in to be fixed---8 kittens and two females in Lebanon. KATA had referred me to a Lebanon woman seeking help getting all her cats fixed. But the morning I arrived to pick up the cats to take them to the vet, one female had kittens the night before. Nonetheless, seven other cats were fixed. Then a neighbor moved and left her calico behind, with her just born kittens, six of them. So this woman took them in also. Both females and the 8 kittens will be fixed within the next few weeks. The woman then will attempt to adopt out the kittens.

I have returned to Heatherdale Trailer park on Airport Road in Albany to round up unfixed cats once again. Two or three years ago, I took over 90 cats from that trailer park in for fixing and rehomed over 16. Comet, still here with me, is one of those kittens I netted in that park. Trailer 52, the problem trailer back then, was drug busted in the last year or two, tenants told me yesterday, something that does not surprise me. I recognize only two tenants now, who lived in that trailer park during my effort of before there. High turnover rates in tenancy help create the ongoing Heatherdale cat problem. One man there now is feeding nine unfixed cats.

So far, I've taken in six of the nine. Two tenants have pledged to go door to door, to locate unfixed owned cats and people who might be feeding unfixed strays.

The problem is certainly not as bad as it was when I was trying to get the cats fixed in that park before, as my back failed. I ended up having back surgery, but I tried to get all the cats of Heatherdale fixed first. In the end, I could barely walk and little kids would help me carry traps. I suppose that's why Comet never got a home. The 15 other kittens I took out of there did, but when my back failed, and my mother died, all at the same time, Comet slipped through the cracks and is still here, waiting.

It's been a busy couple of months, I would have to say and productive. Every spay saves so many lives. Every neuter does, also. Neuters also prevent the spread of FIV, which is common here in Albany, because so many people do not fix their free roaming males.

I sure miss my own Hopi and Moby. Bless you, my kitties, you gave me such love when I needed it badly.

Let's keep at it. Let's fix the cats. Let's do it. Let's just keep on doing it. I'm in. Are you?

Jody the Cat Trapper
Albany, Oregon

2 comments:

whitesocks said...

Thank you for your caring and wonderful work with the trapping etc. I saw Strayer's blog today, and like you, am in deep admiration of someone like her. I think I am going to see what I can do to help. (BTW, I've also volunteered with cat and dog spay/neuter etc all my life) It is so heartening to hear about people like you and Strayer, given how unimportant non-human lives are to so many people.

HB Livin' said...

thank you for your comment white socks!
she can always use help. even giving old sheets and towels to local vets is a good way to help. keep up the great work!