From commentor Tom M:
This is Cheeto. She rescued herself in November of 2010. My wife and I were at the Cleveland Zoo on a Sunday afternoon. As we walked up to the Cheetah cage, we noticed a commotion. The two Cheetahs were very agitated. They kept running up to the edge of the cage where a group of people were standing. As we got closer, we noticed a pathetic starving cat standing in front of the cage. She could care less about the Cheetahs’ agitation (frankly, she might have enjoyed it). She walked right up to us and let us pet her. We knew we couldn’t leave her there so we picked her up and carried her out of the zoo. Our plan was that we would take her to the shelter, since we already had one cat (Abby) and a dog (Simon), both are rescues. But one and a half years later, she is still with us. She’s no longer pathetic and starving, if anything she’s a touch overweight.
My wife just started a new job in Boston and I’m moving there as soon as I find a job. It was impossible for us to find an affordable place to live that would allow us to have three pets (especially any place which would take an 80 pound dog). So sadly, that means that we have to find a new home for Cheeto.
Cheeto is a great cat. She’s loving, affectionate and a bit goofy. She’s not afraid of anything (unlike our other cat who’s afraid of everything). Her and the other cat do not get along very well, so Cheeto might be better as a the only cat. However, she’s great with our dog. They’re not friends, but they peacefully coexist.
She does have some issues with her teeth. We had her teeth cleaned one year ago and they had to pull some. She’s due for a cleaning pretty soon (which we plan to take care of).
If anyone is interested, I’d be willing to drive her anywhere within a few hours of Cleveland or anywhere along the main route from Cleveland to Boston. There’s a good chance I’ll be driving from Cleveland to Boston the week before Memorial day.
Anyone who knows of a possible home for Cheeto but doesn’t want to post personal information here, email me at AnneLaurie @ verizon.net (click on my name, to the right) and I’ll forward your message to Tom M.
Simon: See what I good dog I am, sitting so nicely and politely!
Cheeto: Month 18 of my captivity. The hairless apes and the dog are beneath my notice, however.
Villago Delenda Est
OK, so beyond Cleveland to Oshkosh is right out, then?
@Villago Delenda Est:
Oshkosh, WI? That’s probably too far.
Tortoiseshell! I love torties. They have serious attitude (aka “tortietude”) but they really are the sweetest, most affectionate cats ever. Sadly, we’re full up, catwise.
When our late tortie Natasha was upset with us, she would follow us from room to room so she could get our attention and then turn her back so we would be fully aware of her displeasure.
@Villago Delenda Est:
This is where you start begging people to help you form a Cheeto Rescue Chain to cross state lines.
@Villago Delenda Est: because the scranton to oshkosh corridor will be flooded with OCEANS OF UNLIMITED SUPERPAC CASH, the cleveland to boston corridor will be partially submerged.
Too soon after Anne Laurie posted this for a new thread, even an open one–
MSNBC’s Tamron Hall goes Hulk on a conservative “journalist”.
From Think Progress:
Ivan Ivanovich Renko
@Soonergrunt: Oooh, that’s gonna leave a mark.
You’d think that at some point in time at least some of the media would see that not only is mittens a liar but that to fluff him his staff has to bluster or lie as well. And then see that calling them on that is what they are supposed to do.
OK and yes my pony is in the mail, due to arrive any day now, as soon as my delivery person’s hernia gets better.
Do you have a guesstimate on Cheeto’s age?
The vet thought she was about 7.
Wish I could help with Cheeto, but am in Texas. I have animal rescuing friends in several states, but none in this area. I hope others can help you find a great home for such a pretty kitty!
Your dog looks EXACTLY like my dog except mine also has white “socks.” Same size too – he also weighs 80 pounds. Jake is adopted and was found as a stray, so I have no clue about what his heritage is. Do you have any idea what breed/breeds your dog is?
i have cat
oh no! can’t you sneak her in?
This is perfect timing since we’ve been talking about adding a new addition to our family. We currently have a super lazy 8 yr old lab we rescued last year so Cheeto would be a only cat. We are in Cleveland as well. You can email me at [email protected].
Looking forward to hearing from you!
oooh, tom and wendy — hope this works out!
@Wendy: Bless your heart. You too, TomM, of course! I am having a horrible day in a horrible week and seeing this is just what I needed.
He’s a lab-husky mix. He looks mostly like a lab, but acts like a Husky. He has one blue eye and one brown one.
Hi Wendy. That’s wonderful news, thanks! We’re very excited for him to go to another lab family. I’ll contact you with more details via email.
Love the table and chairs! Is is mid-century or a repro?
If only someone on the TV had slapped down VP candidate Sarah Palin like that. Or any of this presidential cycle’s Republican Klown Kar Kandidates.
Thanks, I’m pretty sure it’s a repro.
Thank you to the folks willing to take in this kitty.
I wish I had space for all of them out there.
How appropriate, the kitteh is on the chair and the dog is on the floor.
John - A Motley Moose
What does the BJ animal lover crowd think of trap-neuter-release for feral cats? I’ve got quite a few of them around my house and would really like to do something for them. The females are always pregnant and must have really hard, short lives. We’ve been setting out food and water, but I’m afraid that does more harm than good in the long run. The biggest problem I face is that I don’t really have any money to spare for TNR and there don’t seem to be any groups in the area that are willing to help out financially. I’m willing to skip a few meals if it is for a good cause, but there seems to be no clear consensus on whether TNR is really beneficial.
@Wendy: You. Are. Awesome. May you and Cheeto have many happy years together. My first cat was a tortie and she was all queen of the house, but sweet as pie. Everyone loved her, including the duck and chinchilla.
@John – A Motley Moose: In my neighborhood it has really cut down on the cat population. And even a few have been tame enough to be adopted. There’s also a barn cat program here – farm families can adopt neutered feral cats for their farms, that way they are released in a safer locale (less traffic and a warm place to sleep and regular food).
LA has been pretty successful with their program, too, a friend of mine is very active in that area.
@John – A Motley Moose:
TNR is totally beneficial. Totally. Usually there’s a little colony of females, who will instantly become uninteresting to males (heh) and will get peaceful and fat on your generous chow contributions. In Philly, there are groups that help by lending traps and low-cost clinics that will spay and vaccinate for $35 or so. So I hope you live in someplace kinda large. Check out Alley Cat Allies, http://www.alleycat.org.
@John – A Motley Moose: TNR is the best of a bad lot, given that there is no happy ending for ferals. It’s really just a finger in the leaking dam, but it’s better than nothing.
If they’re left intact, they take stupid chances for reproduction, and bring more kittens into a bad situation.
And if they’re euthanized, that just leaves a niche vacuum for other unneutered cats to fill. Bird-lovers are often vocal against TNR because colonies kill wildlife, including birds, but if that niche is just filled by other cats, they’ll kill the birds in turn. Euthanasia does not solve the bird-killing problem.
TNR can lead to the establishment of stable (for a while) colonies, but it’s never going to be more than lighting a candle rather than cursing the darkness–there’s just that much need and more.
I used to work in anesthesia in TNR until my allergies made me puff up like a Japanese blowfish every time I entered the building. I’d say go for it, but be realistic in your expectations of what it can and cannot do.
@John – A Motley Moose:
Trap Neuter and Release – or TNR as it is known – absolutely works. There is probably an organization in your area that does it and would be delighted to assist you. The kitties are lured into humane traps with food. They are spayed & neutered – their ears are painlessly notched to show that – and brought back to their “colony”. Unless they seem to be not feral and are adoptable.
Thus, the neurtered feral ones you can feed with no worries of their making more kitties. They live out their natural lives. You get all the pleasure of having many cats with none of the shedding. Also, if cat food bills mount up, pretty sure Balloon Juice readers would happily paypal some support. (I would!)
Alley Cat Allies is the premier org in the TNR area http://www.alleycat.org/ You can read more about TNR there. But you need to hook-up with a local group. Google can be your friend on that.
And YAY @Wendy!!!
@Wendy: Cheers, Wendy! Good for you and Cheeto; here’s to many happy years together!
Oh good, I’ve been worrying about this beautiful kitty all day.
@John – A Motley Moose: Have you checked with the folks at Alley Cat Allies? They will help a community set up a proper TNR situation, where the feral cat population dwindles with age without undue suffering.
@Wendy: It was fate!
@John – A Motley Moose: Trap-neuter-release is invaluable. It has helped me with a small feral colony I inherited. Here in central Illinois we are lucky to have a great TNR organization.
@John – A Motley Moose:
I saw a TNR person say once that something they’ve started doing with tomcats (ie the feral adult males) is trap them and do a kitty vasectomy. Their instincts to protect their territory and their females stay intact, so they still chase off any marauding intact males, but they can’t make any new kittens. Combine that with spaying the females and it can really keep the colony under control.
For kittens that are in the colony, they may still be able to be socialized, especially if their contact with humans is that they are nice, soft-spoken creatures that bring food.
Of all places, Disneyland has a very successful TNR program — feral cats are drawn to the abundant rodent population, and letting the cats do what cats do is cheaper and more environmentally friendly than trying to poison all of the pests. And if you know the right people, you can get on the list to adopt some of the formerly feral kittens.
John - A Motley Moose
Thanks for all of the replies. I have found one area group that helps with TNR, but they require you to be the owner of the property where you will maintain the colony. I’m leasing, so that is out. I’ve looked into trap loan programs and the closest I’ve found is more than an hour away.
I live in Flint, MI. Times are tough here for people and it isn’t any better for pets. I’ll try contacting some of the programs that are in the Detroit area to see if they can put me in tuoch with someone up here. I know there must be people that care enough to get involved.
@John – A Motley Moose: If it’s just a money issue, I can put up a front-page post asking for donations. Other people have suggested Alley Cat Allies; check to see if they list a Yahoo group for TNR people in your area. I lurk on the local list (only lurk, b/c circumstances) and it’s *very* active, and sometimes individuals can offer a granular level of assistance that a “public” organization can’t legally match.
John - A Motley Moose
@Anne Laurie: It’s not just a money issue. Something like this requires a commitment and quite a bit of research. I need to find a source for traps, at least one vet that is willing to do low-cost spay/neuter, and figure out where I can put some shelters. I also need to talk to my neighbors before I start anything like this. It’s difficult to know how many cats will eventually be in the colony, so I can’t even estimate how much it will cost to feed them.
It looks like my first step is to contact the Southeast Michigan groups that I’ve found online to see if they can point me in the right direction.
I’ve never understood the point of neutering the male cats in a TNR operation. To reduce the number of litters by neutering males, you would have to be 100% effective at getting all the males in a three mile radius or so. But, for every spayed female, that’s one less litter.
Also, that’s a gorgeous cat.
@Gustopher: “But, for every spayed female, that’s one less litter.”
One less per season, so even better.