Thank you so much to everyone who participated in our Against All Odds Rescue Contest. We were so uplifted to read such amazing stories of our readers helping to save the lives of so many cats in dire circumstances. Enjoy some of the runners-up featured below.
On a beautiful fall day in October of l996, my friend and I took our dogs for a run in a field near our homes. My Kona, a Golden Retriever and Katie, a Golden mix, needed a good romp. All of the sudden we saw a streak of white fly past us and up a tree with Kona and Katie in hot pursuit. We ran to the tree and saw a white cat half way up hissing at the dogs. They would not have hurt her, but enjoyed the chase. We could see blood dripping from her head. It was clear she was not coming down while the dogs were in the field so the four of us left to go on our walk.
About two hours later Christie and I went to check on her. There she was, still in the tree. My heart broke. So up the tree I went. She kept going higher, so I stopped and talked to her and she fell into my arms purring. To the vet we went. I had no knowledge of her past but she seemed fine in the car and had no fear of humans. At one point she looked in my eyes and then slumped against my chest. She trusted me.
She had hemangiosarcoma (a blood cancer disorder). Her ears were partially amputated, twice. She was missing a front foot, probably because of pulling out of a trap; the rest of the leg was just bone and skin. She had a crushed hip (likely from an encounter with a car) which had healed crookedly. Our vet decided to leave it as it was because she was able to walk and surgery might have made the hip worse. She had numerous teeth removed, including three fangs. Her throat was injured and to this day her meow is silent. How did she survive in the wild with her injuries—I’ll never know.
She brightens my life daily.
It was May of 2005 when my husband Rijon, our 9-year-old daughter Sarah and I were grieving the loss of both my parents’ cats Sunny, an 18-year-old Siamese, and Stinky, a 14-year-old tabby, who had died nine days apart in April 2005. Sarah and I went to my parents’ home while Rijon went to his weekend job.
What happened next, we feel was a miracle gift from Sunny and Stinky.
Rijon had picked up a soda before work, and he wanted to clean it out of the car. The nearest trash can was at the local Bus Stop’s Park and Ride near my parents’ home. Rijon drove into the parking lot, pulled around to the garbage can, rolled down his window and threw out his trash. But something stopped him from rolling the window back up. He heard a tiny “meow.”
Rijon looked around and there on the bus stop bench, as if waiting for a Metro Bus, was an abandoned little female tabby kitten. Primrose became our family kitten and she helped to heal us. Best of all, she loved to travel to my parents’ home and she healed their hearts too.
It was another cold and wet November evening at the college. Walking toward the parking lot, I heard loud calls of a cat in distress coming from a wild area. I dropped my backpack and braved the thick brush. She cried and cried, but when I got near her, she would move away from me.
Thinking I could earn her trust with food, I drove to a store, bought a can of tuna, and placed it on a grassy area. She warily came out and wolfed down the food.
Over the next three days, as it rained heavily, I would feed her in the same spot, but the calico would always run away when I approached her. Finally, I placed a humane trap in the same spot. She recognized my call, walked around the trap, and hesitantly went inside. The trap engaged. After four days of patience, I had my little calico.
Once home in a warm and cozy bed, she purred with the relief only a frightened and homeless cat knows. “I have a home,” she purred, and the exhausted little cat fell asleep with content.
When I first met Hammy, she was missing half of the fur on her tail and had a huge open sore on the top of her head. She was filthy, full of ticks, emaciated, had ear mites and worms and her eyes were crusted shut.
One day while walking to my car I noticed a group of boys holding something under a laundry basket. When I went over to inspect, Hammy was being held prisoner under the basket and they were poking her with pencils and kicking her. I yelled at the kids, called the police and got her into a cage so I could take her to the animal clinic. She was spayed, given shots and had her wounds treated.
Long story short, three years later Hammy is still timid and scared of strangers, but is a happy and healthy member of our family.
My son and I rescue cats and dogs that have been abandoned and/or abused. We have 18 now and Smokey is the most miraculous to date. I was in sales at the time and took my son to every appointment with me.
We pulled in to a gas station to get something to drink for the ride to the appointment. I had just put my car in park and a man in a pickup threw this tiny white kitten out of his window and across two lanes of traffic. The kitten hit one of the gas pumps very hard.
My son was hysterical and ran to the kitten as fast as he could. He picked it up and ran over to me and said: “Forget about the drinks, we need to go to the veterinarian.” When we got the kitten back home, he had internal injuries and a ruptured ear drum.
Every time we would hand feed him, the formula would run right through him. We would not give up on him and with all of our love he turned out to be our nurturing cat to every new rescue we bring home. He seems to feel like it is his job to clean them up and show them the ropes of their new home. He is our angel.
Corona Del Mar, Calif.
In August of 1997, my boyfriend Michael adopted his first rescue cat named Elizabeth. The two of them were inseparable. He traveled for business and always took her with him. She was his first love.
In February of 2000, we moved in together. Later that year, Elizabeth stopped eating. We took her to the veterinarian and after spending five days there, we were told she was probably going to die. They had done all they could.
We were horribly upset and went to church and prayed the “God, if you let Elizabeth live, I will (insert the deal here)” prayer. We cried ourselves to sleep that night.
The very next morning, the veterinarian called and said, “It’s a miracle! Elizabeth is eating; her blood counts are nearing normal! She’s going to live.”
Michael’s face went white and he had to sit down. Three months later, my Christmas present from Michael was a handwritten note that read, “Will you marry me? Check Yes or No.” I cried as Michael explained that his “deal” with God was that if Elizabeth lived, he would marry me. Thanks to Elizabeth, we are happily married and now the proud parents of nine cats.
**For the winners of the Against All Odds Rescue Contest, check out the September 2007 issue of CAT FANCY.**