Tuesday, May 23, 2006

the gray and white feral cat.....


one of the most troublesome things for me when i came to bahrain was all the wild (feral) cats everywhere. as an animal lover and an animal rights activist, it's hard to see this.

when i lived in the states, i was involved in programs where we'd capture, spay and release wild cats. i've done that here a few times but our vet thinks i'm a nut... no one does it here. there's a female white cat, i call her Momma Cat, who has had probably 15 litters since i've lived in this area. one cat, we call her Phoebe, had a litter of six kittens.... they all disappeared... i assume someone took them to the dumpster or dropped them. we got her spayed...

the cat above is a wild cat that i've seen in our neighborhood for a while. he's dying. i took this picture last week. i took food to this dumpster but he wasn't around and i hadn't seen him again until just a little while ago. the Momma Cat was outside wanting food, so i took some out to her. while i was standing there, i heard a cry and the gray and white cat was down by the dumpster. i called to him. he came. but he won't eat or drink anything. he's prob having kidney failure. he seems disoriented.... it breaks my heart to see it.

i know this is life and animals and people die... but it saddens me. my cat Chloe died of kidney failure last july. it was the worst two weeks.... every day she went down hill and there was nothing i could do to help her. i forced food and water down her at first, but then she started fighting me. i still tried.... but she didn't want it. she would go to the bathroom and cry for water - she always loved drinking from the faucet. i'd put her there and she wouldn't know what to do... she'd only cry.

she then started bleeding from her mouth. it breaks my heart still... and sometimes when i go in the bathroom, i can still smell it. she was my little baby and it was so hard to lose her. losing a beloved pet, for anyone who is an animal lover, is almost the worst thing. even tho i know that losing someone you love is also difficult... which i've also experienced.

i know the gray and white cat is on his last leg. i sat out there waiting to see if he'd eat. he'd go to the plate, look around and cry. i put water out for him, he sniffed at it and cried. he's so much thinner than the last time i saw him. he stumbles when he walks... just like Chloe.

his eyes are so sad... i wish i could love on him... i've tamed wild cats in the past... it takes a long time and a lot of patience, but it is possible. i have this ability w/ animals.... they come to me.... wild birds have, cats, squirrels.... but i think if you have a gentleness in you, are extremely patient and dont rush it... animals will come to you.

my heart goes out to this little gray and white cat. May God rest his soul !

24 comments:

Alfanan said...

I remember when Chloe died last year. It's really sad to sit here and think about her. She was a real sweet heart.

jahooni said...

geez.... here I was having a great morning. Now I am so sad I can barely type becuase of the tears swelling up in my eyes. Now I am thinking of my beloved Ally that died right next to my bed after Kate was born. I was devestated. I miss her so.

Ruby said...

Sweety, this is really sad, I'm so sorry (Sherbert - ssshhhh)

mae mae said...

i'm so sad for you. my heart breaks reading this post because i know how you feel to be an animal lover, and as i read this i keep thinking about my baby Milo, and how she's getting old and one day she's going to die and i don't know if i can handle that. i wish animals (well, and people too, at least the good people) didn't have to suffer.

tooners said...

you know... i was thinking last night about something George Carlin said about animals - "they're little tragedies waiting to happen"... and it's sooo true. i look at all my kitties and know one day the pain will come again.

i saw this lil guy outside this morn. his fur is all ruffled... he's just laying there... it breaks my heart because he may suffer for days....

Lisa said...

As an animal lover myself, I hate seeing animals suffer. My mom was a veterinary technition while i was growing up so she would always bring home animals that the owners couldn't afford to take care of. But, she also knew when the time came that it was better to put the animal down so it wouldn't suffer. It was always so sad because she wouldn't waste anytime, if she found out it was sick or injured and couldn't heal, she'd put it down immediately. It was better for the pet, but traumatic for me. I would say if you are willing to spay wild animals, maybe you should think of taking this cat to the vet to be put down. That way it would suffer anymore, and you won't have to suffer by watching it suffer. Such a sad post!!!

Ms Bees Knees said...

i hear you girl. my sister and i grew up with many cats and dogs. every one that passed away broke my heart in two. i now have my 11-year old alley cat "Happy" who means the absolute world to me. i can't imagine, after 11 years of her being my constant companion, that one day she'll be gone. she's my shadow. *sniff*

tooners said...

lisa, yeah, sometimes ppl put their animals down too quick for me, but i understand the need at times. when chloe was sick i debated it for days but i just couldn't do it. even tho ppl would say i'm selfish and made her suffer... i just couldn't. the gray and white cat is gone. i'm sure he passed.

ms bees knees, i love the name "happy"... that is so sweet. isn't there something about an alley cat :) i've taken care of some over the years i'll never forget. a long time ago, i took care of this one at an apt. and i called him george - after that cartoon "george of the jungle". he was the sweetest thing.

tooners said...

ruby !!! hi! :) thanks!

Anonymous said...

If you need help with the ferals im sure these guys could help.
www.feralcathunt.com

tooners said...

don't want to hurt the cats in any way. would like some involvement from ppl in helping to get them spay and neutered.

i'll check out the site... but not planning on doing anything other than helping in a positive way.

Olivia said...

This would break my heart too.
I've lost about amillion pets - rabbits, dogs, birds.

Since we had to give away our last dog when I was rather young, the rabbits hurt the most - as I had them in my late teens and 20s, so I loved them with a deeper understanding, and I cried my heart out when I lost each one, specially the two I was closest to.

I wish I could read more of your blog, it's interesing but - as you know, I went to work today and am propping my eyelids up with a toothpick. Too sleepy to get up and get ready for bed...!

Chris in MB said...

Have a fair amount of stray cats up here. I've taken in three but can't manage any more.

Most freeze during the winter or are taken by the grey owls. It sounds harsh but in some ways I think it's a good thing. Prevents the sick & suffering animals from lingering around.

Only the lucky, smart, & healthy survive.

In the case of the two that I took in, it was their coloring that saved them. Their tortoise shell coloring was the perfect camouflage in my fields. Made them absolutely invisible. They also choose to move in with me, sneaking into my shop one winter night & not leaving. They even learned how to turn the door knobs & open my doors.

One is still feral & even after two years refuses to be touched. She'll sit beside me but that's about it.

tooners said...

when i was younger, i lost ginea (sp?) pigs and dogs. i remember crying a lot for my little ginea pig. but, as i get older, the loss hurts more and i think it's because of what you say Olivia... it's the love you have and a deeper understanding. thanks for your post!

oh chris, i love torti's! they're so sweet. we had a stray outside that would come for food but i haven't seen her in 4 days. there's some Rescue Remedy that you can give to cats (in their water - about 4 drops w/ every fresh bowl) that will help to tame them. you can get it at Whole Foods and such. there are other formulas that can be mixed w/ it to help tame wild cats. i've used it and the stuff really works.. in case you're interested ;) but.. the sitting next to you is a good thing... that's sweet. i agree that nature has it's way of weeding out and only the healthy and smart survive. i see it here daily.

Chris in MB said...

Another interesting thing about these cats is that they're sisters & look after each other.

While feral the shy one did most of the hunting & was dominate. After moving in the affectionate one became dominate.

The shy one also disappeared for a week once. I gave up on her. One day her sister found her & lead her back home limping. She was in very poor shape from an animal attack. Cuts, infection, with a broken & torn leg. Vets wanted to amputate but I could not afford $600 so stuck with antibiotics & a splint. I left her alone & she healed up ok. This may also be another reason for her shyness.

tooners said...

We have a kitty, Yumi, that was a stray or sort of. Four cats were left at our house by the previous tenants and she was one of them. The same thing happened to Yumi as your shy feral. One day, she came to the yard w/ a broken leg, dragging it behind her. We took her to the vet and they wanted to put her to sleep or operate, which would have been way too expensive.

The vet told us that it could possibly heal on its own, so we put her in a small bathroom, I tended to her daily, and after prob two weeks she was getting better. Now, you'd never know that she was ill. Sometimes she favors that leg and sometimes I'll see her limping if she's been playing heavily, but she's doing good.

Two of the other four disappeared and never came back. One cat, Phoebe, who is the mother of Yumi, lives on the streets and around our house. She comes for food but I never see her otherwise.

I hope the torti mother that was living in our yard comes back. We had her fixed w/ her four kittens, and she's so exceptionally sweet. One of her kittens was black and I think someone killed it. They were all doing good until the other day. Now the torti is gone and one of her daughters. I call to them... so hopefully one day I'll come out and they'll be there.

I think it's wonderful that her sister led her back to your house and looks after her. What a touching story. I have a book called "Psychic Pets"... it's really good. I think that's the name. I just looked on Amazon and none of the covers look the same, so I'll check. A lot of it has to do w/ the abilities of animals and how they find their way home.

Beth T. said...

Tooners – Have seen you around – at The Religious Policeman. Just didn’t realize you were here – in the Middle East – too! There a hundreds of cats roaming the streets in Dhahran and Khobar! Hundreds. Skinny, mangy, pathetic looking cats. I can’t stand it! Have you ever seen the number of cats that live at Customs on the Causeway? And, yes, have seen them in Bahrain, as well. And, not just cats in Bahrain – was standing looking out the balcony at a friend’s flat in Bahrain [Manama – near Ric’s Country Kitchen] and saw a pack of dogs – there were four or five – and from way up on the top floor it looked as if they were playing – but, who knows – I think it would be quite difficult to have the energy to “play” when your tummy is empty, when you’ve had no clean water, and are probably host to a variety of parasites. We were headed to Bahrain one late afternoon a couple months ago – driving in on that road where BurgerLand is – and traffic was slowing down, stopping, honking it’s horns [umm – the blaring of the horns is not at all an unusual sound] and as we got closer to the commotion – it was a PUPPY – a german-shepard mixed breed PUPPY – trying desperately to cross the road – and just crouched and shaking and scared and confused. I’m not even sure if our truck had come to a complete stop when I jumped out the passenger’s side to rescue the dog. For me this is just a natural reflex. Not the first time I have tried to save an animal… It was just awful – the whole situation. I immediately started dialing the cell to a friend’s – don’t ask questions, just tell me how to get to the SPCA – we are “here.” And, of course, the SPCA – or whatever it’s called there – not far from the Danish Dairy – was closed – so spent quite a bit of time on the phone with the police, etc., to find a place to leave the puppy. Not, however, before the puppy – I’d say this dog was five or six months old – not a little puppy – but not a full grown dog – threw up all over the back of the car! Oh my gosh, but the most amazing thing about the “vomit” was the TRASH – yes – TRASH – it contained. Plastic, paper, what was possibly a few small pebbles… Trust me, but for having to clean this up, I never would have “looked” and been able to identify the contents of what the puppy empted out into the back of our car … It took some time – and to this day, it’s still kind of there – to eliminate the odor… It was just sooooo sad that this poor little guy hadn’t had “real” food in quite sometime… I often carry cat food with me when I walk my two “kids” and feed cats that are wandering around out camp here in Dhahran… We had an exodus of “Westerners” after the Oasis compound incident in May of 2004 and people just opened their doors and let their cats out… Our Kennel Club sent notices to EVERYONE, “Do not leave your pet to fend for itself.” For a nominal fee the Kennel Club was willing to euthanize the pets. Okay, maybe this isn’t the most optimal way to handle a situation, but it sure beats leaving a cat – who is used to a bowl of food at night – to find food on it’s own, or worse, to keep from becoming “food.” And – cannot believe you were able to pinpoint the symptoms of “CRF” by looking at one of the feral cats, or had you lost your beloved Chloe and thus knew the symptoms… Yes, we too lost a cat to kidney disease. We left our Siamese, Symphony, with my parents in the states prior to coming to the Mid-East. Symphony was thirteen, going on fourteen at the time, and I truly believed the trip would kill her – being put in her carrier for her yearly trips to the vet was too much stress for her! Just could not possibly put her in her carrier for a twenty-five hour journey. Symphony passed away on May 27th. The Chronic Renal Failure was diagnosed only a month earlier – it all happened very, very quickly, regardless of the fluids she was hydrated with, the hand-feeding of Pedialyte… Symphony had been with my parents for three years – we moved here in 2003 – and she very, very quickly attached herself to my father – who just doted on her every movement, her every purr, her every Yowl [as Siamese do – it’s a very loud, “baby’s cry” – you cannot miss it!]. He called her “The Princess” and treated her as such… Until the passing of Symphony, his beloved “Princess,” I’ve only known my Dad to cry one time in my life – when my sister was killed – and now, I know of two times, and it is heartbreaking…

tooners said...

hi beth!

gosh, your post squeezes my heart... the puppy that you guys found.. well, it breaks my heart. to sit and think that this little guy was eating that stuff because he was sooooo hungry and there was no food, it kills me.

the animal situation here is heart wrenching. when i went back to the States in May, i didn't see any strays. it puts you into a whole different mindset. here, daily, i am showered w/ a sense of helplessness for these little souls that wonder the streets searching for food. it's their life's struggle... but i do the same as you. i feed them. i have a box of food that i keep for the feral cats. they are the sweetest little things, even tho they're wild. their eyes say so much, and that's why i don't stop.

i've only seen one dog in our neighborhood. it looked ill or something. it was in someone's outside yard area, breathing heavy. when we came back, it was gone. i've seen dog packs and they break my heart. we've done the dog walks and it tears at my heart. i think that if i could have a huge farm, w/out a worry for money, i would help as many of these animals as possible.

i've gotten some slack from the vet we go to, but i just laugh it off. i wish they had a program here set up w/ the vets to help w/ spay and neutering. they did in the States and it helps. if only ppl would realize that if you help out a little, it goes a long way.

i'd love for you to email me, but i don't want to leave my email here on this blog.

i hate that so many ppl left their cats when they left SA. i understand the situation, but it still bothers me. you would have thought the companies or embassy would have helped w/ that situation. many navy ppl, from what i hear, take in animals and then throw them out after their leave. i've heard this from a girl at the BSPCA. she said it was a major problem. it makes me sick. i've seen so many wild dogs in that area. but because bahrain kills wild dogs, i dont see them very often. there's a shanty type house down the road from where we live and they have two or three dogs. they're sooooo thin. really, i don't feel that ppl have a right to have animals if they don't know how to take care of them. there should be more restrictions here. there's such a market for pure breeds and so many ppl are in the breeding market - for money - that it's gotten terribly out of hand.

you would not believe the things i saw at Hamad Town Suq. the way they were keeping cats there. i thought i would die. i can't even think about it.

and the fact that they do dog fighting here is another huge problem which adds to the overbreeding/over population problem. there are just so many things...

thanks for posting. i hope to see you again!

Beth T. said...

Tooners - Don't even get me started on the dog fighting - if there was any animal abuse I could stop - and I hate to put it this way - I'd allow feral cats, dogs, lions, tigers and bears - oh my! - to procreate and turn into mutants that eat people - but the dog fighting! THAT, my Dear, is an issue I am passionate about and for people to think this is a sport, for people to even consider the thought of this - and I'd use the term "men" for people - but there have been numerous women involved in North Carolina - I do believe that if I ever happened upon a dog fight and could personally attack the fight sponsors, the owners [yeh, as if they are deserving of the privilege to be a dog owner!] of the poor, wretched, dear, sweet dogs forced to fight, and any participants merely observing the action - you can safely put your money – and I do mean your entire life savings – on me to win, thumbs down, with only my bare hands . Sure, it might not be a “clean” fight, but at that point, that would be the least of my worries… There would be hair pulling, fingernail gouging, biting, kicking... They say adrenaline allows you to perform feats of a magnitude requiring strength you didn't know you possessed. This, I'm quite certain, for me, would be one of those times!

Do you have Angie’s e-mail address? Or Shewolf’s? Or K from Oslo? The three of them have my e-mail. Please ask one of them to share my e-mail with you. I certainly understand that you wouldn’t want to post it. I wouldn’t post mine, either. And, we can always ask Alhamedi, but I truly would prefer not to bother him with such trivia if I don’t have to. I believe I’ve pestered him enough lately.

I am truly envious of you, having the freedom you have, in Bahrain! It may not seem like a lot of freedom to you, but it’s a world apart from the freedom that I am allowed. Angie, and a few others, are trying their damnest to get me to start a blog. Has nothing to do with the fact that I don’t want to. I am sure that once I started I’d be unstoppable. My problem is the location… Alhamedi told me fairly recently that yet another blog – here – in my part of the world – had been blocked. Don’t know who the blogger was, or what the blogger said, just know that the “Powers that Be” at Censorship Central Headquarters decided to unanimously eliminate the possibility of anyone else viewing and musing upon whatever opinion was there. The idea of being blocked would be okay, I’d be fine with that. You simply roll up your tent and move to another place in the desert. The situation I’d be concerned with is the fact that we are ex-pats, and you are only an ex-pat HERE if you have something that one of their own doesn’t – or something along those lines – you are here for THEIR benefit [for your own as far as the money, but that’s as far as it goes], thus my concern… We would be fairly easily expendable – just get another ex-pat to take our place – my husband’s, that is. Me? I’m just another “women’s” and but for the fact that “they” want my husband here – I am a nothing – piece of extra baggage they’d be more than happy to part with – a liability…

Let’s figure out a way to exchange e-mails!

Alfanan said...

Your posts truly broke my heart. It's really sad to see the animal situation here in the middle-east. It all boils down to families and parents not teaching their children how to love animals.

I grew up in a family without pets. I remember the one time, I was probably 11 or 12, that I wanted to have a dog, my family REFUSED the idea. My sister first told me that it was "Haram" to have a dog in the house, because, according to her – and I'm sure to many Muslim's beliefs – the 'angels' won't come in the house.

"That's fine" I said, "We don't need no angels in the house"…. And that's when all hell broke loose. She went and told my dad no to allow me to have a dog, ever. Of course, my dad agreed, and so did my mom.

I did eventually bring a beautiful puppy home against everybody's wish. I was sooo happy with 'Ra'aad' (means thunder), I was running in the backyard with him, playing on the grass, throw the ball so he can bring it to me, walk him around the house, I was doing everything with him. I couldn't wait to come back form school to see him and play with him.

But this didn't last long. Ultimately, my sister did win the battle and convinced everyone that we all will 'go to hell' because there's a dog in the house. I came home one day, and the dog was gone. No one would tell me what happened to him or who took him.

This just goes to show you how some people think here. It's really ridiculous because some people take thing to the extreme. I find it interesting that every part in a dog is 'Najis' (basically if you touch it, you can't go and pray before washing up) EXCEPT his head, because that's the only part that the Prophet touched. Wouldn't that be a reason to have a dog though? I think so.

tooners said...

alfanan, i think this is horrible, and it makes me so sad inside. it makes me mad too. it makes me mad that they took the dog away and wouldn't tell you where he was. that is heartbreaking for a child. now, i want to get a puppy so you can run and play w/ it. ppl can be so cruel, especially when it comes to animals. i want a puppy now... i want one to show them... to show everybody that they are loving and God's creatures.

why didn't anyone pitch a fit when your brother was going to get one and put it in the back yard??!!!

i'm sorry that this happened. i am really sorry. i love his little name...

tooners said...

Yes, the dog fighting and the pics I've seen make me sick. I feel so much like you - you don't even know. I've heard that a lot of Filipinos organize them here. I've talked to the girl that is the Mgr. at the BSPCA and she told me all kinds of horrible stories about it. The way they treat these dogs, starving them, beating them and such.

You make me laugh but I agree so much w/ what you say about wanting animals to eat/tear apart/do damage to these ppl. You know, whenever I see those shows "Why Animals Attack" and such, I always blame the humans. They deserve it really.

Anyway... I don't know these ppl you are speaking of. What are their blogs? I understand what you're saying about SA and blogs. I had someone hit my blog yesterday w/ a bunch of crap saying that they knew who I was and that my boss is aware and all this crap.. being really racist.

I'd love to email w/ you. Tell me how to get ahold of these ppl you referred to. :) smiles to you.

tooners said...

Beth, actually I'll look these blogs up. I've seen this K from Oslo... I think. Sounds familiar.

tooners said...

Beth, I found K from Oslo, but she doesn't have a blog. This Shewolf, I found hers but it's weird... can't leave a comment on it for some reason. Not sure if it's the same person or what. Is she a sports person?

If you go to my flickr acct., I think my email is listed there. You can access it thru my blog.