Oct 8, 2011

Happy Ending: I Found a Lost Cat After 3 Weeks!

(Make sure you scroll down for a video of sweet Stubbie!)

I haven't even written it yet and this is already one of my favorite posts ever, right up there with the day I announced that Little Meow got a forever home.

I've kept kind of quiet about it here (hoping to post about a happy ending), but some of you know from Facebook and Twitter that I've been searching for a lost cat for the past few weeks. NOT Pimp or Moo, thank goodness, but Stubbie, a cat I was rescuing from my office parking lot.

Stubbie is a sweet little thing with no tail. She had a tail, but when she was dumped in our parking lot she had a rubber band around it and it eventually lost circulation and was no more. She is an absolute love who deserves better than the parking lot life.

So her other two parking lot mommies and I decided to look for a home or rescue for her. Her main parking lot mom, Kelly, found her a tiny rescue where she was welcome to go (even after she tested FIV+!) and we were happy to give her the beginnings of the good life.

However, on her first night there, she somehow managed to get out. Stubbie is shy and she was no doubt scared. We have no idea how she got out, but I woke up the next morning to an email that started with "OMG! OMG! OMG! I don't know where Stubbie is."

Panic. I drove over there, speeding the whole way, hoping to find her in the deep back of a closet or something. But no, she must have gone outside.

And so started the search. I was NOT letting this girl be on her own in a place she didn't know. Our goal was to do better for her, not to just dump her somewhere else.

Luckily, the neighborhood was very cat-friendly and safe, and we weren't immediately concerned about strange streets or traffic.

The short version of the search: Over the past three weeks, six of us have spent probably a couple hundred hours scouring the neighborhood; we've hung and passed out over $350 in color fliers, signs and stickers; we've put out countless piles of food hoping to just give her a place to stop roaming and make a "home base;" we've talking to every neighbor within earshot.

I made Stubbie her own website -- www.findstubbie.com -- and posted it on all the fliers so people could get the latest updates, sightings, contact info and her story. We registered a special phone number for her with Google Voice so she could be an easy-to-remember 281-FIND-CAT. I made "Stubbie Search" a foursquare check-in with contact info and her picture.

We were getting some calls from people all over the neighborhood. They saw a gray cat, but weren't sure if she had a tail. They saw her 100%... the morning before. They saw her walking across their front yard. I sped over every time, but none of us ever saw her ourselves, and we weren't even sure it was her they were seeing.

After nearly two weeks had passed, I'd honestly all but given up hope. I wasn't giving up, believe me, but that little seed of doubt was creeping into my head and I was worried we'd really never find her.

And then, like some kind of miracle, Kelly, one of her fellow parking lot mommies SAW HER when she was going to put out food! She was walking across from the house she'd gotten lost from. STUBBIE! She fed her, but Stubbie wouldn't let her close enough to touch. She stayed with her a long time, but there was no getting her that night. We knew where she was, though! Progress.

Over the next week, we visited those bushes and Stubbie several times a day to make sure she always had food and water, and no reason to roam. She slowly got back into a routine, learned that we were the people who loved her and eventually started coming out more and closer to us.

Today, finally, WE GOT HER! Just wow. Our little girl is safe. I am so relieved and so happy that we were able to find and get her. You can't even imagine. Lost cats just don't normally get found... Stubbie is very, very lucky.

Here's a video of her in my office right after Kelly scooped her up and into a carrier. She came to hang out with me for a little bit before she went to her next destination.

Today she's in our friend's bathroom and she will go to the vet next week to get a bad tooth fixed (we took her to the vet before the rescue) and then we'll figure out what the next steps are.

Part of me wants to let her live in her parking lot again, where she's lived for years with her fellow parking lot kitty friends. She gets food from us three times a day, lots of love and vet care when she needs it. It's not that bad of a life.

And the other part of me wants to try desperately to find her a real home, with a forever family who will love her and give her the adjustment time she needs to be a good inside kitty -- which I know she will be!

But in the meantime... back to the parking lot while we look? I'd hate to coop her up in someone's bathroom while we search. Finding an FIV+ kitty from a parking lot a home isn't the easiest mission to embark on.

Whatever we decide (we have a few days to figure it out), I know we'll do what's best for her. I love that little girl. And having her back safe and sound and with us is the best thing that's happened to me in many, many weeks.

And just for the record, the rescue she went to, Good Karma Pet Rescue, is a great place. The woman who runs it is fabulous and cares immensely for all the animals there. She has a huge heart, and this was something no one could have predicted or ever thought would happen. She helped hugely in the Stubbie Search and we love her for offering Stubbie a place to live. She may go back there; she may not. What I've learned for all of this, I think, is that sometimes OK really is OK. And Stubbie's life in the parking lot really is kind of OK.

Oct 7, 2011

Cat Says "No No No!" to the New Doggie

There is a new doggie in the family and Charlie the cat is not shy about telling everyone how he feels about the situation.

That dog? In MY house? No, no, no, nononono...

Oct 6, 2011

Kitty Asks for Directions

Don't you hate it when your friends run ahead of you and you can't keep up? This kitty's three buddies ran off and now he doesn't know which direction they went.

Thank goodness for the nice man who pointed him in the right direction!

Oct 5, 2011

Kitten Plays Catch

Mochi is a smart kitty who loves to play catch. See, kitties can learn tricks just as well as doggies!

Oct 3, 2011

Relaxing, Sleepy Cats (and the State of Cute)

It's Monday and I've had a rough couple weeks. You know what I could really use? Some soft music and some soft kitties. Good thing there are plenty of videos of that on YouTube!

Here's one that's purrfectly relaxing:

And now a note from Cute: You guys, I know this probably isn't very "cute," but I need to let it out and you all are friends to me and this is a blog, which is where people talk about how they feel.

I have been totally and completely overwhelmed lately and I feel like I need a break. If you know me personally, you know I've been searching for a lost cat for the past two weeks. (NOT Pimp or Moo, don't worry, but Stubbie, a parking lot kitty I was rescuing. She somehow got out her first night at her rescue -- a place she has no idea where she's at -- and has been missing. I have spent all my energy these past days looking for her. Two days ago, we found her. She's safe, in some bushes, and has been there since then. I can't get her out yet, but we will.)

I write this blog and The Cat's Meow on Catster. I have a full-time job where I really do three people's worth of jobs. I am trying to find the time to organize my third annual Santa Paws Drive. I freelance for Iams' The Daily Cat blog. I am training for several half marathons, which means I do crazy things like run 14 miles on Saturday mornings... for fun. I have nine parking lot kitties who depend on me and a couple friends for food every day. I recently helped rescue a kitten who was stuck in a car engine, and want desperately to find the time to go visit him at Cats Exclusive, but I don't have the time. (This is his Petfinder page.)

I help Cats Exclusive when I can, helping promote their events and give social media help. I am constantly helping friends place cats and giving out cat advice. I just did a bikini modeling show at a firefighter charity auction to benefit the American Heart Association on Friday. Tomorrow I'm leaving for Vegas for three days for a work-related conference where (thank goodness!) I got out of speaking like I was originally supposed to.

I'm not listing all this out to brag or beg for sympathy, I just need to get it all out. I'm not sure at what point it became too much, but it is. I have no free time.

I love this, all of this. But I need to find time to breathe. I'm not sure how to cut back, or what to cut back, but I have to somehow allow myself to realize that I'm not Superwoman. It's in my nature to be, though; that's us how I am.

So this week I will likely still post Cutes everyday, because this blog makes me happy and it always has. I might take a break from a few other things. I am going to try and use my conference as a sort of "vacation" and enjoy being in a nice resort hotel and pay too much for fabulous spa services. But if a day goes by, and there's no new Cute, please know I'll be back, and please come back the next day.

Sanity is important. Health is important -- both mental and physical. One day I'll learn from all these cats I help and love so much and figure out how to just relax and take it easy.

In the meantime, I'll watch videos like the one up there and smile.

Oct 2, 2011

Cat Sings Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star

How about a little Sunday sing-a-long? Everybody (cats and dogs included!), let's sing Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star.

We'll let this kitty lead in the singing. Ready? And... sing!

More cute posts