My Perfectly Imperfect Pets

Okay, so I’m feeling guilty about my post from last Sunday, A Slow Learner. You now may have the impression my dogs are a bit dense. Maybe because I said so. But what we learned last week is that I, too, am a bit dense. Apparently we in this house are slow learners.

Having said that, it’s only fair to share both the foibles AND attributes of my 4 dogs and 5 cats. Now don’t get me wrong; rest assured the good outweighs the bad, which helps tremendously on days I want to pull my hair out. So here you go:CALLIE, my 3-legged pup, is so loving my sister calls her Kissy-Lover because she drenches you in wet ones…When Skip drops his blanket off the end of the bed, and I’m too lazy to retrieve it, I say, “Callie, get the blanket!” She not only gets it, she brings it back to Skip which leaves us both thrilled.

Callie is fearful of most things…When there’s thunder or fireworks, she has to be ON me, not just near me. And she weighs 58 pounds…Callie eats dog poop in the backyard and sometimes brings it inside to snack on later. Continue reading

A Slow Learner

I’m sitting here with my laptop actually on my lap while Wally sleeps on the ottoman. Thoughtful of him to let me have some of it, don’t you think? Anyway, you probably notice his belly band (aka diaper). Not exactly stylish but Amazon lost my order of fashionable diapers for him and Taffy, my other pup who also struggles with the concept of peeing outside.Having said that, I do have 2 other pups who recognized long ago that canines peeing in the garden is the preferable urinary etiquette expected by dog guardians who enjoy their home being pee-free. Two out of 4. Humm. Where did I go wrong?

Skip grooming Callie. My 2 diaperless pups

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The Great Escape

So I recently relocated 4 young ferals as mousers to a property that on the surface seemed perfect. Still, I entertained little nagging doubts about the owner of the 700 acre ranch, winery and B&B. Yes, he said all the right things but was it because he thought it’s what I wanted to hear? I wondered, but ignored my hunch because the place seemed perfect for feral mousers. And it was. But HE surely wasn’t.

trust-your-gut

We acclimate cats for 3 weeks in cages before releasing them. But when Mr. Jackass admitted he let the cats out after 10 days, he confirmed my reservations. Still, he assured me they were fine, eating a lot, everything’s hunky-dory…blah, blah, blah. So yeah, I wanted to believe him.

A couple weeks later I returned to collect our relocation supplies. That’s when I saw the magnitude of ignoring my hunch. Basically, the cats were starving. Turns out he barely fed them in the erroneous belief they’d be better hunters (the opposite of what I instructed). However, nobody can tell this guy anything so I immediately formulated a plan to recover the cats, knowing he’d resist.

whats-the-plan

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One Smart Cookie


I’m writing this on Friday afternoon sitting in my SUV in front of a home I’ve come to know much too well the last 41 days. In fact, I think I’ve been here more than my own home lately. Now don’t get me wrong; that’s a lie. But it feels true.

I’ve been on the hunt for a mom and her kittens with Constanza, our San Rafael volunteer coordinator for Marin Friends of Ferals. I’ve been doing TNR (trap-neuter-return) for 15 years and I’ve never encountered a smarter cat, feral or domestic. And THAT’S no lie.

Constanza

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Ned, The Target Cat


About 6 months ago, a woman and her daughter sent me a video of a long-haired tabby racing through the parking lot of Target late one night. The daughter captured him on her iPhone while her mom yelled, “Film him before he runs away! Hurry, don’t miss him!” Followed by, “I KNOW Mom! I’m getting him!”

When Target closes at 9:00 p.m., cats emerge from the marshland that hugs the store on 2 sides, the bay on the other. Shoppers sometimes leave them food, some contact us (Marin Friends of Ferals) and some, I assume, simply look away.

Target isn’t located near homes so these are feral cats or possibly lost or dumped domestics. So my awesome volunteer, Holly, and I placed a feeding station under a bush off the parking lot, locked a motion sensor camera to it, and started feeding.

Holly

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