Sunday, July 21, 2024
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Adoptable Kitties: Saving One Kitten, and a Whole Colony

gray kitten
The rescued gray kitten looks right at home. Photo by Rose McGrogan Altvater.

A friend posted a photo of a darling gray kitten on my Facebook page and asked if I had room for the little one. I know she’s rescued several in the past and wondered where this one may have come from. I asked Rose for the story.

kitten and spotted cat
Kitten meets Puddy. Photo by Rose McGrogan Altvater.

It turns out she was at a local sports center that has roller and ice rinks, a pool and more, the sort of place that would get a good crowd of people on a Sunday. A man was there with four kittens his cat had given birth to, trying to find homes for the kittens. Rose, concerned, already has six rescues but wasn’t sure what would happen to them so she took one of the kittens. Now, of course, she’s wondering about the other three.

kitten meets dog
Kitty meets Luke. Photo by Rose McGrogan Altvater.

He had said the mother cat was not spayed yet and from the way he was talking she was a stray who was now friendly and used the litterbox. The kittens, especially this one, look quite healthy and clean and they are very friendly and social so they apparently got a lot of handling. From those clues it sounds as if he’d taken them in and given them a fairly good home, but who knows what will happen to the other kittens, or to mama cat?

This little gray kitten has met all members of the household and shown no fear or aggression, she’s just a sweet and charming little bit who looks as if she’d fit in just about anywhere. Despite the situation, it looks as if she was well-cared for and loved by her rescuers. She’d make a wonderful addition to any family.

kitten and orange cat
Kitty meets Poppy. Photo by Rose McGrogan Altvater.

Rose took the first step, by at least assuring this kitten a good foster home until a permanent one is found. Can you help her and either foster or adopt this little fuzzball? If so, comment below or send a message to me and I’ll get it to Rose or message her on Facebook.

gray kitten and gray cat
Kitten meets Blue. Photo by Rose McGrogan Altvater.

Moving a Colony of Cats

Several people in a Facebook group I read regularly have been, among other things, rescuing cats from a stray/feral colony situation that went bad. Near an apartment complex in a wooded suburban area cats began gathering outdoors and for a while had actually been cared for by someone who lived there, who presumed the original cats had been left behind by owners.

TNR was not applied and over time the colony grew from strays to ferals, and the apartment complex’s management laughingly remarked they were trapping and “getting rid of” the cats, saying variously that they had taken them to the Western Pennsylvania Humane Society, which had no records of it, or they had gone “over the river”, with no clear explanation of what that was. What was clear was that the cats were disappearing and, unspayed were once again this summer giving birth to kittens. Not residents nor visitors were permitted to feed the cats, and several people who had originally gone there to feed them and assess the situation were banned from visiting again.

three cats outside
Three wary cats approach their feeding station; hopefully soon they'll be trapped and moved to a safer place. Photo courtesy Indigo Tiger of Animals Against the Odds.

So in this summer’s extreme heat and rain they were either dehydrated or developing dangerous URIs, and rescuers were lurking around in the woods just out of sight, trapping cats and treating them. But so many were sick, and with winter coming on, knowing they were not being fed, something had to be done for them. Moving a colony is not easy, partly because there aren’t a whole lot of places where they would be able to go. But a place was found and in several shifts they have been moving those they can catch and treating their illnesses as well as having spay/neuters done.

Ultimately there will be 25 to 30 cats in the new colony. A few more cats need to be moved, but their shelter really needs to be completed before winter. A safe location has been secured and work has begun to prepare the building for cats, with two outdoor areas (dog kennels, that need to be secured for cats). Painting and repairs have begun, but they still need a significant amount of supplies in order to complete the work necessary for the cats to live in.

Animals Against the Odds is handling this situation in conjunction with the Homeless Cat Management Team. About $500 is still needed to finish this project both for building materials and for medicines. Some of the cats are adoptable—after all they were pets once—so if you have the ability to adopt or to donate to finish the project, AATO would much appreciate it. They also rescued a litter of kittens from near Oakdale, PA, all of whom had URIs and other ailments, and all but one, Skylar who I wrote about last week, are doing well now and looking for forever homes.

What the colony needs

If you or anyone you know is looking for a tax write off or willing to donate any of the following supplies, AATO would greatly appreciate it! Click this link to visit the ChipIn for Animals Against the Odds if you’d rather donate that way. Donations as checks or gift cards for Home Depot/Lowes/BusyBeaver/Agway, or Pet Smart/Burton’s can be mailed to AATO, 511 Towne Square Way, Ste #213, Pgh PA 15227.

Paint sprayer
2-3 rolls of 4′ x 50′ chicken wire (or similar size fence)
2-4 dark green/camo colored tarps 8×10
2 tons of gravel #2
30-35 bags of concrete

Grainfree Cat Food (for 25-30 cats)
Scoopable Cat Litter
Litter boxes
Insulated Houses/Boxes
Pine Chips
Kitty Condo/climbing tree
Treats/Toys and enrichment for their transition
Bach Flower “Rescue Remedy”

Many more cats out there…

There are so many homeless cats, and still more to be rescued. I’ll be featuring them as often as possible. Please share.

Photos provided by the rescuers.

Read about other cats for adoption.

All images used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission. Please ask if you are interested in purchasing one as a print, or to use in a print or internet publication.


From health and welfare to rescue and adoption stories, advocacy and art, factual articles and fictional stories, "The Creative Cat" offers both visual and verbal education and entertainment about cats for people who love cats, pets and animals of all species.

2 thoughts on “Adoptable Kitties: Saving One Kitten, and a Whole Colony

  • Pingback: The Creative Cat - Kittens Big and Little, Rescued and in Need

    • Melody Donnelly

      Hi Bernadette, I never thought to ask you if you know of anyone who would be willing to help with the restoring of the barn on my property. I offered it up as a possible halfway house to AATO for any animals in need of temporary housing earlier this year. It was originally built to hold just 2 horses, so it’s not huge, but it is 2 full stories. The bottom could easily hold 2-3 larger dog kennels with room to spare or a few more smaller ones and the upper level could hold a number of cat kennels. Both levels have outside access if fencing could be provided. The barn itself is well built and solid, but the main problem is the cinder block foundation which is caving in more and more each year. The previous owner built a support instead of fixing the foundation and so far it’s holding well. There was water and electric down to it at one time, but neither work anymore…may be something simple, maybe not, I don’t know. Plus of course it needs a bit more TLC than that since it hasn’t been used in years now, but nothing extremely costly. The main issue that needs addressed before anything else is even looked at, is someone who can excavate the small hillside that is pushing in the cinderblocks and someone who can repair the wall. AATO tried to get someone to come out, but the person that she knew was always too busy. I would love to fix it up myself, but I just can’t afford to do it with the repairs that still need to be done on the house. I would hate to see the barn fall since it could be of such a great use to so many animals in need…mainly, the cats that you are speaking of know. I’ve heard a lot about them….and they need help. So if you know of anyone who could help, please let me know. Believe me, I have nothing to gain from this other that keeping a standing barn on my property and a lot of work volunteering as the main caregiver to any animals that end up there. You already have all of my contact info.



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