Monday, October 8, 2007

Lots of Casting & One Stray

It's been a busy casting week for me. Lots & lots of models to see- always looking for good hair and all types. Here are a few tried & true girls with gorgeous hair & great personalities to boot:



Though my latest obsession is this one redhead that I cannot stop thinking about:

This bewildered little face belongs to an orange tabby that I saw four days ago & haven't stopped thinking about him since. Fcat & I were going to Grandma's house in Queens for dinner. We were about a block away from Grandma's when I spotted an orange cat curled up & sleeping on the stoop of what looked like an abandoned house. I'm not sure if I can convey to you how sad the scene was. A cat sleeping sweetly in front of a house should have been a nice image but it was terribly sad because the cat's fur was all straggly-looking and the house seemed decrepit & abandoned. So what should have been a sweet image was instead a horrible mockery of what might have been, that's what made it so poignant and so heart-wrenching. My first thought was that the owners of the house moved sometime ago & left their cat behind. When I approached the cat it barely opened it's eyes.

Immediately, I rushed off to the supermarket three blocks away and instructed Fcat to go to one of the restaurants on the corner to ask for a cup of water. I was certain that orange kitty had not eaten or drank anything for days. My heart was racing and I couldn't buy that food fast enough. When I returned, Fcat informed me that kitty had gotten skittish when he approached the cat with the water. It was still on the front patio of the house but in a far corner. I opened the food & moved the water closer to the kitty. Kitty got scared & dove under the bushes in front of the patio. We were late for dinner so we left kitty to his own devices.

I could not stop thinking about that poor little cat all through dinner. Conversation was like white noise, I didn't hear a word that was spoken because my head was filled with kitty concern. When we finally left Grandma's house about three hours later, we walked quickly down the block to see if the kitty was still there. That's when I realized that the house was not abandoned because there was the strange glow of television behind the white-out windows. Could this sad kitty actually belong to the owners of this sad-looking house? Made sense perhaps. And kitty was still there, except the food had been polished off & water was had. I opened another can of food & had snuck out a larger container of water from Grandma's.

Well, trying to make this long story shorter but I can't seem to- we saw a woman two doors down and I went to ask her about the orange cat. He didn't belong to anyone but there were some women on the block that fed all the strays under the bush by the house- which was not abandoned, but she did agree that she didn't understand why her neighbors didn't fix their house. When that's all she had to tell me, that orange kitty did not have a home.

Once I returned home, I emailed the rescue group that I used to volunteer with and asked them for help in trapping & fostering the kitty. The next morning no response and I getting antsy. I went online and found another rescue group based in Queens closer to my Grandma's neighborhood and I sent them an email asking them to help. I simply asked these groups if they could help trap & foster the kitty and I would pay all it's vet & food costs. Saturday evening came & my old rescue group said that they were overrun & couldn't help. So I told them that I would trap it myself & find it a home. They did give me a good tip on how to deal with people whose property the cat was hanging out on.

Sunday morning, I awoke thinking about how hungry orange kitty was and made a plan to go see him in the late afternoon. Meanwhile, I never go out to Queens to visit my grandmother- i usually have her come out to visit me in Manhattan, but for kitty- I trekked out.

Kitty was in the same area- sleeping by the bushes on the patio. I opened some wet food & left some water. At that point, people were coming out of the decrepit house & I raced over to talk to them. The wife was in a rush and directed me to her husband, who stood on the stoop- towering over me & looking defensive. We discussed orange kitty which he said was not his cat but that he fed it & some of the women down the block feed it & a bunch of other cats. I asked if I could trap orange kitty & find it a proper home. He started hemming & hawing. He repeated again that he feeds the cat (this was the phenomena that I got a tip on- apparently, people feel ownership over cats even if they are just throwing them scraps). I said that I brought more food & water. He gestured that he had water for it over there and I pointed out to him that the water in the styrofoam cup was what I had brought over on Friday. Well then I played the card that I was told to play- that the cat needed vet care and would he be willing to take it to the vet because if he wasn't then, I simply wanted to trap the cat so I could take it to the vet. It was like magic. Suddenly, he told me that I could do whatever I wanted. And that was that.

I returned home that evening to figure out how I was going to trap a kitty in Queens. Had already researched a vet's clinic two blocks away from where kitty was. Fcat had promised that he would help me trap kitty even though we have never done anything like this before.

Monday morning, I received a phone call from the other rescue group Save Kitty Foundation. They had checked out the house and saw a grey kitty- which they almost put into their carrier until a woman opened her door & the cat went running inside. No orange kitty spotted but I'm sure that's because it was sleeping by the bushes. We are still playing phone tag, but I'm just so thankful that they tried to help. I'm sure with their help- orange kitty will be in a home in no time. I have already enlisted my best-friend, JK to be foster mom.

Anyway, sorry to tell you the longest story ever without a proper ending, but I believe that I am making progress. I have named orange kitty, Jack as in Jack O'Lantern because he's orange & his eyes glow (most orange tabbies are male, but Jack could be a Jackie). I hope to get him before Halloween which can be a dangerous holiday for outdoor cats, especially black ones because crazy miscreants do all sorts of horrible things.

I believe that Jack has had a rough time and he deserves a loving home. He looks like he's never played before in his life. It seems as though he wants contact but is afraid. I am determined to find him a warm & safe home. I am so swamped with work, but there are things that speak to you that you just cannot deny- obsession thy name is Jack.

19 comments:

urban vegan said...

ANOTHER amazing similarity. I have also been feeding a stray that lives around the corner from our apt--in fact, I just dropped off soem food and water this morning. He or she is black and fuzzy (like BooBoo) with a white "necklance." Your post was so helpful--I'm going to look into finding an organization to help. You are so sweet to help out the kitty.

There are a few ferals in my hood--but this is the only one whose makeshift "home" I have located.

Neva Vegan said...

I've been working on helping strays and ferals in my neighborhood. That little orange tabby is certainly lucky to have found you!

Vegan_Noodle said...

Wow, vko, what a story! I hope you can catch Jack and give him to a good home! Hope this story has a good ending! Let us know...

bazu said...

VKO, you have such a kind heart! I too feel for every stray cat I see- there aren't many in my neighborhood, but my friend who lives in the Bronx sees a lot and her heart breaks. I will pass along the info. about Save Kitty to her.
I hope that the orange kitty gets the happy ending he deserves.

VeggieGirl said...

so captivating!! aww, I do hope that Jack will be okay. You're doing such a great thing, by taking care of the little guy.

I read your comment on my blog: we use a few paper plates for serving/baked goods, and then "real plates" the majority of the time. Trust me, I AM concerned for the environment, and we're working harder to be as environmentally-friendly as possible. Thanks for expressing your concern! :0)

Vivacious Vegan said...

I completely know what you mean about people feeling attached to stray animals they feed but are otherwise in sad shape. It's so weird to me how possessive the act but yet they don't properly take care of the animals.

Kudos to you for all of your efforts. I can't wait to hear your happy ending.

the little one said...

You're wonderful for working to save this cat! I've trapped and worked with strays (including ferals) for awhile out here in Cali (and before in Syracuse, NY). Trapping isn't always supper easy. Ya kind of have to have patience. Some times they won't go into the trap unless they are super hungry and, unfortunately, that means you have to hold off feeding them until they're hungry enough to go into the trap (but it is for their best interest in the long run). Also, please have him tested for FIV before placing him. FIV cats can live without any problems but you should be cautious about placing an FIV+ cat with other cats. Also, sometimes vets will give you discounts if you are rescuing animals. Sorry if you already know all this stuff, just trying to be helpful. Feel free to contact me if I can be of any other help.

The Little Vegan said...

Oh I hope Jack's story will have a happy ending thanks to your generous spirit! Too many animals' stories don't end happily. It's horrible-- I wish I could adopt them all, because they all deserve a loving home :o/.

KleoPatra said...

YOU!!!!

...are incredibly sweet. Your compassion is compelling... thank you for caring about this stray, about your work, your passion... and about Heidi and what we've been goin' thru over here. i've been away dealing with "stuff," and i need to say

THANK YOU!!

for your words...

xo
Karen

Village Vegan said...

You are so caring and compassionate-- Jack is very lucky indeed that you are around. The ammount of time and dedication you are putting into rescuing him is really moving. I hope to hear the happy ending of this story soon!

Karen said...

Thank you for all that you are doing to help this poor kitty.

Theresa said...

I look forward to hearing the ending of this story. The world is a better place because people like you take time out of their busy schedules to help hungry looking kitties. I'm constantly in awe of your compassion and commitment.

Melisser; the Urban Housewife said...

Aww, while I like the blonde & I love redhead models, the orange kitty wins the cuteness contest! I admire your determination to find Jack a home, I hope everything works out!

Pink Theory said...

Awww, how wonderfully kind of you! I can't wait to hear the happy orange kitty ending.

Vegan Stiletto said...

You're such a wonderful person, and I'm sure Jack loves you very much for bringing him a meal and a drink. Goodluck trapping him and finding him a loving home. He sure deserves it.

Don't Get Mad Get Vegan! said...

Patience and perseverence prevail in the world of kitty trapping. Kudos to you on being so loving and doing everything you can to provide care and a home for little Jack.

all of our cats are strays, all six of 'em. they now lead luxurious indoor lives where the only horrific thing that happens to them is an occasional closed door they cannot magically pass thru and, of course, the annual trips to the evil vet. hehe.

we even took one from an apt complex after eyeing him for weeks outside and noticing he was not fixed and was drastically losing weight, and beginning to look dirty and uncared for. Now I relish every moment his fat beautiful buddha butt comes climbing up on the bed each night so snuggle.

can't wait to hear how this progresses. so much love to all of you!

Veganista said...

I read this post with great interest, vko, especially because my sister has just been in a similar situation with a cat near her home by the Sydney train tracks. She even managed to get him in a carry cage and into the spare room, but he pushed out the screen of the window one night and escaped! He showed up looking cheeky and smug in the usual place the next day, and she's just left food for him since then. He's clearly a domesticated cat, probably dumped, but perhaps not quite ready to be cooped up...anyway, good luck with this ginger boy.

scottishvegan said...

You are so sweet VKO. I am desperately curious to know what happened with Jack(ie). Please keep us updated :)

Emma said...

You are a bodhisattva. I'm glad to hear that "Orange Kitty" has so many people looking out for him, feeding him, giving him water, etc.

Sometimes, amid the chaos and cruelty of our world, we have to remind ourselves that it is, indeed, a beautiful place. So many people want to help, but they just don't have the resources. Kudos to you for all of your efforts. I am very pleased to know you. And thank you for your donation! I will send you pictures and updates of the doggies that your hard-earned and generously donated money has helped.

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