Life as a Cat Rescuer: A Journey Full of Challenges and Emotions

The following story has been submitted by Greg K via email.

Hello – I live in Oregon, USA. I have been a friend to animals all my life and am now 65. Currently I have 5 cats. I have fostered and helped many abandoned and abused cats over the years with the help of my life partner.

The journey has been one of many challenges and emotions. I have felt the greatest outrage for what I’ve seen inflicted upon innocent creatures by the very people they trusted and relied upon for help. The journey has taken turns into great sadness also when realization comes I could do nothing to help another new found struggling cat. When able to save a little feline refugee I would feel such great joy. It was a sense of relief and joy of epic size in my soul for the struggling little ones I found.

I never intended to become what a coworker dubbed me – ‘a crazy cat guy’, but taking in so many cats has just simply come to me and I embraced it. It was difficult to do as I love travel and being outdoor active. Life was adjusted. I could not just turn my back and walk away.

All of our rescued cats have and will remain indoors and they have little or no interest in going outside. I have always maintained that we stay in their home. I believe that attitude has made it a shared environment that they feel comfortable to be who they are. That attitude along with a cat themed home has helped support our medically challenged cats feel they have found a refuge.

I can spend a few hours daily caring for my feline family as they all have physical and mental conditions brought about through abuse and abandonment. I am always amazed at the obvious appreciation shown and how close our friendships have become. The conditions they struggle with pushed me to read and learn more about their physiology and how best to help them. It is a journey full of great successes and very difficult conclusions

You know I never intended to be what a coworker has called me – ‘a crazy cat guy’. After taking in some struggling cats I noticed that others just seem to know that our house is safe and they seek me out. Our last fully integrated kitty into our home wandered onto our back porch to get away from a bad situation and insisted to stay. She had an eye that appeared to be so damaged it would need to be removed. After intensive care first by myself with antibiotics I had on hand leftover from another cat’s needs, and secondly the assistance from a local animal shelter with eye surgery, she now has use of her eye again!

The journey continues. I am now looking at retirement this year, and thinking, ‘I sure hope I do not have to see more small ones in need.‘ Shelters are now facing maximum capacity and reduced funding. I will now also have limits to my ability to help as well. We all need to realize when we cannot do more, but that has me so concerned with the way the current state of world affairs is affecting the choices people are making. I hope we all think before taking action. I cannot understand how a person can throw a cat out like trash after taking them in, provide all needs with a stable life and home thus making the cat fully reliant and dependent on them. So cruel.

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