Like Peas & Carrots

In June, 700 cats were seized from the largest hoarding case The Humane Society has ever seen in the United States.
This happened just a few miles from my home.

According to the article, "People who needed to give up their cat and who visited Haven Acres likely got to see only the part of the facility that showed it in its best light, Animal Services Director David Flagler said.

"They thought they were taking their cats to a country club environment, and even some of our own staff thought the conditions were much better than what was found," Flagler said."

Those of you who have been reading my blog for a while will understand that I followed this case closely. We are animal lovers and rescue advocates, and have done a lot of volunteering and fostering throughout the past few years. I also have a personal connection to the situation; I went to school with the daughter of the man who was arrested in this case. I've talked to her on Facebook about the situation. She cut all ties with her 'father' years ago, and was so happy and relieved to hear that the couple was finally arrested.

So I'm sure it will not come as any surprise to any of you that, when they announced that the cats were now available for adoption, I felt compelled to get involved.

This weekend, The Humane Society held a huge event called the Florida Feline 550. Out of the 700 cats seized from the hoard, 550 were available for adoption this weekend. Many of the cats had to be euthanized, some are still undergoing medical treatment, and some are being held to be used as evidence in the criminal case.
The rest, five hundred and fifty cats, were at our local Humane Society, looking for homes.
And naturally, I knew one of them had to be mine.

It wasn't hard to find a cat to adopt; what was hard was to narrow it down to only one. But we already have four cats; one was my limit.

{she loves MY pillow.}

And once again, those of you who know me will not be surprised that the cat I chose has only one eye, and one kidney. I gravitate towards the animals that most people wouldn't want. There were many beautiful cats there. It's astounding how wonderful they look now, considering the condition they were in when the HSUS found them. One tiny cat that I really liked has gained three pounds since she was brought in. She only weighs about 5 pounds now. Three months of good care makes a world of difference.

I'm a huge fan of Forrest Gump, so when I saw a cage containing two cats with the labels "Forrest" and "Jennie", I naturally looked in. And that's when I saw my sweet one-eyed girl.

After being reassured by the vet that her kidney issues wouldn't require expensive medical care that we just can't afford, I knew Jennie was our girl. (I'm not sure if we'll keep the name or change it.)

She was born with two kidneys, but while at the "cat haven", she became pregnant and got an infection, involving her uterus. When the UF Vet School opened her up, they found severe infection and a mummified kitten. There were adhesions attaching it to her kidney, which is why it had to be removed as well as the reproductive organs. But she will be able to live just fine with one kidney. She was born with two eyes as well, but one ruptured due to untreated infection.

To me, she's beautiful, just the way she is.

She's settling in well. She explores when she feels like it, and hides when she feels like it, but mostly hangs out on my bed, on my pillow, looking out the window.

I hope she understands that she is safe now. She'll never be stuck in a cage again with minimal food and water. She'll always have a home, and food, and love.

Linking up with Unknown Mami's Sunday in my City.

Unknown Mami

The brand new meme over at Miss Elaine-ous Life!


Tammie said...

ive been following this story online and i had a feeling youd get involved somehow. you are great that way.

and your new baby is adorable. might i suggest a middle name of 'blink' or 'squint'? :)

Amy @ Clan Carlson said...

Beautiful kitty! I'm so glad these cats were rescued and given a second (or in many cases, third) chance. I'd be horrified if I though I'd surrended my beloved pet to a good home, only to find out that the place I had carefully selected had been raided by the humane society. One just doesn't know these days.

Working Mommy said...

I am not a cat person - but I do understand your love of animals and the need to help them. It is nice to know that there are still people in this world who have hearts large enough to care for those animals who might not be seen as "the perfect pet" by others. Congrats on Jennie's new home!!


Erin said...

Oh she is absolutely precious! Aww I hope she settles in nicely!

Alison@Mama Wants This said...

You're just wonderful!! She will have the life she deserves now with you and your family.

C said...

awwww, i had not heard of this. you are an angel to do what you do. she is so pretty, i am sure she feels the love in your household.

i CANNOT tolerate anyone who hurts innocent animals... i wish there were a law that whatever someone does to a pet, it should be done to them as well.
f**** bastards.

Amy said...

Hope Jennie settles in well. I had not seen or heard about this before. 700 cats! Wow. We took in 2 kitties and while they amuse me - that's the limit around here. Well, unless they're outside kitties.

Enjoy your new ruler ;)

Furry Bottoms said...

I fell in love with her at first picture you posted. What a pretty cat! I sure hope she'll settle in, but you know it'll take some time. I am glad you found a cat to add to your brood! :)

Brandy@YDK said...

awwww she's a sweetie pie. thats just so sad when animals are mistreated. poor babies.

Kirsten said...

She is a pretty girl. Glad you have such a big heart to take in the ones most wouldn't want.

blueviolet said...

Your heart is beautiful. I'm so glad she's found a home with you where she'll be forever loved and protected.

Alexis AKA MOM said...

My dear you are so amazing and carrying. What a heart wrenching story I hadn't heard it. I'm so glad there are amazing ppl like you that help out right away.

Your new baby is beautiful and she is lucky to have the best mom :)

Galit Breen said...

Good for you for making a difference! Truly.

Stef said...

Holy cow. How can people be so mean? Animals have feelings too. That is sad. But good for you for stepping up and loving her. She is very lucky.

Debby@Just Breathe said...

Jennie is so cute. You are just so sweet taking her into your life. How can people do this to animals, so glad they arrested them.

Hopes@Staying Afloat! said...

Aww...she looks so adorable! You are so kind to bring her into your home. She will have such a great life with your family!

Tara R. said...

I'm surprised that I haven't heard about this story. I only have two cats, I cannot imagine more than 700. I'm glad homes for these poor animals were found.

Jennie is adorable. I can't think of a more loving home she could go to than to live with yours. Congrats on your new furbaby.

Liz (Loving Mom 2 Boys) said...

What a heart breaking story, but what a beautiful kitty!! Her eye is AMAZING!!

Unknown Mami said...

She is beautiful and so are you.

My baby only has one kidney and she is just perfect.