Tomorrow I'll be trapping five dumpster kitties. My new friend Heather won't be able to help me, she has trapping of her own to do, but one of her friends will be coming over to get me started. Monday is Feral Cat Day and the event where I can take five kitties to get spayed/neutered for free is called "The Big Fix".
Yesterday runnergirl and I went to pick up the traps I'm renting for the kitties. I had to go to a woman's house who keeps a bunch in her garage and rents them out for these types of events. When giving me directions, she guided me to her streeat and then described her house as "the dumpy one on a double lot." Boy, she wasn't kidding. I was skeptical of this assessment since the nieghborhood is very cute. Her house contained appliances on the lawn and several pieces of furniture littered with cats. Runnergirl and I got out of her truck and were immediately greeted by a cat with no tail. There were several cats with the tips of their ears missing, the signature of feral cat fixing and quite a few rubbing up against us. She came out and proved herself to be the quintessential crazy cat lady. Runnergirl and I got the traps, went to load them in the bed of truck only to find a stowaway- one had jumped in her truck bed. The lady said she had 17 of them and I could tell by the noises coming from her windows she had several dogs too. Runnergirl and I then took a solemn oath to never EVER let each other get that bad.
Today I straightened up and swept the balcony for when the kitties are trapped. I lined up all five traps to see if they would fit, and they do. Now it's a matter of loading the traps tomorrow with some tuna and waiting. Early Monday morning Heather's friend will come back with her minivan and load 'em up and move 'em out.
In other news, Heather also said she talked to a maintenance man from my complex who was thrilled to hear someone would be humanely caring for the kitties and helping their situation. It feels great to have someone on my side who works here. The maintenance men are more involved than the management, so I had to breathe a sigh of releif and I don't feel like I have to hide anymore when going back there.
Lastly, I am feeling a little blue about tomorrow. I have developed a relationship with those cats unlike any other I've had with animals before. It has caused me to grow up a lot to care for these cats while getting nothing in return. I can't snuggle them or groom them or feel their weight on me while I'm sleeping. I've learn to keep my distance and find love in my heart anyway. The most rewarded I feel is when I am about halfway down the parking lot and a see the half dozen or so who come out to greet me. It's funny how such a small gesture from a cat (who let's face it, think themselves far superior to us) can mean so much. They run out and cry and run circles around me (withouth letting me touch them) and I try to shoo them out of sight, while giggling and feeling flattered. Their bravery makes me almost positive those will be the five that wander into the traps first, and it breaks my heart that I will case this trauma to them. I know it's for the best. Really, I do. But will things be the same after this? I know it's selfish of me, but their trust means a lot to me. I just have to keep in mind how much this will help in the long run.
More after the Big Fix!