I was leaving school the other day by pushbike and as I came up the ramp, I saw a small kitten hanging around the legs of the security guard in a very affectionate manner. He was very small so I asked if there was a mother about. The security guard said that there wasn’t. I sighed… I knew what I had to do; take him home, get him cleaned up and try and find him a permanent home. I always find this one of the hardest things to do to help animals, because unlike being vegan, taking in animals that are in vulnerable situations requires quite a bit of work, investment of money and time, the fact that you have to be careful that your own animals don’t get sick from any potential illnesses the street animals might have and the worry that you might not be able to find a home for them. For us, it isn’t an option to have more pets. It’s also never a good time for an animal to need rescuing. You’ve always got to be somewhere, got something to do or you’re really tired. However, I knew I couldn’t walk away from this. I went back into school, found a cardboard box and popped him in it. It was a funny sight. I had a backpack on, my handbag over the handle bars and this box under my arm trying to ride one handed. Luckily, I don’t live far from school. While I was riding one of my colleagues, Sally caught me up on her pushbike and asked what was in the box. She was surprised to hear me say it was a kitten! I knew she was in the market for a new kitten, but as George (as Seb would later name him) tried to pop his head out of the box, she said she’d take him, but could not until Sunday. I couldn’t have been more pleased.
I got him home, broke the news to Seb and we got him settled in our second kitchen. It’s a great space for an animal holding area. Lots of light, not too hot, windows from our regular kitchen to the second one so that we can keep a close eye on him. I was still a bit grossed out to get too close to him as strays can have many diseases, mites, fleas etc. We gave him some attention and let him settle.
I had to go to school the next day, but afterwards, Sally (his new mom) and I took him to the vet. His prognosis was good. He had lots of worms (easily treatable), no mites, normal temperature, no skin fungi, dirty ears, all the normal things. The vet recommended we keep him away from other cats for a week so that any disease George might be incubating would surface before being introduced to other cats. I’ve been stung with this situation before. I brought home a stray during my university days which then gave my vaccinated cat, cat flu. My cat pulled through, but it was terrible. Sally bought him food in readiness for Sunday. I then saw the first vet bill for the treatment. $12. I can rescue lots of kitties and puppies if it is only ging to cost that much.
We brought him back home. We’ve been playing together lots and I’ve been enjoying kitten time before he goes to Sally’s on Sunday. This experience has taught me that it isn’t that hard to take in an animal. The rewards have far outweighed the costs.
Here’s cutie pie George. 🙂