Yesterday I told you about Nisha and the rest of her West Woods Family all living in the two small rooms in the kennel. Those four joined the four who already permanently live there. This is a crowd. It seems now that I won’t be able to separate these four family members from each other. They sleep next to each other and all four play together. So why not move the whole group to the cathouse together, right? Well, let me keep explaining.
One day in November, I went into the cathouse and couldn’t find Sallie. I finally found her hiding under one of the couches. This is not unusual for Sallie. But it is also not good. Sallie seems to be a cat who gets picked on. And then she starts hiding. I think this makes the “bully” kitties go after her even more. I’ve had to move Sallie to my kennel office more than once to give her a break from the cats in the cathouse. Then the problem becomes Sallie. She ends up bullying some of the kitties living in the kennel office. Eventually, I move her back to the cathouse. But then it starts all over again. Right now she’s in the kennel.
So currently, these two small rooms are home to the four who live there permanently, the four West Woods family members, and Sallie. That’s too many. In fact, two weeks ago, Duchess started pulling her fur out. My vets advised me that there is nothing wrong with Duchess – physically. Her problem is stress. I immediately knew what kind of stress – TOO MANY CATS.
The question is still – Why not move the West Woods Family to the cathouse?
About a month ago, I started noticing that when I was feeding in the cathouse, all of the cats were gathering around to eat except one. Peter Pan wouldn’t come down from wherever he was perched. I also noticed that his sister, Tinkerbell, would only eat in one spot – at the only bowl on a shelf open on both ends. Each day I would go pluck Peter Pan off his high perch and set him beside his sister at the food bowl she preferred. They ate. That was that.
Then about a week into this routine, I saw that someone had urinated right on that shelf. The shelf is covered in a fleecy material so I knew this would be trouble. Once fabric is urinated on by a cat it usually keeps happening in the same spot. And sure enough - each day the same. I would come in, feed, and all would race to various food bowls except Pan. I would place him on the shelf with his sister and the two would eat together. The shelf would be urinated on. And after a few days of that, we had more than urine in that spot – if you get my drift. I started assuming that Peter Pan was doing this.
Luckily, I got the information I needed. One day while Pan and Tink were eating in their spot, two of the bigger male cats (Peter Pan is a small male) jumped up on the shelf and chased Pan off. Then they continued to chase him and he ran up a cat tree and perched as high as he could. So. I had worried that Pan might be getting bullied. Here was the proof.
I have always kept a cat cage in a corner of the second room of the cathouse. I hate to cage a cat. But I had to put Peter Pan someplace where he could eat in peace (and feel safe). What happened when I put him in the cage broke my heart into two pieces. He went immediately to the water bowl in the cage and drank for five solid minutes. It hit me. There are two large water bowls in the cathouse – one in each room. BOTH are on the floor. Peter Pan was LIVING as high as he could get in the cathouse. He wasn’t eating from food dishes on the floor; he wasn’t drinking from the water bowls on the floor; and now I realized he wasn’t going to the floor to use a litter box – he was staying on the shelf. I felt so bad for him I couldn’t stop thinking about it the rest of that day.
Then, just a few days ago, I watched two of the female cats chase Tinkerbell under a couch. I got to thinking about how Tink won’t eat anywhere except at the one bowl that sits on a shelf with open ends – so she can escape her predators in whatever direction she needs to. I put her in the cage with Peter Pan. If you think a cage is too confining for one cat, it’s even worse for two. So I came up with a way to build a tiny area in the corner where the cage used to sit.
Husband built the enclosure for me.
The enclosure is great. But it’s just not enough. It’s too small for any cat to live there permanently. Two cats in the enclosure works, but it’s crowded. Four cats (as in the case of The West Woods Family) is definitely way too many. Anyway, I can’t move anyone else into that enclosure while Tink and Pan are there. I could move them to the kennel, but then that area stays overcrowded. And what about Sallie?
So here it is, Friends. I need one more room at the cathouse. I need to add on. This would provide that ONE more area I keep needing over and over and over for all kinds of situations. My goal has always been to provide a quality life for whatever cats end up here with me. The ultimate goal is always a wonderful forever home. Since I cannot give the Winnie’s Wish cats the home, love, and attention they need and deserve, the least I can do while they’re here waiting is to make sure life is safe, healthy, and comfortable.
I need $5000. Does anyone out there think it's possible to raise that kind of money? I’m thinking about researching Go Fund Me and Crowdrise after the holidays. What Winnie’s Wish needs is One More Room.
Have a great weekend. See you next week.