Saturday, July 13, 2013


Things had been relatively quiet at the shelter -- too quiet to last, i knew.

And i was right.

First, a bit of backstory on one of the current situations.  A couple of years ago, every rescue and the animal control center and everyone else began to lose kittens.  They would appear fine, then throw up a couple of times.  Within twenty-four hours, they would become lethargic, sometimes have seizures, and die.

The diagnosis was panleukopenia, which we vaccinate for, but at that time not normally until they are about 4 weeks old, then we vaccinate every 2 weeks after that until they are 3 months or adopted.  When i got the news, i and others began a program of vaccinating the moment we got them in, even if they were newborns, giving them only half a dose if they were under 4 weeks, then re-vaccinating every week.

The virus can live on surfaces for up to a year, too, unless you bleach the tar out of every surface and steam clean and sanitize carpets.  Because of the decrepit condition of my house, i could only sanitize and bleach and steam clean so much, but i did everything the kittens go near as much as i could, pouring bleach in cracks and crevices,  and i implemented the early vaccinations and the deaths stopped.

So i walked into the shelter to do my regular shift to find out that two kittens that have been returned from a pet store adoption area have died of panleuk, one other was returned for crusty eyes that are healing but has probably been exposed, and one came back with ringworm which wasn't noticed until he had been in the kitten room for 3 days.

Also, a lady had come in and returned a cat, claiming she adopted it from us two years ago.  Because her name was in the database as someone who had adopted from us, it was taken.  Come to find out, the cat she adopted from us was gray, and that was six years ago.  This one's microchip identified it as an animal control adoption, two years ago, and it is orange!

Her story was interesting, and distracted the intake person into not noting the discrepancies until it was too late.  It seems the first cat she adopted was when she lived with her father, and we believe he still has it.  This one, from two years ago, ran away a year ago.  It was found about a week ago, and she got it back, and took it home, where she and her husband now have custody of five children under age five from his negligent sister.  The cat apparently doesn't like little children, which was discovered the hard way.

He does, however, love adults, so despite the fact that he should be returned elsewhere, we will find him a good home, with only older children or none at all.

And to top everything off, the air conditioner wasn't cooling, and the sewer is backing up and one of the loos, at times, smells like it.

That pet store adoption area needs to be emptied and bleached within an inch of its existence, but these kittens have all been more than fully vaccinated, and with the modified live vaccine, too, which is supposed to be the best one there is.  So we have a dilemma, we aren't sure we can adopt any kittens out right now, because if this is a new strain or some of them didn't develop immunity, we are doing to end up with them getting sick and dying in their new homes.

In fact, one family called today to say the perfectly healthy kitten adopted on July 5 died after throwing up once, then getting lethargic, then having a seizure, and all within just a few hours.  They are going to be allowed to pick out another kitten at no charge, of course, but we want them to wait until we can be sure this isn't going to happen again.

The sewer problem is going to have to wait for Monday, because it's not enough of an emergency to warrant calling someone in when rates are higher on a weekend.  As long as nothing is actually coming into the building, it can hold.

The A/C is a cat of a different color.  We can't have the cats in that kind of heat, so the HVAC people were called in.  They found and fixed the problem while i worked my shift.

It seems that someone had forgotten to check the date on the white board and follow the schedule for changing the filter, which was filthy, as were the condenser coils.  As many cats as we have in that place, we sweep up enough hair every day to knit ourselves a litter of kittens if we ever needed one, the filter needs changing every two weeks at least, and it had been over two months.

As i noted, with the A/C guy standing there, it's cheaper to replace filters than pay for repairs.  He nodded and said, "Absolutely!  I agree with that, it's cheaper to replace them than hire me!"  So i hope they take it to heart.

For reasons of dust, dander, and fur, as well as being able to isolate sick animals, that is one place that doesn't need to go unfiltered.

Today is

Art Fair on the Square -- Madison, WI, US (one of the Midwest's largest juried art fairs; through tomorrow)

Bald In - Bald Out Day -- sponsored by Bald Girls Do Lunch; if men can be bald and brazen, then women and children who cannot grow hair should bring bald INto their lives, and never feel on the OUTs!

Barbershop Music Appreciation Day -- anniversary of the founding of Sweet Adelines International

Beans and Franks Day

Bohemian Club Annual Rites begin -- Bohemian Grove, CA US (if you are into conspiracy theories, this is supposedly when and where the male movers and shakers of the world meet for two weeks and decide the fate of the world for the next 12 months; the members of the club, including former presidents and other high level officials, do meet for a couple of weeks this time of year to have, among other things, a Cremation of Care ceremony)

Carver Day -- George Washington Carver National Monument, Diamond, MO, US

Circus City Festival -- Peru, IN, US (did you ever want to run off and join the circus?  This is the week kids age 7-21 get to do just that, so go watch and have fun with them!  through the 20th)

Embrace Your Geekness Day -- sponsored by Wellcat Holidays, celebrate your love of online dungeon games, comic books, or dressing up like a vampire

Fairfest -- Hastings, NE (a parade today, and starting on Monday a full week of traditional county fair fun plus world class stage entertainment)

Feast of Kalimat (Words) -- Baha'i Faith

Fool's Paradise Day -- a day to figure out how a fool can achieve paradise?  or how it can be paradise if it is full of fools?

Galicnik Svadba -- Galicnik, Macedonia (wedding festival, when one lucky couple gets to be married in a traditional "Galichka" style wedding, through tomorrow)

Go West Day -- commemorates Horace Greeley's "Go West, young man, and grow up with the country."

Gruntled Workers Day -- sponsored by Wellcat Holidays; those of us who are gruntled, as opposed to the disgruntled, should unite and pass along some "great work" compliments to those doing a good job

International Puzzle Day -- some sites say Jan. 29, but today is Erno Rubik's birth anniversary

La Retraite Aux Flambeaux -- France (night watch, before Bastille Day)

National French Fries Day

Obon (Ulambana) -- Buddhist; Shinto (Festival of the Lanterns, a time of honoring the ancestors, a reunion of them with the living; through the 15th, although Obon festivals are held on various dates in July at temples throughout the world)

Omaha Railroad Days -- celebrating all things track and train, through tomorrow

Pori Jazz Festival -- Pori, Finland (a major international music event with world class performances; through the 21st)

Sodbuster Days -- Fort Ransom, ND, US (learn how rural North Dakotans lived in the early 1920s; through tomorrow)

Sourdough River Festival -- Edmonton, Alberta, Canada (Float Fest and a big water fight! through tomorrow)

Statehood Day -- Montenegro

St. Henry the Emperor's Day (Patron of childless people, disabled people, dukes, handicapped people, kings, people rejected by religious orders, physically challenged people; Bamberg, Germany; Basel, Switzerland; Benedictine Oblates; against sterility)

St. Joel the Prophet's Day (Old Testament prophet of the Book of Joel)

Stone House Day -- Hurley, NY, US (tour of several 250+ year old stone houses within 150-yards of each other)

Birthdays Today

Cheech Marin, 1946
Erno Rubik, 1944
Harrison Ford, 1942
Patrick Stewart, 1940
Jack Kemp, 1935
Bob Crane, 1928
Dave Garroway, 1913
Nathan Bedford Forrest, 1821
Julius Caesar, BC100

Today in History

Capt James Cook begins 2nd trip (Resolution) to South Seas, 1772
William Wordsworth, on a walking tour through the Wye Valley, visited the ruins of Tintern Abbey and a few miles further on composed a poem about them, 1798
Greek War of Independence: Greeks defeated Ottoman forces at Thermopylae, 1822
Henry R Schoolcraft discovers the source of the Mississippi River, 1832
After 9,957 unnumbered patents, the U.S. Patent Office issues Patent No. 1, for locomotive wheels, 1836
Queen Victoria becomes the first British monarch to live at Buckingham Palace in London, 1837
First day of the New York Draft Riots in response to President Abraham Lincoln's Enrolment Act of Conscription, 1863
Horace Greeley publishes his editorial advising young men to "Go West, young man, go west and grow up with the country," 1865
PT Barnum's American Museum was destroyed in one of the most spectacular fires in New York City's history, 1865
Gold was discovered near Cochrane, Ontario, Canada, 1909
The British airship R34 lands in Norfolk, England, completing the first airship return journey across the Atlantic in 182 hours of flight, 1919
Alexander Butterfield reveals the existence of the Nixon tapes to the special Senate committee investigating the Watergate break in, 1973
The Live Aid benefit concert, a telecast fundraising concert for famine relief in Ethiopia, was held in London and Philadelphia, as well as other venues such as Sydney and Moscow, 1985
American Thoroughbred racehorse Cigar wins his 16th consecutive top-class race, the first horse to do so since Triple Crown winner citation, 1996
Researchers reveal two studies showing the antiretroviral drugs prescribed to treat AIDS can also prevent HIV infections, 2011


  1. So many thing must be taken into consideration for the care of all these cats and kittens. I doubt I would have the stamina for it but I'm thankful for people like you would give these poor animals the chance for a happy life.

  2. I hope you work out all of the repairs that are needed. I too thank you for caring for these lost babies and finding them a forever home. Bless you.

    Have a fabulous day. :)

  3. Thank you, Stephen and Sandee. Every time a happy family leaves with a new cat or kitten to take to a forever home, it's worth it.

  4. Blorf! 2 months?? I would say there needs to be a big old note about not letting the filter go unchecked! Images of a hairball shaped filter... eeew...

    Hoping that the illness is a fluke, and you can go back to sending kittens into homes again!