My Greek kitty crew

Friday, December 24, 2010

A prayer in the night

Dear friends,

Heartfelt wishes for a magic and still Christmas to you all. Whilst you share the blessed moments with your loved ones, may you also remember to spare a thought for Gods little people. Here is a special prayer I posted in the early beginnings of this blog, but I find it so fitting for a Christmas night that I'll post it here once more. The words are said to be composed by Albert Schweitzer as a young child, because he couldn't understand why animals weren't included in the nightly prayers he used to say with his mother. The early beginnings of a great humanitarian.


Hear our humble prayer, O God,
for our friends the animals,
especially for animals who are suffering;
for animals that are overworked,
underfed and cruelly treated;
for all wistful creatures in captivity
that beat their wings against bars;
for any that are hunted or lost or deserted
or frightened or hungry;
for all that must be put death.
We entreat for them all Thy mercy and pity,
and for those who deal with them
we ask a heart of compassion
and gentle hands and kindly words.
Make us, ourselves, to be true friends to animals,
and so to share the blessings of the merciful.

her beautiful artwork is so worth a visit

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Update on Tiny


Thanks so much to everyone for your sweet and loving prayers for Tiny. I'm quite overwhelmed at your kindness and truly moved that this little soul should matter to so many.  

As mentioned the weather turned bad, MUCH worse than anticipated. Not just a storm, but a hurricane with rain, hail, thunder and lightning and a wind chill factor well below zero for more than 36 hours in one straight row. I didn't sleep the first night because I could hear everything being thrown around outside and the wind was so strong that you could feel the brick walls vibrate with the worst gusts of wind. As you'll remember, I had created little shelters around the garden but I quite frankly wondered if they would still be there and intact the next morning. My only hope was one box under a covered terrasse that I had pinned down with heavy rocks. As you can imagine I couldn't wait for it to become light enough outside to go down and check on the little family.

I could barely open the door the next morning - the wind was that bad. But I made it down the hillside and found one squashed shelter under a semi-covered terrasse (actually the one they had initially taken to). I could see the one under the covered terrasse intact, but no sight of any kitties. I chose to just leave some food under the covered area, thinking that if they were (hopefully) around somewhere they would eventually smell the food. Just as I was about to leave mommy kittie appeared out of the box, looking rather disturbed and very startled. As this point I didn't dare disturb her more by looking into the box to see if the kittens might be there. I decided there was nothing for it but to open the door to a small appartment bedroom - the one attached to the covered terrasse. I removed all loose objects, covered the mattresses and left a small box stuffed with an old quilt and heavily secured a small opening in the door leading out to the covered terrasse. I left and hoped for the best... that they would discover it and not be scared off by the sense of confinement. 

Well, you can imagine how overjoyed and thrilled I was upon returning an hour later to find mommy kittie who rushed out to see who was approaching their new den - and two little kittens looking out from inside... YAY!!! It was evident though, that they were now very apprehensive about the sense of confinement and being cornered. So I quickly left some more food which they instantly went for as soon as I moved away.

As I went to sleep last night (still with hurricane-like gusts of wind) I felt thorroughly settled and warmed by the thougth of the little family tucked in and away from the horrid weather (and having had several meals!)

Today I spotted them happily playing inside (freezing cold outside) and they all came for their food. Tiny is a bit more timid than her brother, but she comes eventually. I'm happy to say that her 15 day antibiotic treatment came just in time to cure her before this change of weather. She had her last drops the same day as the hurricane started later in the day! She appears to be fine (no signs of coughing) and I hope and believe a warm shelter will have helped her recover completely. 

The above image is Tiny a few days before the hurricane. Doesn't she have a darling little face!?

Thursday, December 9, 2010

A tiny soul but a soul nevertheless

So I promised to get back to the story of the ninjas in my garden. As mentioned in an earlier post, it turns out they hadn't moved far away at all. I went away for a week and came back to the news that they were still tumbling around the garden. Well that was great news - it meant there would still a chance of getting closer for when it's time to neuter these irresistable little darlings. So I tried to get a bit closer and was distressed to find out that one of the kittens had a really bad cough. I wondered at first where that nasty sound came from - couldn't believe it came from such a tiny creature. 

Well, ignorantly I decided to give it a bit of time to see whether she might get better "natures way", but found no improvement at all. Only a nasty cough. So eventually I asked for my husbands help to get her in a cage. I actaully thought there was NO way we would catch her. BUT... the smell of Whiskas did the trick. She litterally walked into the cage herself. Quickly off to the vet and to the disappointing news that this little kitten didn't have priority, so she sat hugely distressed the entire day before the vet tried to handle her. Turns out she was too feisty for an examination. We got sent back home with the news that for sure it sounded very serious and was asked to give her a 15 day twice a day antibiotic treatment. Thank you! If the vet couldn't handle her, how on earth were we to give her an antibiotic treatment like that?? Initially we thought we had to keep her indoor, which lasted only for 24 hours. She was so distressed she didn't eat the entire time and she cried her heart out when she heard mommy kitties miaow the next morning. Healthwise it would probably have been better to keep her indoor, but I reasoned that her health would deteriorate rapidly without the milk and loving care of mommy kitty. To release her again was no doubt the right choice. She was estatic to be reunited with her mommy and brother. Now came the tricky bit. How to make sure she got the antibiotics. Well, back to some tasty wet Whiskas. Only now I had to make sure she got the right bowl. Remember, so far I hadn't been able to get close to these feral cats. I tried to sit real still and miraculously they instantly came for the food... only not in the right order. So I tried a bold thing. I swiftly lifted the little kitten and put her in front of the right bowl. She was so hungry it was as if she didn't notice a thing. Success!

It was as if the three of them knew I was trying to help Tiny, which we now call her (she was so much smaller than her brother Ninja, yes the big ninja fighter). To be honest there were a couple of days where we seriously doubted whether she would be there in the morning. She was in a real bad shape (felt so terrible I didn't get her off to the vet much faster). For the first week she just sat and could hardly catch her breath. She ran off if her brother wanted to play with her - it was just awful actually. There were moments where I wondered if it was more humane to bring her back to the vet to end her misery. But, and I say this tentatively, it appears she at last has gained some strength. She's not gasping for air all the time and only occassionally have some coughing fits. She's started playing with her brother again and is a real cheeky little trickster. 

Here it's Tiny is with her mommy at the beginning of the week where it became apparent that she was better. In the top image it's time for preening after breakfast. Mommy puts her entire face in the Whiskas bowl and therefore needs a real good facial afterwards! It's brother Ninja giving the facial whilst Tiny combs mommys tail.

Please keep your fingers crossed for this "Tiny" little soul. The weather is about to change (storm, rain and much colder) and I hope she's now strong enough to make a full recovery in spite of the weather. Made them several shelters - only hope they'll use them as the rain sets in.