Cat Sanctuary

RAPS and the Cats of Many Colours

After a summer when it seemed that we were being overrun with little black kittens, it’s good to be welcoming an assortment of coloured cats.

Kiwi – MW

The Last Chance Cat Ranch in Lethbridge AB faced a crisis when the owner had health issues that necessitated a move back to her family in Edmonton. The shelter had been in existence since 2003, and over the years she had helped save more than three thousand cats.  Sadly, nobody was willing to take over her shelter and she reached out to other rescues to relocate as many cats as possible.  We have nine of them with us, and all are settling down to various degrees.

Melon – MW

Seven of them were initially put into the Connor building.  Tabby Ziggy was given a cage to herself. She was not happy about the move, about the other cats around, about life in general….

Ziggy – LBF

Now she’s out, she still mostly hides behind a drape and growls, and she objects to other cats looking in on her. She’s going to be quite a project for the Kitty Comforters – we don’t know her background, but she’s very distrustful.

Honeydew – MW

The other six knew each other well, and were paired for mutual comfort.  Black cats Salem and Obelix initially shared space, but Obelix was discovered to be FIV+, and was relocated. Three of the others were calicos, coming to us as Melon, Honeydew and Kiwi; the fourth was Siamese-mix Shiver.  Salem, Honeydew and Kiwi were released first and ready to explore; they’re a little wary about humans, but sufficiently food-motivated that they will come and feed at the table where the wet-food plates are being prepared.  Kiwi is the darkest of the three – a very pretty girl who is interested in the area around her. She appears to be tolerating the other cats, and has settled comfortably on one of the shelves as her base.

Kiwi – LL

Her buddy Honeydew also appears relaxed, and was quick to discover the above-cages area, scaling the mesh to find her beloved Salem – the two can be found snuggling together. The cage-top cats – Layla, Celine, Spooky and the others – are all a pretty easy-going bunch, and the newcomers have settled in with them in no time.

Salem getting a little lovin’ from Honeydew – KN

Melon and Shiver were caged a little longer for some dental attention, but are now out and about in the front courtyard.  Shiver appeared the most wary of the group, but is no longer looking as spooked as when he arrived, and he and Melon chirp happily at each other.  Caging cats in pairs may give them less room (though our cages are pretty roomy) but it often gives them comfort and confidence in a new situation. Melon and Honeydew look pretty similar; we’re guessing that the three girls are litter-mates.

Shiver is another handsome blue-eyed boy – MW

Two other cats came with them, but like Obelix, they have gone into the New Aids pen, since they are FIV+. Sadly, too many people don’t understand that the FIV virus doesn’t make cats any less adoptable – and these two are prime candidates for a home. Orange & white Dango is insatiably curious – he wants into everything, and is constantly on the move. He’s very friendly with people and at ease with the other cats.

Austin & Dango – KN

Black Austin is definitely a people-cat; he loves to lap-sit, and he has the characteristic erect tail of a happy and confident cat.  We would love to see more of our FIV+ cats go to their own homes; unlike the FeLV virus, which does affect the cat’s health, FIV is a virus that causes AIDS in cats; however, there is a long asymptomatic period before AIDS occurs and care can prolong this period. Many of the FIV cats live long lives, and may never actually develop full-blown AIDS.

Austin – KN

Austin and Dango are used to living together, but since they are relaxed and happy, they might do well with a non-aggressive FIV- cat or with a dog; like all RAPS cats , we would want them to be indoor-only pets. Black Obelix is very shy and will not be an adoption candidate.

Dango – KN

There are many privately-run shelters across the country, often set up by cat-loving people who may not have a succession plan for their beloved cats when health issues intervene. There aren’t many shelters who can take on nine cats at a time, but RAPS is glad to be able to welcome these newcomers to the Sanctuary family.

Blog by Brigid Coult
Photos by Lisa Brill-Friesen, Leslie Landa, Karen Nicholson, Michele Wright