So, Richard and I have been volunteering the past few weeks at the Faulkner County Humane Society (HSFC). For those of you that didn’t read about the couple in Vilonia who were hoarding cats, it’s a pretty sad story. Basically, an older couple had some cats and they multiplied… quickly… until there were over 100 living inside their trailer, and possible more outside. Unfortunately, the story gets sadder. The elderly woman passed away due to an injury, and her husband is now in a nursing home. The cats have become the responsibility of HSFC. If you have a cat or two, you can imagine what it’s like to have 50+ living in a trailer.
*update – 11-3-11: Just heard the older gentleman is now living in an apartment and doing well.
Taking care of the cats is no small feat. There is a team of 10 or so volunteers who take care of them, in addition to the medical staff of Companion Spay & Neuter clinic. Mind you, the clinic has taken all of this on in addition to their normal caseload.
Once a week, we head out to Springhill (between Conway and Greenbrier) and spend an hour or two having a “poopie party” that entails scooping litter, replacing it, feeding, medicating, and giving fresh water to all the cats… we may or may not spend a lot of time petting and cuddling. Especially in the kitty room.
Some of these cats have obviously had hard lives, and any time you have this many animals together without proper medical care (which they’re now receiving thanks to the staff at Companion) disease and sickness is bound to happen. Sadly, there’s a “sneezy kitty” room where the sick cats live. Below is one of our favorites – I’m thinking we should name him Weezy. He has the sweetest personality and loves attention. We’re hoping he gets better soon – he may have a new home at our house!
It takes us a couple of hours, but once we’re done, the world is a better place. The trailer smells much better. The cats are much happier. We feel like we’ve done something to make a difference, and it’s because we have. Since we’ve started taking care of the cats, many of them have been spayed & neutered, then subsequently adopted out. How awesome is that!? These cats are finding loving “furever homes” (sorry – I have a soft spot for pets…) that they never would have had if people weren’t investing some time and love into them.
I don’t say any of this to brag on myself – we actually didn’t come up with this – my dear friend Jennifer let me go with her once, and Richard and I felt like we had to help. The thing is, there’s plenty of room for more help. Currently, there are 3 or 4 shifts open of times for the cats be taken care of. The vet clinic is trying to keep up as best they can, but they need the help.
We need your help.
If a few people could step up and give up a couple hours out of their week, it could mean finding homes for these cats that much sooner.
There are other needs as well… you can imagine how much food and litter 50 cats go through… and how many toys! Any donations are appreciated. If you’re unable to help with time, please consider donating litter or food. If you can’t go get it, you can PayPal me the money and I’ll take care of it for you. In addition, all of these cats will eventually need homes. If you can provide a loving home for them, it’d be much appreciated (and Christmas is right around the corner! What kid doesn’t want a cat!?).
If you’re able to help in any way, please comment below or email me at dspurgers[at]gmail.com. I will get you in touch with the right people. If you can help in any way, please do! There are a lot of sweet kitties who would really appreciate it!