Kandy’s Fight

We’ve taken in a lot of kittens this year. Mostly from local shelters. Kandy is one of those that we took in …

She arrived at a shelter at just a few days old with her two siblings – their eyes weren’t even open yet. A volunteer bottle fed them for a few days and then they were put with a surrogate mom – a semi-feral that ended up at the shelter overflowing with milk. April took to those kittens like they were her own … for about three weeks. We think her milk dried up – maybe her babies (that weren’t turned into the shelter with her) were older? We’ll never know. Regardless, April essentially said “no more milk kits, I’m done”.

So, Kandy and her siblings were bottle fed again and then transitioned to kitten food. April was placed in another foster after being tested for FeLV/FIV. Positive. Crap. Did she transfer the disease(s) to the kittens? We don’t know yet – they are still too young and small to test.

Kandy’s siblings were moved to a different foster while Kandy remained in the original foster home as she was never the greatest eater. That foster is me – who normally doesn’t do “bottle babies” but made an exception for this little sweetie pie.

But now Kandy is fighting for her life. She’s had a fever for a week (which does appear to finally have broken), an abscess in her mouth/throat and an ear infection. I’ve been giving her fluids and syringe feeding her. Today she decided she wanted to eat some dry food – and eat she did!

I told you, she’s a fighter.

We’ve been to four veterinarians. We’ve been told we should consider euthanizing because she is probably immuno-compromised. We said no. She’s eating, purring and generally being the sweetest kitten you’ve ever met.

I’ve been told that I’m possibly too emotionally attached.

Can you look into these eyes and tell me that you wouldn’t be attached either?



And so what if I’m emotionally attached? Shouldn’t I be. Shouldn’t I see each one of these animals as a life that deserves every chance?

We’re a small group with no building/facility of our own. We have two awesome adoption centers that allow us to keep more adoptables in the public view than some rescue groups. And we have a few very dedicated foster homes that take in as many as they can handle. Not to mention our volunteers that keep the adoption centers sparkling and the cats there entertained and socialized.

Could we spend the money on others that need rescuing? Hmmm, but we’ve already committed to Kandy. How do I look at her, as she eats her dry food with her head tilted to one side because of her ear, and tell her “sorry Kandy, I need to use our money on another kitty even though you are fighting and (hopefully) responding to the three medicines that I’m giving you”. ??? How can I do that???

Animal rescue is an emotional business. Lives are literally at stake. When we formed Karma Cat + Zen Dog we immediately aligned ourselves with the No Kill philosophy. We only take in what we can handle and we try like to heck to place them into loving homes as quickly as possible so that we can take in more. We don’t make money doing this – on the contrary.

And so we may spend a bunch of money on Kandy and I know our donors and friends will support our decision – emotionally and/or financially. And Kandy might not win this battle but as long as she continues to fight, we will fight along side her. We will not let her suffer but we will give her every chance to make it.

Without us (and by “us” I’m including every adopter, donor, volunteer & supporter), and our emotions, these animals would not have a chance at living. I truly believe that. And I truly believe that we can make a difference – in fact, I’m sure we already have.

Thank you to all that are helping us make a difference by:

  • adopting (another and another)
  • referring us to your friends for adoptions
  • networking for us – we love facebook and twitter
  • fostering – all you need is a spare room … even a bathroom will do for a kitten!
  • donating … food, money, time

I’ll end this post with one of my favorite sayings:
“You may not change the world by saving one animal, but for that one animal, you will change its world”.

Kandy & Christie

Kandy & Christie

Fighting for Kandy,

  • http://www.michellearlotta.com Michelle Arlotta

    kandy is a wonderful kitty… totally worth fighting for and loving with all your heart… sending her some strength!

  • Christie

    update 6.30.11 – kandy will stay on antibiotics and ear drops for another 10 days. she’ll be re-evaluated at that time to see what the next step is … she may need surgery if she has a mass in her throat and/or ear.

    thanks for all the kind words and wishes – one look in this kit’s eyes and you can see how grateful she is!

  • Meredith ?

    I love this, you made me cry!!! Kandy is in my prayers, I know in my heart she a fighter and she’ll pull through!

  • Christie

    update 7.6.11 – kandy is making progress! she is eating much better, has a lot more energy and her head tilt isn’t as severe. we’re cautiously optimistic! :)

  • Christie

    update 7.14.11 – kandy had a seizure on 7.11.11 but has rebounded and improved since then. her appetite & energy level have improved … and her head tilt has decreased. she even played with some toys for the first time in weeks today … like, really played … as a kitten should play! she is having a little constipation issues so we are giving her a little supplement to hopefully help with that.

    this kitten is such a fighter, it’s amazing.

    she is not completely in the clear yet but we all have more hope now than we did several days ago. she may still need surgery on her ear … and we do not know her FeLV/FIV status yet. right now we are focusing on keeping her nourished and hydrated … she needs to put on weight to have a safer surgery.

    thanks for all the well wishes for our sweet little kandy!

  • http://profiles.google.com/christie.arlotta Christie Arlotta

    7.30.11 – kandy was tested for FeLV and FIV on thursday. positive times two. boo. this possibly explains why she was so sick at the beginning of july. we are not giving up on this sweet little girl. after we have her spayed we will look to find her a loving forever home that can be extra vigilant about keeping her healthy. in the meantime, she will continue to romp and play in her own private suite in her foster home – with me.


  • Pingback: Adopting Just One Kitten » Karma Cat + Zen Dog Rescue Society()

  • Pingback: Year in Review: 2011 » Karma Cat + Zen Dog Rescue Society()

  • Pingback: In Memory of Gilda | Karma Cat + Zen Dog Rescue Society()

  • Pingback: You’ve Come a Long Way, Baby | Karma Cat + Zen Dog Rescue Society()

  • Pingback: The Little Girl Who Meowed | Karma Cat + Zen Dog Rescue Society()

  • Pingback: A Penny for Your Thoughts, Linda | Karma Cat + Zen Dog Rescue Society()

  • Pingback: bad little sister » My Site()