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NOTE: The birds & squirrel pictured at the top of this page and in the slideshow below are just a few that I have helped rehabilitate.
WARNING: Please do not touch a wild animal, especially the young ones. If you remove a baby from it's home, sometimes the mother is just off getting it's baby food and will be back.

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Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Here, kitty kitty kitty

Spaying and neutering is something I have firmly believed in since the first time I heard Bob Barker remind his viewers on the Price is Right how important it was.  And believe me, that has been a long time!!!  I recently have had many examples of why I so firmly believe in this literally dropped on my doorstep, okay maybe not dropped on my doorstep, but living and breathing and affecting the health (and food bill) of my ranch, so that counts too.

Meet Pimienta and Nocola, Royal Ranch's newest addition's.  Pimienta means pepper in Spanish and Nocola means no tail, I guess you'll be able to figure out who is who.  Not quite a year ago our renters got two cats, brother and sister from a breeder of Bengal Bobcats.  They got them for free because they are solid black instead of the typical Bengal markings.  Now, as a Landlord, I really try to mind my own business, but when I saw that the cats had had kittens I got a little concerned, let alone that the kittens were outdoors.

During this time, some changes in that very same rental happened and we took back over half of the duplex that the cats use, so Isabella and I became very familiar with the cats and what was going on with them.  That was when I realized that the Mama kitty was pregnant again!  As a matter of fact, Daddy kitty was trying to breed Pimi as well, which is what finally got me to leave a (not so friendly) letter on the door of the renter.  Well, one thing led to another, and thank goodness I have friends in the rescue business,  and now fast forward a couple months and here we are...
So, it has taken me multiple trips down the mountain to Spay Today to get all of the adult cats spayed and neutered.  I took Daddy, Pimienta and Nocola, who at the time all still belonged to the renter down right away.  Mama was busy having just had these cute little things.  I then waited until two weeks ago and got Mama spayed, another trip down the hill we go.  Last weekend we got to take her to a vet up here to get her tested for Feline Leukemia so that my friends over at Evergreen Animal Protective League can have these adorable babies without spreading that horrific disease.  Today we will deliver the babies, yup, all three of those precious babies are going to new homes through EAPL over in Evergreen.
Now, I mentioned that none of these cats were to be ours, and that was the original plan; until the renter mentioned that he might sell the middle generation at a pet store.  Since they are Bobcat Bengals, and since he is having a hard time financially and since they are always looking for kittens, etc.  Well, I'm probably going to offend someone here, but over my dead body!  I have heard waaay to many horror stories for these cats that Isabella and I have been working very hard to tame and take care of to end up in some filthy pet store!  So, that is how Pimi and Nocola became Royal Ranch cats, and you know the funny thing was that the very same day that we "claimed" Nocola, she started calming down.  It was just as if she needed to know she had a place to stay forever.
Okay, so I have bragged about my friends in high places, but you do not need friends in high places if you don't get yourself in this pickle of needing multiple surgeries done at once.  There are lots and lots of resources out there people.  If you can't afford to spay or neuter your pet, call your local shelter and they will help you get it done, I guarantee it.  Also, help your neighbor, they may be too embarrassed to admit that they have a problem.  We have a sad story going on right now here in Colorado, an 80something woman got kicked out of her house due to it being overrun with cats.  I know how it happened, I have seen it.
As a matter of fact, last summer, the very same thing happened to us.  A gal had been coming to us to buy her hay, and when she broke her leg, we offered to help take care of her horse.  Well, it led to much more than that, her place was taken over by cats and could have been condemned at any moment.  So we cleaned it up and got the animals fixed.  It was amazing, I found a group that brought a motorhome to her place, and in one day we trapped, spayed, and neutered 22 cats!  If we had not done that, the cats would be doubled by this year, think of that!  People just don't realize how quickly it gets out of hand.
Now, off of the "soap box" as my Dad would say, but I do have some interesting points about these Bobcat Bengals.  They really are some amazing cats.  Boy, can they climb!  The ones with no tails have extra toes to help them with their balance, which kind of looks weird, but again, makes for some amazingly agile cats.  Genetically, this has been an odd bunch.  Mom and Dad are both solid black as are Pimi and Nocola, and then here comes the third generation that has all of the Bobcat Bengal traits, like the toes and tails, but are Siamese in color, very odd.
I'm not sure where I stand on the breeding down the Bobcats and Bengal tigers thing.  Before I met these cats I would have said I was against it, for sure.  And I'm not too impressed that the breeder did not make sure that my renter get the cats fixed if she removed them from the breeding program.  But some of the websites I have visited are pretty cool, and talk about saving a piece of wildlife and endangered species, and the "good examples" of the breed are amazingly "tiger" like.  I thought GSO would be a great place to get some feedback on such a discussion, so come on people, let's hear what you have to say!