UPDATE- Good news, Shadow is flying to America to get his happy ending. However, he would love a foster home until 19th May (our cats hate him, so he ends up shut away on his own too much). Please get in touch if you could offer a foster home where he could be part of the family, or with another playful cat: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Shadow was spotted outside a mosque eating rice that had been put out for the birds and when he moved was limping badly, only using three legs. It was obvious he was struggling and did not belong on the streets, especially as when he was approached he didn’t run away, just laid beside us and wanted a stroke.
On a visit to the vet we discovered he had broken both his leg and tail, they had since healed but there is muscle wastage on the injured side as he doesn’t fully weight bear, he remembers the pain. He was only between 2-3 months old when rescued, so had an awful start in life. We will never know how he got his injuries or when he was dumped on the streets, all we know is it astoundingly hasn’t affected his trust in humans, he is a really sweet boy.
Shadow is now doing amazingly, he can jump kitchen counter height and is getting stronger daily; he does still walk with a slight limp but the vet believes with time he should fully recover. He can run really fast (which he does a lot) and flies up the stairs; when he is running he now uses the leg correctly, forgetting the past pain. It is believed he is a Norwegian Forest / Bengal mix; so he will be a big cat when fully grown.
We would love to keep him but our older cats are not impressed. Shadow loves to play and chases everything that moves (our poor older cats and sometimes your ankles if he is bored). Very importantly, if you don’t have another playful cat, you will need to play with him – throwing balls, a toy on a stick etc. Obviously, he is a kitten so play is normal behaviour but with Shadow, that urge to chase is strong, probably his Bengal roots. He is very affectionate and loves to be with you, he isn’t a lap cat but will want to sit beside you, he is called Shadow because he literally follows me everywhere.
- Age: 4 – 5 months
- Vaccinated: Yes
- Microchipped: Yes
- Spayed/neutered: Yes
- Good with other cats: Yes – but not older cats who want to chill.
- Good with dogs: Unknown
- Good with children: Yes – preferably older children.
- FIV/FeLV negative
- Available for adoption in the USA: Yes.
In Qatar, we have a lot of sad animal cases, if you follow some of the rescue groups you would pull your hair out and not know where to start! Personally, I try to stick to TNR (Trap Neuter Return) as that is about prevention but of course, working on the streets means you come across cases who need help and numerous dumped pets. This latest case though I didn’t find on the streets but saw on a popular Qatar facebook page…should never look at them!
Zima was abandoned by her owner, the owner moved away leaving Zima behind at the house where she had been living. The people who were sharing the property didn’t want a cat and they certainly didn’t want a cat who then gave birth to three kittens! They put an advert on a Facebook site offering the kittens for free – literally just go and pick one up, as if they were toys! The kittens were only about a 1 week old and still feeding from mum; as these are cute Persian kittens plus offered for free, loads of people responded saying they wanted a kitten and would go and get one. I read the post with horror seeing the photographs showing newly born kittens and quickly responded saying the kittens were far too young to give away, the person replied saying they were giving them away because they couldn’t afford to feed them, at which point I offered to bring them food but please not to give the kittens away.
A heartbreaking visit to the family to give the food saw the reality of where mum and kittens were living and how they were really not wanted; mum looked so sad and was so so thin but such a good mum, her kittens looked healthy and she was very protective of them hiding them under a kitchen cabinet to try and keep them safe. I was devastated to have to leave them there but had nowhere to take them having my own cats and a new rescue at home.
Following a sleepless night worrying about them I received a text message the next day from the people saying they simply couldn’t keep them, unfortunately, the food hadn’t bought the family time. I desperately contacted a fellow cat rescuer asking if she could help find a foster home but I literally needed it in the next few hours! She performed a miracle and found a wonderful foster home for the whole family. Now that they had somewhere safe to go I drove across town to collect the family, on arrival there it was almost like the mother cat knew help had finally come, on placing the carrier down mother cat calmly walked in it and sat down, as if she sensed a better life was just around the corner.
A visit to the vet confirmed that the kittens were all in good health but mum was in a very poor state. She had a vitamin injection but couldn’t be vaccinated because she was just too weak. It was also discovered she has hardly any teeth, therefore must have been really struggling to eat at all. However, they were given the all clear to move into the foster home. Thankfully she also tested negative for FIV.
Zima (Slavic for winter), as she was named by her foster mum, and her family moved into 5-star accommodation! Their very own room with fleece blankets and soft food that mum could eat. They must have thought they had landed in paradise!
Paradise is where they still are but the next challenge is finding good homes for them and covering all the veterinary costs of 4 cats – spaying, vaccination, antibiotics, worming etc. Good homes in Qatar are hard to come by and that is putting it mildly. A lot of rescuers ship abroad to America or the UK in the search for forever homes, an extremely expensive option! I hope it won’t come to that, divorce will be in the air soon as my long-suffering husband hears about the next cat rescue problem but we just can’t ignore the plight of the animals around us and help where we can.
A happy update – all three kittens have been adopted by Canadian families, lucky babies will one day end up in Canada, a far cry from where they started life. Now just mum needs her happy ending.