Meet the cats I've rescued
As a child she had clutched
the strays to a skinny chest
begging to keep just this one
and was always denied.

Now shafts of sunlight catch random
cats curled on antique quilts or on
windowsills between the ruffles of curtains.

She smiles small smiles
and sighs small sighs of contentment,
makes another cup of tea
and ignores the cat hairs in the sugar bowl.

flowers   It is by no accident that I eagerly devote my time and energy to the cat rescue that I am involved with. My work for them on behalf of homeless cats is a natural progression of the many strays that I have picked up over the years, the love and compassion I have always felt for these creatures, and my burning desire to see a change in my lifetime... for all animals.

Over the years I was able to remove a good number of strays from the streets and find them homes. So many stories to be told and so little space to tell them in. Here are 10 tiny rescue stories along with some old photos I managed to dig up.

Momma Cat

Among the early rescues was the very pregnant white cat who was digging in the trash can for food with what seemed like her last strength. Except for her bulging belly, she was a bag of bones.

Momma cat was an easy catch. She welcomed my outstretched arms. Realizing that she was due to give birth any day, I lined a carton with towels and set it in a quiet corner. The next morning found the box empty... but there were 5 white kitties in the closet whose door she had managed to open. Eventually homes were found for each and every one of them including momma cat. It was a sad time. I wanted to keep them all.
momma cat momma cat and her kittens

The Haunted House Cats

Rescued black cats Two black cats rescued from an old abandoned house that was rumored to be haunted.

It took an enormous amount of courage to rummage through the "haunted" house with a flashlight. I refer to them as "The Haunted House Cats" because back then I rarely named any of the cats.

The Boardwalk Cat

Cat found on boardwalk It was a beautiful summer day. Everyone was enjoying the boardwalk and its many amusements. Everyone but this wanderer. She strolled along the boardwalk keeping pace with the many tourists and locals, but it didn't appear as though she was having a good time or heading anywhere in particular.

I was sure that someone dumped her there in the hopes of losing her. Because the Boardwalk cat thought that every bit of food had her name on it, she did not get along with the other cats in the house. Fortunately, she was placed in a one cat household within days.

Another Black Cat

Rescued black cat We spotted this kitty in the basement of our apartment building drinking from a puddle of stagnant water. She looked up at us with the saddest eyes.

I took her upstairs, fed her, and offered her some fresh water. She ravaged the food like there was no tomorrow.

She crossed the bridge many, many years later.


Friskies, the rescue cat He was known as "Friskies" since the day I photographed him alongside a box of his favorite-can't get enough of a good thing-food, Friskies.

My intention was to submit this photo to the manufacturer and make him a star. Despite doing that, his photo never graced supermarket shelves across the U.S. Nevertheless, Friskies was a very special cat. This smoke-grey guy was 8-10 years old and weighed only 6 lbs when we met. His narrow white ruff coupled with his frailness gave him the appearance of an old man with a beard.

Friskies was found roaming the streets on a cold winter day. His ribs were protruding and fresh battle wounds covered his body. Only he knew how long he called the streets home. I managed to grab him while offering him food. Although he was starving, he backed off after every mouthful and was not an easy catch. As there was no carrier to put him in, by the time I reached home I had incurred many battle wounds myself. Friskies was about 18 years old when he crossed the bridge.

Little Red and the White Bikini

Headed for the beach:   From the sound of its pathetic cries, there was a very young cat stuck underneath the parked car. I got flat down on the sidewalk, shimmied myself under the car, and groped around until I felt a soft puff of fur lodged up in the front tire.

This little one was maybe 6 weeks old and so covered with grease that his markings were difficult to determine. I, too, was covered with grease and the white bikini went into the trash as soon as we arrived home. Little Red needed more than a bath. Most of his fur had to be cut off. He was also loaded with fleas. After a few days of cleaning/defleaing, he found a good home with my neighbor. Little Red lived a long and happy life with Terri and her dog, Shorty.

The One That Got Away ... On 3 Legs

The sign in front of the house said "No Trespassing" but I quickly climbed the iron gate in an attempt to get the three-legged kitty I had just spotted. What I got was a good bite. Kitty slipped out of my hands but not before his teeth pierced me deeply.

What I didn't realize was that the elderly couple who owned the house had been watching me. They were distressed about the bite, pulled me inside to disinfect my hand, and begged me to see a doctor. They tried to convince me that the bite could have transmitted Rabies as they were sure that "the cat must have lost his leg due to a bite from an infected rodent." I didn't believe a word of what they were saying, yet for the next 60 days I constantly checked in the mirror to make sure I wasn't foaming from the mouth.

The Little Tabby Who Didn't Make It

Headed for the bus stop:   He was sitting on the curb staring blankly at the sidewalk. The little tabby was about 8 weeks old and his momma was nowhere in sight. His fur was matted, he was flea infested, and he was weak. I picked him up and walked towards home. His soulful eyes followed my every move yet he never made a sound.

It was too late in the evening to seek medical attention. Using an eyedropper I fed him a bit of milk diluted with warm water, lined a box with towels, put a small wind-up clock under the towels to simulate his mother's heartbeat, and set the box alongside the bed. My intention was to get him to the vet first thing in the morning.

When I awoke the next morning he was dead. The little tabby never made it. There wasn't a breath of life in his body. I was in shock and must have sat on the floor beside the box for hours before knocking on my neighbor's door. She dug a grave and buried him in the yard. I was unable to take part in this. The little tabby is still very much in my thoughts. I am thankful that he experienced a few hours of comfort and human kindness before he left for the bridge.

The Tiger Striped Cat

It was many months after spotting Tiger in the back yard that I was able to finally pick her up. Although I ran down with food each time her desperate cries called me to the window, I couldn't manage to get my hands on her for some time. Her beautiful striped markings scattered with perfectly formed bulls-eyes was evident through all of the matting and dirt that covered her fragile body. I learned from the homeowners who fed the strays that this was not one of the cats who showed up at their door for dinner.

Even though her ribs were protruding from lack of nourishment, the cat was a beauty. After cleaning her up I felt confident that I'd be able to find a home for her. Knowing that the woman who lived in the apartment under mine liked cats, I invited her up to see this prize. It was her husband who needed convincing and I really had to give him the hard sell. After repeatedly assuring him that I would help with any problem the cat presented, and that I would take her back if need be, Tiger found a loving home. Years later the couple divorced and Marcia and Tiger went on to a new home.

The Calico Cat Saved From A Blizzard

The TV blared with bulletins of the oncoming blizzard. Heeding the warning, I went out to get a few staples before the snow attacked. While chatting with neighbors in the lobby of the building, from the corner of my eye I noticed a mosaic of color approaching the building's glass door. It was a calico cat! Someone commented that the cat had been there off and on all day. With a little coaxing she came to me. Clearly, this cat was either newly lost or dumped.

I took her upstairs and telephoned Kings Highway Cat Rescue who immediately came for her. The next morning there was a blizzard the likes of which I have never seen... and by that evening, the snow was still coming down so hard that I was afraid it would soon reach and cover my windows. The calico surely would have frozen to death or maybe even been buried alive in the mountainous snowdrifts. Days later word came from the shelter that one of the volunteers fell in love with her and took her home.

cartoon cat from our graphicsDiabella I end this page with a smile and with fond memories of all of the wonderful cats that I was privileged to share a bit of my life with through the years.

To Little Red, to the Boardwalk Cat, to Friskies, to Momma Cat... to each and every one of you: "I miss you all and think of you often. May there be many mice and many pleasures across the Bridge."


A staggering number of strays are euthanized each year in pounds across the United States. This number does not take into account many more who suffer and silently live their lives out in desperation, only to die in solitude on the streets.

  • animated checkDon't buy cats from pet shops or breeders. There are too many waiting for homes in rescue facilities and on the streets.

  • animated checkContact your local rescue facility to learn how you can help.

  • animated checkGive a senior cat a second chance. Each day can be precious to an older animal who has gone from the streets to the comfort of a good home.

  • Visit our pages on The Kings Highway Cat Rescue Kitty Personals and The AC&C pound to learn how you can help.

  • animated red check Last but not least, Spay and Neuter your pets.

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The first section, Anatomy of the Cat, is a must read. It is educational and interesting. We promise you'll walk away feeling very smart, and with a new understanding of your cat.

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