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Itty Bitty Kitty

From Mark:

When I met Kate, she had two cats: Libby and Maggie. When we lived in an apartment, we added a rabbit: Sophia. When we moved into a house, we added a dog: Cooper.

One day, Kate went for a run and rescued two tiny kittens off the street: Poppy and Jack. Unfortunately, Jack had a fatal disease called FIP, and we had to euthanize him after knowing him for only a couple of weeks. Poppy, on the other hand, grew into a big healthy cat. We think he’s a Maine Coon, which is a large breed.

We intended to foster Jack and Poppy and to find them good homes. However, we felt obligated to disclose to potential new owners that Poppy’s brother had the fatal FIP disease. At that point, we realized nobody would want Poppy, so we decided to keep him.

By April 2009, we had three cats, a dog, and a rabbit, if you are keeping count. We had been feeding a stray pregnant cat in the neighborhood at the time. We called her Charlotte. One day, we noticed Charlotte wasn’t pregnant anymore, so we scoured the neighborhood looking for her litter. Charlotte had given  birth to seven kittens in our neighbor’s garage in an open suitcase. We volunteered to take them all in, and our neighbor probably let out a huge sigh of relief after we left.

That’s 13 animals in our little home.

We fed, fixed, vaccinated, fostered, and placed Charlotte and six of the seven litter-mates, leaving one little black cat with us. We named him Itty Bitty because he was the smallest runt.

We tried to place Itty Bitty for about a year and a half. Another neighbor took in Charlotte, the momma cat. We asked her if she wouldn’t mind taking Itty Bitty as well.

She took Itty Bitty into her home but returned him to us after only three weeks. Charlotte, his own mother, kept attacking him mercilessly. I guess Charlotte found her cozy little home and didn’t want to share.

We took Itty Bitty back and tried again to place him. We asked friends and family, we placed ads online, and we sought the help of a friend who does a lot of fostering. Local no-kill shelters were all exceeding capacity, probably with an abundance of foreclosure kitties.

Now, with an SMA child, we decided we could no longer foster Itty Bitty. We were left with no real choice but to surrender him to the local SPCA today.

We only knew him for about a year and a half, but we hope they can find him a good home.

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  • Anastasia Liebler says:

    Hello Mark and Kate,

    I am sorry to hear about your kittin. It must have been a hard choice. Iam sure that Itty Bitty will find a great home. I love you all and hope that you had a great day. I hope to see you soon and I know it is easyer said then done but keep your head up and if you ever need to put it down every once in a while that is ok too. 🙂

    Getty-Sweet dreams sweet girl. I love you more every day. I got a few of my best friends to go on a walk with me in LA just for you. We will be with a bunch of other familys that are going throught the same battle that your family is. We are called “Team Getty” and we are so excited. Have a good night under your kites. I love you.

  • Ciny says:

    So sorry to hear about your Itty Bitty. I am sure your choice was not an easy one, but necessary. I just found out today that my cat, Baby Fluff, probably has cancer. She got into a fight a few weeks ago, or something bit her, either way it ended up absessed and she had to have surgery. It was a rocky few days, force feeding her, flushing her drain, plus she has to wear a miserable cone that makes her walk like a drunk. Anyway just when I though she was out of the woods I noticed a new scratch and within 24hours she had a hunk of skin that was hanging off of her. Back for more surgery she went. She came home looking pretty spunking and once again I thought we were out of the woods. Now the past couple of days she’s hardly eaten and I have to force feed her water. She’s also been very lathargic. I took her back to the vet today and he said that she’s very anemic and the prognosis didn’t look good, probably cancer, could be renal failure, or autoimmune, but no matter what, he does not think she will survive. Needless to say, I am devastated and this is only my cat. I can’t imagine having to make the types of medical decisions that I am sure you are confronted with all the time. You sound like wonderful, caring people and I feel for you. From your blog post I know that you are both strong and courageous, even if you don’t feel like it sometimes. The lengths you have gone to help that little kitten and her family were extrodinary and I am sure you are giving even MORE extrodinary care to your daughter. This site is a beautiful tribute to her and hopefully not only raises awareness about her illness, but also is very theraputic for you and a great support. God Bless.

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