My name is Colin, and I had a human once--it's been quite a while so the exact details are kinda fuzzy for me, but I vaguely remember a man who fed me and looked out for me. Our life might not have been fantastic, but it's all I knew... he was my human, and I loved him. I think he loved me, but who could have guessed what our futures would hold?
I'm not clear on exactly what happened to change that, but he did something bad and had to go away. Words like 'shooting' and 'jail' came up, but they didn't mean much to me... all I know is that I was left alone, and the streets were tough.
I lost weight, struggled to find enough food to survive. I know I didn't look great when the kind lady saw me, because she knew I needed help at first glance--she's a colony caretaker and she watches out for everyone.
She bought me food and got someone to watch over me, but unfortunately that person wasn't very reliable, and I found myself homeless once again. I took up residence in an area that proved to not be very safe. The lady brought me food and tried to make sure I was okay, but my little territory was behind what turned out to be a 'drug house', and the mentally unstable man who lived there became increasingly violent toward us community cats. The lady got really scared--she was threatened by the man when she came with food for me, and she was terrified that something bad was going to happen. When she discovered that he had bludgeoned a community kitten to death with a shovel, she knew she had to get me out of there before it was too late.
In desperation she reached out to the rescue folks, and by nightfall I was out of there. I am so grateful that my angel was watching over me--even though I knew where to hide from the crazy man, I was scared by his behavior and I was worried. Now I have all the food I can eat and a soft bed--I can snack whenever I want and snooze in safety. I got a second chance, and I will always owe that lady my life.
It's nice to have humans again, and I am happy to have a second chance at a home and a family. The rescue ladies tell me that will happen soon, not to lose hope because I am such a friendly boy. I really do look forward to that, but for the moment I'm quite content with a clean litterbox (what a luxury to have one of those again!) and endless wet chow. I know all of us kitties here at the rescue are so happy to be safe and well cared-for, and can't wait to find our very own happy endings!
Ever wonder why rescue groups are always searching for fosters?
Meet Josie--she's the reason why. Well, not just little baby Josie, but thousands upon thousands of other kitties just like her who are out there on their own, struggling to survive. Without foster homes, we can't take in cats or kittens--we rely on our foster homes to give them a safe place to heal, gain weight, and get ready for adoption.
Is it hard? Sometimes.
Is it worthwhile? Absolutely.
Will you save a life? Definitely.
All it takes is a love of kitties and a safe space--if you have other pets, that can be a guest room, an office, a bathroom... anything is better than the street. Just ask Josie--she'll tell you. She wouldn't be here without a foster.
Meet Maxy. She is a beautiful little 4 month old ball of fluff and purrs, and as of now she is in the very capable hands of our superstar Vet at Whaley Animal Hospital and has become a member of the OP family.
A frantic SOS call came in—while at the Humane Society to buy flea preventative, a kind lady ran into a desperate family. They had come seeking help for Maxy and had been turned away--they were told that the Vet is only there for preventative care. The family found her a few days ago and Macy was suffering from a progressing rectal prolapse with over an inch of her large intestine already protruding from her rectum. A dangerous situation that needed to be addressed ASAP. The family didn’t have the means to cover an emergency visit and had nowhere to turn. Lucky for Maxy that the kind lady saw the situation and tried to find help, and one look at the photos and we immediately tried to find her assistance.
Boo was a wonderful Momcat and she cared for her kittens with love and diligence. We were very sad when, at 10 days old and half the size of his siblings, her tiny tiger Micro left us way too soon. Their foster family was especially sad that all of their extra love and care couldn't make him thrive, but we are grateful that he was warm, well-fed, and so loved in his short time with us.
Fast forward a few weeks and these little kitties were ready to take on the world! Fern, Esther, Magnet, and Saber grew from tiny little balls of fluff into curious, bright, energetic little kits. Always amusing and hours of entertainment!
With her kittens older and all but one of them in their own forever homes, pretty little Boo is now ready to settle down and enjoy her own happy ending. This little panther has been through so much--we will be ecstatic to see her go to her very own forever home.
To learn more about Boo, check out her Petfinder Profile and contact us: firstname.lastname@example.org
Want to be a hero for other kitties like Boo? Become a foster! Contact us to learn how.
In rescue we see our fair share of kitties come through our doors--tiny and fragile, young and robust, adult and tranquil, we care for them all. They come to us from a variety of circumstances and all leave their mark both in our experiences interacting with them and their personalities while they are in our care.
Every single kitty we encounter is special to us--we remember their names, their personalities, and their preferences. Desiree was a Diva kitten who always commanded attention, Pierre would hide under his bed when he first came to us from a hoarding situation, but with time and patience he came to the front of his 'room' and looked for love, Renee was a bit stand-offish at first but loved to be scratched around her neck, and she would put her furry little paw on your arm to draw your hand back to her if you started to withdraw before she was ready for her cuddles to end.
Every one of them is precious to us, but from time to time we have one come along that breaks our hearts and makes us want even more for them...
Star is one of the super special ones.
She came to us toward the end of May, her ragged, stained collar still creating an impression in the fur around her neck as we took it off. It would take weeks for that indentation to go away, and we all wondered about her true story as we fabricated a make-believe one to explain how this gentle creature ended up at Animal Services.
Her paperwork said she had gone in as a stray in mid-March. She sat inside a cold cage in a busy hallway for two months, until one day one of our volunteers caught sight of her and couldn't leave the building without taking her along.
Although her records claim her to be 1.5 years old, her teeth and body tell a different story and she is most likely closer to 8-10 years of age. Her beautiful silvery grey patterned fur is a bit on the dry side and her hips and posterior have taken on an almost human grandmotherly form.
If she were human she would be a Grandma kitty, spending her days reclining in her Lazyboy, enjoying intermittent naps as she knits an afghan and watches the stories each afternoon. She would wear a string of pearls as befits a lady of a certain age, and she would enjoy gazing at the artwork she has collected through the years, and sitting in the window to feel the sunlight on her face.
We want the best for Star, and we wish that her story was a happier one--we don't know her origins or how she ended up at MDAS still wearing a dirty, ragged collar, but she is in our care now and we are trying to make her life as comfortable as possible as she awaits her forever home.
As befits a genteel elderly lady we have fashioned a little Granny Suite for her in her cage, complete with a working chandelier, pretty kitty artwork, a soft spot to stretch out, and a little bird in a cage to keep her company. We like to think that Star is gazing out the 'window' of her suite and dreaming of a bright garden filled with butterflies to watch.
We have no way of knowing Star's true age, but we hope that someone will fall in love with this beautiful girl with the most stunning emerald eyes we have encountered.
She sleeps a lot.
She loves her chow.
She enjoys being scratched on the back of the neck and in front of her tail...
... and when she is really content she purrs loudly and her nose drips a tiny bit.
She is so absolutely endearing that a couple who were visiting from Poland completely fell in love with her and wanted to adopt her to take her back to Europe--but unfortunately a 10 day car journey as they finished their vacation with a drive to Niagra plus several long flights would have been too much for our senior girl.
We desperately want to see her in her forever home--she won't take up much space and really just requires a soft bed in a quiet corner and a gentle hand to pet her graying head. She will not climb your curtains or claw your sofa--she really is the perfect companion.
If you are interested in adopting Star, please visit our website and fill out an adoption application:
Please share her story--this girl deserves a loving home of her own!
Once upon a time in a backyard not so far away, a litter of five tiny kittens was born. Their mamma was known as ‘Moosie’ by those whose properties she frequented in her daily struggle for survival, and she found herself a new Mom in the vicinity of one particular house.
Now in that house lived a very kind man named Robert. He saw that this little tabby had chosen to tuck her babies away in a sheltered corner of his lawn, and he put out food for the little family and monitored their progress. The little ones grew and began to explore, and he worried about them—their eyes had begun to crust with infection and they were clearly unwell.
At a loss for what to do, he came to us for help.
Antibiotics and eye ointments were administered, and the practically identical litter was deemed greatly improved. Everyone rejoiced at the success, and the kittens grew until they were old enough to be spayed/neutered and vaccinated, and they were ready to be placed for adoption.
Sadly, a terrible enemy found its way into the circle—a deadly virus infiltrated the systems of the young ones and, despite intensive treatment and monitoring, several were lost. There was grieving and sorrow—the loss of such young lives affects us greatly, and we all felt the weight of their absence.
One of the survivors was named Zayne, and his personality was as soft and inviting as his silver-patterned fur. Always happy to meet new friends, he greeted newcomers with a chirp and an invitation to play, and he quickly became a volunteer favorite. It was no surprise when, just after Christmas, he found his forever home.
Or so we thought.
One afternoon in April a call was received—the kind of call that we hope never comes.
A juvenile cat had been surrendered at Animal Services, left in a dilapidated carrier with a blurry photocopy of one of our adoption contracts tucked inside. The cat’s name was Zayne, and he was in the intake room—could someone come? A frantic phone tree was activated—everyone scrambled to mobilize and our medical officer, who just so happened to be closest to the facility, hurried to MDAS.
A heartbreaking sight met her upon arrival at the intake room—Zayne’s large, startled eyes peered at her from the back of a cold metal cage. Licking his lips with anxiety he tried to make himself appear smaller as he crouched in the litter tray, shrinking back as her hand approached him in comfort.
How had this happened? Why had Zayne been left in this place? The first term of the adoption contract states that if, for any reason, the adopter cannot maintain guardianship of the cat they are to revert back to the rescue. Why had we not been contacted?
But the worst was yet to come. Upon intake Zayne had been FIV tested as standard procedure… and the result was positive. A second test was carried out, just to make sure there was no error. The same result came back.
Our medical officer was questioned several times:
“You still want him?”
“Are you sure? He is FIV positive.”
“Yes, of course I'm taking him, there's no question!”
It was with a sense of relief that we accepted our Zayne back into the rescue—thank goodness he had been surrendered with a copy of our adoption contract! Without that he would have been euthenized and we would never have known his fate. Our dear, sweet, loving little boy would have lost his life.
It was unthinkable.
Detective work began—many phone calls went out, and most were unanswered. The adopter could not be reached. Her number had been disconnected. Finally a reference answered and the picture came into focus. His adopter had moved to Las Vegas several months before. She left the cat with her landlord, who was supposed to care for him. That obviously didn’t happen, and instead of caring for Zayne he abandoned him at a high-kill shelter.
We raged at his adopter.
We cried for Zayne and what he had been through.
We felt so thankful that the man meant to care for him had at least been sensible enough to include his adoption contract when he dumped him at MDAS. Without that, he would have been lost.
We worried for Zayne—we know that his FIV+ status does not diminish his quality of life or longevity, but how would potential adopters feel? There is so much misinformation about the virus, and so many potential adopters are afraid—would anyone make a commitment to this wonderful kitty?
Days passed, then weeks, and Zayne prospered—he was as gentle and loving as ever, and wanted nothing more than to run and play and enjoy cuddles with his favorite humans. One of those humans happened to be a young man who has volunteered with us for several years. Their bond grew and we were ecstatic when, one day back in May, he decided to make Zayne a part of his family.
We are happy to report that Zayne is loved and spoiled in his REAL forever home, and he now enjoys the companionship of a big fluffy bunny named Oreo. He is healthy and active, and will have many happy years with his new family. They are aware of his special needs and monitor him closely, and we visit him periodically to check on his health.
Zayne's name is now Zeus--a new name for a new life--and he is the reigning king of his household.
This is the first photograph we ever saw of Milana.
She was far from pretty back then--crusty patches of hair loss covered her body and what fur she had stuck out at odd angles, looking dry and disheveled. Her ears were dirty and crusted, her nose scratched and scarred. Thin and bleeding, she desperately dodged neighborhood children who were chasing her, throwing stones at her ravaged body. People in the community shooed her away on sight and feared for their dogs and children when they saw her, repulsed by her large expanses of missing fur, the remaining patches of angry, visibly raw skin.
Instead of thinking to help this poor creature, they did the opposite and tried to harm her.
Luckily, one neighborhood lady showed amazing kindness, and despite having no previous knowledge of cats and being the guardian to two rescued greyhounds herself, she made the choice to help.
She saw the kitty in need, chased away the neighborhood children, and began putting out food and water for the poor little creature. She bought a cardboard kitty cubicle and placed it in a secluded spot by her front door to provide shelter. She talked with neighbors, looking for options, but everyone tried to disuade her from helping. She finally learned that one of our volunteers lives in the neighborhood and asked us for help, and the long rescue process began.
Despite her appearance the kitty was young, and we worried for the fate of this girl if she was left untreated. At first, orange kitty was skittish and came to quickly eat her meal and run off. Hardly surprising considering her previous interactions with humans involved shouting and projectiles. But kindness and good food began to win her over, and slowly she became very affectionate with her human lady.
We had no idea if this cat was socialized or a community kitty and she only appeared reliably at mealtimes, so in the beginning we treated her by dosing her wet food. She received medication via food to combat the skin condition, liquid vitamins, probiotics, and antibiotics for the secondary infections that were sure to set into her bleeding, raw skin.
The process was slow and seemed to take forever... and then one day we received news that orange kitty had begunn to rub against the lady's legs! Success!
That small act alone gave us hope that this abandoned baby wouldn't end up living the rest of her days on the streets--if socialized, she could indeed become somebody's indoor companion!
One sunny day, through sheer good luck, we were able to rescue her and we took her immediately to our vet. After receiving an injection to decrease the inflammation throughout her body, she was ready to go into a foster home. One of our best foster families had an opening, and we never looked back. We named her Milana after the neighborhood she came from, and she quickly settled into life in her foster home.
Thanks to her superstar foster parents and their furry family, Millie learned to trust kind hands, to enjoy being petted and loved, and to interact with her furry clan.
Millie's transformation has been nothing short of miraculous--her skin has healed, her fur grown back in. She has been socializing with her foster siblings and her big dog foster brother and sisters, all with great success!
Millie especially enjoys the foster kittens!
Our beautiful Milana has been spayed and vaccinated, and is now ready to go to her very own forever family! She has become very social and does well with the kittens and dogs in her foster home, and she is bright and curious--enjoying human interaction and wanting to participate in all aspects of household life.
She has made herself very comfortable in the presence of her foster family--as you can see--here she is showing off her spay scar!
Milana is a beautiful girl with a rough past who just needs a home of her own and lots of love. She is very affectionate and curious, and will be a wonderful addition to any home. If you would like more information on Millie, please contact us!
I believe a re-introduction is in order.
My name is Snow, but you may remember me as 'White Cat' or 'Paloma'. I'm the kitty who was abandoned inside a busy store, terrified and frantic.
The nice people at Operation PAW took me in and cared for me, even when I was a hissy, growly, furious ball of white fluff. They put up with my mood swings, my scratching, my over-stimulated bites... they were very good to me.
Don't get me wrong, I was grateful to have a place to call my own, even if it was a cage. Mealtimes were regular and I got lots of attention. They slowly taught me that I could trust them, that petting is nice, and that nobody there meant me any harm.
The rescue ladies were very open and honest with my new Mamma--they told her my story, and how everyone had been working with me to make me trust them, to teach me to interact appropriately, and she was okay with that. She signed the papers and took me home, and now I have a FOREVER family of my own!
My name is Snow, and I am loved.
Little Misty is one lucky girl--a kind man found her all by herself at three weeks of age and took her away from a busy mechanic shop to safety, realizing she needed immediate help if she was going to survive. Her tiny teeth were just pushing through her gums, but she needed to be bottle-fed for at least another week in order to thrive and make the transition to solid food.
It was Misty's lucky day, because she ended up in the care of one of our amazing Foster Moms who specializes in raising bottle babies! Her Foster Mom has worked with her, transitioned her to solid food, and introduced her to another rescue kitty around her own age so she would acquire good kitty social skills.
Our little munchkin has become a truly lovely little girl and she has been spayed, vaccinated, and is looking for her forever home! She is 10 weeks old and will be a wonderful addition to any household.
If you think that may be with you, contact us at email@example.com for further details. Her adoption fee is $75.
Camille had been a familiar fixture at the Flea Market for a year or two -- friendly and sociable, she weaved in and out among obliging legs, greeting the shoppers and hoping for a morsel of food in return. She was pregnant again, and the vendors who looked out for her worried that none of this litter would survive, just like her two previous ones. Between the dangers of life on the streets and the sweltering South Florida heat, it wasn't an easy existence for this young girl and she struggled daily to find enough food to sustain herself and her unborn babies.
A kind-hearted young man who frequented the market just happened to be an acquaintance of one of our directors, and he mentioned his concern for the Momcat in passing one day. After much discussion and a bit of strategizing, two of our rescue ladies set out to the market with a trap and a silent prayer.
You can see from the video that the outcome of the first attempt was not in their favor.
Not to be discouraged, a live trap was set and baited with yummy food, and they went away hoping their second attempt would be a success. Luckily, Momcat was hungry enough to go into the live trap the next day, and her existence on the streets was behind her forever.
There was general excitement--we finally got her! She and her babies would be safe!
However... now that we had finally managed to catch her, where could we place her? We sent out an SOS to our fosters, and one wonderful lady stepped up to give our Momcat a temporary place to stay until more permanent accommodations could be arranged for her. Despite being among strangers in an unfamiliar place, this kitty was gentle and calm, and we decided to call her Camille--a name as pretty as our new little Momcat.
At first she didn't necessarily want to eat and we made a late-night trip to her foster home to begin syringe-feeding her recovery food to kick-start her appetite.
And it certainly worked--after the first few bites she needed no further encouragement and she began eating like a champ. The biggest obstacle out of the way, we left her to settle in and rest.
As Camille settled into her new life, we began the long wait for her delivery. We hoped and prayed that her unborn kittens were healthy and that the regular nourishment she was receiving during this final period of her pregnancy would be enough to give them the strength to survive.
Luckily during this final period, an amazing family stepped up to provide her with a long-term foster home and she was transferred and had settled in well before she gave birth to five beautiful babies!
Five healthy, thriving babies have grown and developed, much to the delight of all of us here at Operation PAW! This time around Camille is safe and loved and her babies have had the opportunity at life that her previous litters did not. We have received frequent photo and video updates from her foster family, and we have been blessed to witness the journey this little family has made.
Camille settled into the role of Mama Cat beautifully and she has focused on the welfare of her babies with fervor. They are fat, healthy, and adorable, and we are so happy that she finally gets to see her little ones grow and thrive!
Her foster family has been caring and attentive and has made sure the little family is safe and comfortable. They even made a little cardboard fort for them to hang out and play in! We think they appreciate it!
Camille's beautiful babies are around 6 weeks old now, and are developing distinctive personalities as well as markings. They are learning to play and romp, and are mastering the transition to solid food with Mamma supervising their every action.
Tales of rescue kitties--this is the behind-the-scenes work carried out by our rescue volunteers on a daily basis.