Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Nearly Died Without A Name

In the last few months, we began volunteering to help with the Fort Collins Cat Rescue website. Our very first project
was to create a New Arrivals page. This was a great idea of Sarah's to announce the arrival of cats and kittens brought to the shelter so that people could see them right away and hopefully start thinking about adopting these sweet, beautiful animals.

As the new residents arrive, Sarah tells us the names of the kitties and gives us a little bit of their background so we can write something up on the New Arrivals page. One day three kittens were brought in. When Sarah sent us the information, they did not have names yet so we offered to name them ourselves. We took this privilege very seriously as we knew the kittens might keep the names we gave them for the rest of their lives. We sat around in my living room, along with my sister and brother-in-law, shouting out names and either rejecting them or keeping them in mind as possibilities. It was Dave who noticed that two of the kittens had stripes on their foreheads that appeared to be in the shape of an "M". So we started thinking of names that started with "M". Eventually, we settled on Mars and Melky and decided the third kitten's name would be Socks because of his white paws.

I emailed the names to Sarah at 4:47 PM on a Wednesday. By 9:00 PM that same night, Mars had to be euthanized due to a disease he had contracted in the field where he had been abandoned. Naturally, we were saddened to hear this news, as we would be at the death of any of the rescue kitties, but in the case of Mars, we felt even more connected to him because we had spent so much time thinking of just the right name. We sincerely hope that Mars likes his name as we
know now that this will be the only name he'll ever have.

To save us some heartache next time we get to name a sweet, precious kitty such as Mars, please:

-Vaccinate your animals. The disease Mars had is completely preventable through vaccination.
-Keep your cats indoors where they will be better protected from contracting disease or becoming the victim of a predator.
-Never dump an animal somewhere. If you cannot keep an animal, always take him or her to a shelter, preferably a no-kill rescue where they can get a second chance. There is no reason not to do this.
-If you find strays and you feel safe approaching them, don't leave them outside. If you can keep them separated from your own pets, take them indoors. If you cannot keep them at your home, take them to a rescue. The longer they are outside, the more likely they are to suffer some unpleasant fate.
-Finally, if you're reading this blog, you're probably already a cat lover and you're probably already doing the right things by your pets so the last request we have of you is to help push others to treat animals well and take good care of their pets.

On behalf of Mars, we thank you.

Eileen and Keri