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Thank you to everyone who reached out to me, helped spread the word, helped re-tweet, and did things I don’t understand on the Facebook, something of which I am not a user. ¬†ūüėČ ¬†Extra big thanks to Heidi Potter whose exceptional efforts in spreading the word came to the attention of some other hacker friends elsewhere in PA. ¬†Their cat has been lonely ever since her companion bunny rabbit in the house passed away. ¬†They reached out and so lovingly offered up a home for Chico and Mouse Face.

The actually process was nothing short of a catastrophe, thanks to the badly-managed and logistically broken SPCA here in Pennsylvania.  Despite making all arrangements with the Philadelphia office to have the cats held and waiting for their new owners on Friday, things went awry.  The new folks were driving all the way down from the Poconos to meet me in North Philly at that SPCA office when I learned that, with NO explanation, the cats had been MOVED many hours away.  So, abruptly and after having almost made it to Philadelphia, they pulled off the road, I spent time on the phone, and we tracked down the cats like prisoners who had been mistakenly lost somewhere in the DoC network.

In the end, we all arrived at the Danville, PA SPCA and it was so dysfunctional that over an hour passed before things could be completed. ¬†The administrative “do not adopt out” holds that had been placed on the cats’ files could not be removed, then the staff kept attempting to attend to¬†dozens of other odd tasks at the same time, and even (surreally) a farmer and his wife came in and started trying to talk to everyone present about a sheep theft from their¬†farm. ¬†This was a case of over-worked staff trying hard to do “everything” at the same time and ultimately doing nothing at all in the process. ¬†Eventually, we took matters in to our own hand and took the carriers back to the holding areas and sprung Chico and Mouse Face from their cage. ¬†They were so scared.

This is the most morally-conflicted part of the tale for me. ¬†I mean, I love the SPCA and the work that they do and I am SOOOO grateful for the organization’s No Kill policy, but let’s face it… it’s kind of a hell hole back in those holding areas. ¬†There are just row after row of huge barracks of cages. ¬†All the animals are stirred up and constantly yowling and yapping and howling. ¬†It’s really like some sort of awful jail to them, where everyone is shaking and unsure of what’s going on. ¬†Chico immediately ran into my arms when I popped the lock on¬†his cage. ¬†Mouse Face was initially hard to find… he had hidden himself beneath all of the bedding and cushions in the cage.

In the end, we got them secured and finished all the paperwork, petting them the whole while…

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And, many dollars in fees later, my friends were taking them home.  Getting a photo sent to me later that evening showing my pair of cats resting comfortably and undisturbed on nice chairs like regular pets set my heart glowing and lifted a tremendous weight from my shoulders.

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Despite all its logistical failings (and the stories we heard from staff and patrons while waiting were manifold… Transport services often moves animals incorrectly, people lose paperwork, medications are handled incorrectly, etc etc etc) the SPCA is a wonderful organization and deserves our support.

And, of course, if you are thinking of bringing a new pet into your home… please consider adopting from shelters or other services where animals without homes are waiting for you.

Thank you.  And thank you to all my friends who helped make this one of the best Holiday Seasons ever for me.

Much love to you all.

– — —–[ ORIGINAL POST]—– — –

As some folk who know me are aware, I¬†am the owner of two adorable and friendly cats — Chico and Mouse Face — who deserve more love and attention than I can provide at this time.¬† When it was me and my then-girlfriend, someone was always around.¬† Then it was just me, plus other housemates from time to time.¬† Now‚Ķ it‚Äôs just me.¬† And I am out of the area (and out of the country) more and more every month. ¬†My time is becoming divided between D.C., Montana, Europe, and the Middle East.

 

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Chico

Because I am¬†spending as much as half of my time overseas for the foreseeable future, it was undeniable that this¬†was not fair to the cats or to any friends whom I would ask to look after them when I‚Äôm away.¬† I was¬†forced to seek a new home for them where people were¬†around more often and they would¬†not get so lonely. ¬†One friend pitched in for a while, because he shelters animals with no place else to go. ¬†In his tiny 2-bedroom house he was caring for 5 cats but still agreed to give Chico and Mouse Face a good home. ¬†This arrangement was imperfect, but for the past few¬†months it’s been what we had to do.

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Mouse Face

 

Now he is forced to take on an 85-lb Labrador pup because of an owner who was urgently called out of the area on a legal matter.  The situation at his place reached a breaking point, and my cats had to move on.  After trying for weeks and weeks to ask anyone whom I knew, it was clear that we were out of options.  With the dog deadline day looming, the hardest thing I can recall doing in my life was to take Chico and Mouse Face to the SPCA and offer them for adoption.  The PA SPCA has a no-kill policy and Good Home Guarantee if the pets meet proper health and personality criteria.  Many medical tests, many fees, and many tears later, they were being accepted back to their new cat condo in North Philly.

Because they are a pair, that means they get a little more space at the shelter.  But it might also be harder to place them.  So I am turning to the Internet for help.

 

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These two cats are both almost 8 years old and from the same litter.  They squabble on occasion but always make up soon after.  They are both fixed and have clean medical histories.  I will supply their new owners with treats, toys, and also their hardware.  What hardware?  Well, these two cats use an automated feeder that dispenses their servings at the right time of day and a water fountain that recycles and cleans itself.  My buddy also still has their pet carriers.  All you’d need to provide is love.

If you are from anywhere in the tri-state area or even as far north as New York or as far south as DC, I would totally make it cost-neutral for you to¬†adopt these two lovely, lost souls. ¬†I will cover all fees at the SPCA, help you with mileage to and from here, and even take you out for a meal (I’d want to do that anyway, to get to know you.)

If anyone in the hacker or tech community is willing to open their home to two little animals who need more love than I can provide, I can’t say what a difference that would make for my Holiday Season. ¬†It’s all I want for Christmas.

Please feel free to email me anytime… deviant@deviating.net

 

 

I’m totally not above trying to play on your emotions here. ¬†So allow me to just say: here are my two cats looking up at you, hopeful that your home would be right for them…

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And I’d like to tell you a little bit more about them. ¬†Chico loves to explore in order to¬†find new places to investigate…

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… and Mouse Face loves to explore in order to find new places to sleep…

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… Chico likes to sleep, too. ¬†But his favorite sleeping spots tend to be under covers (see the white feet sticking out)…

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… some of Mouse Face’s favorite spots are boxes…

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… but what cat doesn’t like boxes? ¬†Chico also appreciates them sometimes…

Chico in a Box

… Mouse Face always gets told how¬†a brave and well-behaved he is, even on trips to the vet…

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… but mostly these two just like to lounge and stretch out and spend their day sleeping. Next to people if possible, but on any soft surface is all they ask…

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… well, that and tummy rubs. ¬†If you see this inviting pose…

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… then you shall know immediately what time it is!

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Please let me know if you think you have extra belly rubs to give to deserving cats this holiday season.  Thank you.

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