Abandoned Kitten

moon phase Week of 01/28/2013 Best days to prune trees.

It was cold Monday morning, so I had to warm up my little car before heading down the river road to La Farge. A half-mile from the house, I noticed something white and fuzzy down in the ditch. I pulled over and got out for a closer look. Sure enough, it was a small animal curled up in a ball and covered with frost.

Abandoned Kitten Abandoned Kitten As I bent down, the face of a little blue-eyed kitten peered up from under a frost-covered tail. He barely moved when I picked him up, and I noticed a scrape on his chin, probably from where he hit the hard, frozen snow when someone threw him out the window of their moving car. I really don't know how the kitten ended up in the ditch in the middle of nowhere at 15 degrees below zero, but human (ir)responsibility was, unfortunately, the first thing that came to mind.

Anyway, I wrapped him up in a towel and put him on the seat next to me in front of the heater vent. He was in bad shape, so I decided to get him to someone who could care for him. I took the kitten to three different places, including the sheriff's office, but no one would take him. The Humane Society was closed, but someone suggested I call a local, grassroots cat-care called Tabby Town.

A lady answered and when I explained the situation, she didn't hesitate. "Bring the poor little guy over. I'll take care of him," she said. I thought, this kind woman was an angel from heaven. I left knowing the little frosty kitty may have a future after all.

I find it sad that there isn't a place in our society where all the sick, injured and wayward animals, wild and domestic, can find care. There are far too few people with the compassion or time it takes to care for these animals without any public compensation. It's a constant battle, trying to get funding that is never enough. Wildlife rehabilitators give their hearts, souls—and their own money—to save imperiled birds and animals. It's time for our politicians to accept this very important challenge to help animals in need. Every one of us should be willing to show our concern for these helpless animals, and encourage our leaders to create public funding. Hungry Deer Hungry Deer Nothing but good could ever come of it, and the more good deeds in our lives, the better we will be for it. It's time for all of us to set an example for future generations, and provide a little compassion for animals in need of help.

The snow that is still on the ground has frozen hard as a rock and the deer can walk on top of it without breaking through. There still seems to be enough food for them, but it will grow more scarce with each passing day. For now, it's fun to watch a deer as she slowly walks along nibbling here and there at a clump of dry grass or the seed heads of weeds. She might even stand on her hind legs to reach a few cedar berries or a dried apple. Male Red-bellied Woodpecker Male Red-bellied Woodpecker A south-facing alfalfa field has become a favorite evening gathering place for deer. One night I counted 41 deer grazing where the snow had melted, exposing something green to eat.

When it's cold, the woodpeckers are busy searching the tree trunks and branches for insects under the loose bark. The pretty male red-bellied woodpecker is busy all day eating weed seeds, sumac berries and birdseed from the feeder.

Mourning Dove Mourning Dove I like to scatter some sunflower seeds and cracked corn over the frozen snow for the birds that prefer to feed on the ground. These include juncos, sparrows and mourning doves. Ground-feeding also helps to keep the blue jays busy and away from the bird feeders. I really enjoy seeing a few doves in winter. Seven of them come for a free handout each day.

Adult Male Cooper's Hawk Adult Male Cooper's Hawk I can always tell when there is a Cooper's Hawk in the yard, because of the way the other birds act when one is around. When all the birds suddenly fly for cover, I always look to see if I can spot a hawk. I was lucky today when I spotted a little adult male Cooper's Hawk perched on the brush pile where the birds had taken cover. He couldn't get to the little birds, so he thought he would just sit there and wait for them to come out.  Red Eye of Cooper's Hawk Red Eye of Cooper's Hawk After about five minutes, he gave up and quickly flew off through the woods and the little birds reappeared. It's always a special treat to get a good look at a Cooper's Hawk, and even better when I can get a few pictures of one. They come and go so quickly I rarely get to see them, let alone get a picture. The male I saw today was in full adult plumage, with a beautiful blush-colored breast and rich dark red eyes.

Asian Lady Beetle Asian Lady Beetle Saturday morning there was an Asian Lady Beetle trying to climb up out of the sink. I placed a drop of water in front of her and she seemed eager to get a drink, which may be why she was there in the first place.

The snow came down in flakes as big as silver dollars Sunday morning, but it lasted only a few minutes. The snow turned to light rain and sleet during the night, and left a hard crust on the ground that was difficult to walk on. Snow Snow  You never know what to expect from the weather in January, and it will be interesting to see what February has in store for us!

Naturally Yours,
Dan

All art ©2013 Organic Valley

Post a Comment

*
* (not displayed)

*

* - required field

Comments

Dan Hazlett from on February 8, 2013 at 02:50:01 PM
Blanket response to kitten comments 2.7.13 BY Dan Hazlett

I must say that I was truly humbled by the many sincere letters I received from cat lovers around the country. Can’t thank you all enough for all the compassionate thoughts and comments.

Many of you wondered how anyone could abandon a helpless kitten. That was the first thought that jumped into my head, because we all know it happens more often than we care to think about. The truth is, I don’t really know how the kitten ended up along the road.

After thinking about it, I came up with another possible scenario. On such a cold night, the kitten may have crawled up under a parked car or truck to get warm near the engine and got an unexpected ride when the vehicle started up and went down the road with him still underneath. He couldn’t hold on when the car or truck made a turn and he dropped to the road. Of course, all I can do is speculate. I’ll never really know what happened. I do know that much was felt and much was learned and, thanks to my readers, I know that compassion can spread like wild fire.

Teresa in Colorado asks us to remember the words of Ghandi, who passed in the first week of January 1948. “You can judge a nation by the way it treats and tends its animals.” These are words to live by and have always been part of my organic dream.

Jan from Tennessee cautions that we must be careful when saving the life of a wild animal because of the strict laws. It’s sad that the government discourages its citizens from following their hearts. The laws have made wildlife a resource. Their motives are based in politics, economics and the letter of man-made laws. The laws of Nature take a backseat to society’s needs.

Jeanne from New York thinks that Frosty would a good name for the kitten. Perfect!
Diane from from Il on February 7, 2013 at 07:24:01 AM
I hate to let you know the kitten had very severe injuries and had to be euthanized. I contacted the rescue out of curiosity due to the fact I am on a rescue board myself ... Saddened to hear the news. But until we get humans to realize pets are throw away toys this will go on :(
Tammy from from Bloomington, Indiana on February 3, 2013 at 11:19:33 PM
I really enjoy your posts! The little frosty kitten loooks like my Puffy! But she is now fixed.Sad to think anyone could be so mean as to throw him out in the cold temps. And great of you to see him to a decent home. I got,I don't know how many abandoned cats homes. It always made me happy to do it.
Ben from from Tybee Island,+GA on February 3, 2013 at 11:38:52 AM
Great that you saw the poor kitten and that Tabby Town gave him a home. He'll warm somebody's lap next Winter.
Kat from from Canyon Lake, Tx on February 2, 2013 at 07:54:55 PM
What a beautiful little blue point Siamese kitten. Did she ever find a home?
Millie from from Plymouth,MN on February 1, 2013 at 09:30:58 PM
Poor little kitty - so glad you took the time to find a warm place for him. Bless you
VF Chapmon from from Cleburne Texas on January 31, 2013 at 12:23:42 PM
I want to thank you for getting the little kitten help I love that you have such a kind heart and I agree more people need to have compassion for all (people/animals. Love your pictures..
Corinne from on January 31, 2013 at 12:09:05 PM
I read your article Abandonded Kitten, and wished that there were laws that were enforced to protect animals from being discarded and abused. If you start a petition for law makers ( you have an audience)my husband and I will be the first to sign it.
God Bless,
Will & Corinne
Deb from from Deale, Maryland on January 31, 2013 at 09:55:57 AM
Dear Dan,

I have emailed this entry concerning the kitten and the need for public funding to my state of Maryland repesentatives and senators. In MD we do have a very active animal welfare community. I think Senator Mikulski and her team will enjoy your writing (if they are not aware of it already). Thank you for rescuing the kitten, she is beautiful and will no doubt quickly find a loving home. Please keep us posted on her condition. You represent what being a good human means.
Patricia from on January 31, 2013 at 01:20:12 AM
Dan,
Do you know if the kitten got well?
Thanks Tabby for her love and compassion, I am glad there are still people like her
Rx: Nature
columbine flower For kids, a dose of nature is what the doctor ordered learn more
Share
Where to Buy Our Products
Search the Website
Animal Care
Beyond the Plate
Organic Valley on Facebook and Twitter Follow us on Twitter Friend us on Facebook
Where to Buy Our Products
Organic Valley