Tuesday, 29 September 2009

Boris and Che ,two very lucky dogs.

Today we tried Krystal with the three old shetlands Noddy, Maggie and Connie,this time it has worked,they have accepted her with no problem at all.I want our vet to see her and check her over as her melanomas are quite advanced and I do not want her to be in pain and suffering.She certainly has a quality of life at the moment - Maybe she has a year or so left but I would definitely like a second opinion on her condition.
The day before yesterday I received a call from Jackie,an ex member of staff at the shelter about a sheep stuck on a ledge in Dorothea Quarry, he/she had been there for 2 weeks and was clearly becoming distressed and weak. This Quarry is well known for its deep waters which have claimed the lives of several divers over the past few years.Barry went out to have a look at the situation and agreed with me that there was a chance that if someone managed to climb down to save the sheep there was a good chance it would leap to its death,however it was clear we could not wait much longer to attempt a rescue. Calls to another charity had resulted in no action being taken and so I asked Barry if he would mention it to some of his mountain rescue friends. I was unsure whether they would help but last night I received a call to say that members of Abergele Mountain rescue had come to the rescue , had climbed down to save the errant sheep and apart from it being thin and weak, it was safe and well. I cant thank them enough, they really are brilliant.
Katy pup had someone come to see her today but they said she was "too aggressive"!!!
Katy is 11 weeks old and is the sweetest gentlest little pup any of us have seen.I have no idea what they expected, all pups run and jump up for a fuss and cuddle and she is no exception but no way is she aggressive, she is not even as nippy and chewy as most pups we encounter.Oh well that was most definitely NOT the right home for her.We will find someone lovely for her in time.
I had to take Felix to the vet today.Felix has lived here for a few years and is a great favourite with everybody, he comes into the house at the end of the day and spends the evening sitting on my knee but he has had some health problems lately and in this last week has lost weight and has the runs.The vet has kept him in to do more blood tests so I hope this time we will find out what is really wrong with him.We homed him once and Felix who has always been a gentle affectionate cat, attacked everyone as soon as he was let out of his box.When they returned him, he climbed out of his basket,looked around and it was as though he was saying thank goodness Im back! We decided then to keep him as a permannent resident and he is one of the cats who is completely content living this rural life as long as he has a bit of personal attention in the evening.I know exactly how he feels but I should be so lucky!!
A couple more kittens have gone to homes but there are so many being brought in, yesterday after taking Felix and Katy to the vet (forher second vaccination),I collected yet another litter of unwanted kittens, we already have the feral mum here in our enclosure who is now spayed and is up for adoption in a farm/stables home.
Mei and I went to check on the 4 foals today, they are not really foals any longer but they are looking well, there is still grass for them to eat in their temporary home but we must have them back soon to have them gelded and for the farrier to trim their feet. The biggest problem will be catching the last one to be admitted- Finn - who is in desperate need of handling having had little whilst he has been away from the shelter this summer.That will be a nightmare rounding him up.
My friend Jane who fostered the last Staffordshire bull terrier we rescued from a dog pound has taken another called Boris.This one has found its way to her heart and she tells me she is very tempted to keep him.Mind you she was nearly keeping the last one too.It would be a marvellous home for this dog which was so close to death in the pound but it may mean our only staff foster home has gone.Even though Jane assures me this will not be the case she has only a small cottage and with one big Mastiff and Rosie Lee and Boris, it may prove not as easy to take in more foster dogs. Well whatever they decide is Ok by me.
Pictured here are Boris and Che the two dogs Jane and Ali fostered.Boris reclines on a chair and Che is sprawled out in the garden of my niece Vanessa and her husband Avtar. I have mentioned before that Che is adored by them all.The girls Sandi and Kiran had never been used to a dog round the house and there was some apprehension initially if they would take to him but now they would not part with him forthe world and think he is the best dog in the world. To think both these lovely natured dogs had previously faced death in the face at the pound is unbelievable.They are two very lucky dogs.

Sunday, 27 September 2009

Harvey is reserved already

Harvey Moon has been reserved today so once he is neutered(hopefully this week) he will be leaving us and equilibrium will once again be restored in my living room!Yippee.I dont mean to sound as if I dont like him, I do, hes a dear little dog but he needs more one to one with someone with time to train him.Actually I dont think I have ever known a dog I failed to find something redeeming about though I struggled a bit with the ones which left me with permanent scars and I was not too fond of the Akita which had me pinned to a wall,oh and the Great Dane which thought I was a suitable mate!!
Nothing else has been homed today,it has been very quiet.Krystal still has not integrated with the oldies- no fault of hers, William is still chasing her away.I will give it a few more days and then try with another group. She is such a gentle animal she can be easily bullied and that is simply unfair.There are sometimes animals which do not seem to be liked as well as others.My William lurcher is liked by all other dogs, even those which will usually attack another.He appeals to both males and females but then at the other end of the scale we have Tasha a collie cross who seems to antagonise other canines by simply looking at them and has to be kept on her own for her own safety.
I am really pleased that we have been offered two homes for feral cats in the Powys area,one farm wants 5 or 6 and the other people want two or three.Both have passed homechecks so now we will be arranging delivery in the next week.Our ferals go very slowly and the feral enclosure is full to capacity with 25 "inmates" I long to let them all go free here but there are already too many living here, at the last count we had 32 and with the adoptable cats and kittens our food bill is enormous.It is far better for them to live elsewhere,it is just a matter of finding suitable places for them, we have to be careful that they go to places where they will continue to be fed daily and not just be turned loose to fend totally for themselves.

Saturday, 26 September 2009

Connie is fine and Krystal arrives.

Good news this morning,Connie is fine and back to normal, the vet came out and gave her an injection. What a great relief. We think someone has given the ponies apples and with Connie having problems masticating her food she has swallowed a piece whole which had caused an obstruction.We will be putting up notices to ask people not to feed the ponies.As we are way off the beaten track this has never been a problem before but from hereon there will be signs everywhere.
Our pony Krystal has arrived from Liverpool, she has been looked after by Kirsty and Lynn at stables near our Liverpool shelter but it was felt she would be better spending the rest of her days here. Krystal is 21 and has been in our care for a year but she has melanomas above her back passage which need cleaning daily and the girls have managed wonderfully.However this year both girls will be away a great deal which has necessitated the move this weekend. We have put her in with the oldies group and apart from naughty William(in the purple coat) she has been accepted very well.Titch the last of the Prestatyn ponies is very interested and has spent the past hour following around.If William does not behave we will try Krystal with the Anglesey ponies but this would be the best group for her to join as they all need a daily feed with supplements and when some do and some dont it is hard to organise mealtimes.
New dog Harvey Moon was quite a handful last night.He is a lovely happy dog and excellent with other animals but he became obsessed with William and would not leave him alone, he wanted to play and William was not amused, in the end William and I took off to bed for a bit of peace! A 13 years old lurcher is not the ideal playmate for a lively little terrier(nor for me come to that!)there have already been a few enquiries for him so It does not look as though I will have him too long.He is a sweet natured dog but too hyper for me and my aging canine friends.
I wanted to order the rubber matting for our horse trailer butlack of funds means I will have to wait a bit longer.The trailer just needs floor and wall matting for the safety of the horses travelling within and on the ramp.As the ramp is now, the uncovered metal will make a very loud noise when a horse steps on to it, enough to frighten most equines,many of which dislike being boxed anyway.As soon as this is done we can start to bring back our ponies from the properties where they have been grazing all summer.Next week we will have to pay someone to bring those in Caernarfon back to the shelter as the grass there has completely depleted but hopefully we will have the trailer ready to return the others over the next couple of weeks.We took some hay to them today and will have to take a bale every day until their return.|I had hoped to have them back before now but the change in the weather meant it was more sensible to leave them where they are for the time being.I just dont want them without stabling (and food)in bad weather.
I heard from the lady who took Roxie , she tells me that it seems as though the cat has lived with her forever and they spent the evening together on the sofa with Roxie purring away madly.What great news.I could not be happier to hear that.
Well Krystal is about to have her bottom cleaned and although I am squeamish about looking at anything unpleasant I am going to force myself to step up to the mark so that I know exactly what has to be done should all the staff be taken ill(heaven forbid) and I am the only one around to administer to her.
When people say to me that they would love to work with animals not many think about the unpleasant jobs we all have to do.The constant cleaning up of excrement is hardly the most glamorous job in the world though I have to say that working with rescued animals has to be more ulfilling that working in a boarding kennels/cattery or a breeding establishment.At least in rescue work there is the reward of seeing our animals happy in a new caring environment and there is nothing to top this especially when it concerns a particularly neglected or abused animal.So if a bit of bottom cleaning is needed then its a small price to pay for the rewards reaped by the privilege of helping such animals .

Friday, 25 September 2009

Roxie, a black cat finds a home

I am starting today with an optimistic view to try and combat my blues of the last week.
Well there has been a very good start to the day with a longterm cat being homed.Roxie was a great favourite of mine, a lovely big and bonny black cat who was always"talking" to anyone who came near her pen.In spite of her desperate attempts to attract attention she failed to catch the eye of anyone until today -as I am always mentioning black cats are generally overlooked in favour of prettily marked cats.Well not today.Today Roxie rules supreme.Yes. Yes Yes. AND more kittens have been reserved so things are going well in the cattery.
I have had a message about Ben the old collie in the house,it seems there is a likelihood his owner may have somewhere to live soon and will be able to take him back.I have mixed feelings about this because he has failed to keep in touch in any way over the past 6 months and the only time he came was months ago with a friend of mine who brought him here.When I brought Ben out to meet his owner the dog wagged his tail briefly but raced back into the house seconds later and seemed totally indifferent.I have no wish to part dog and owner and if he wants him back then that is the decision I will have to abide by but does Ben want to go back? I did not want an extra dog,I have enough already but it concerns me that he showed such lack of interest in the man when he visited.Its a difficult one,they had been together for 12 years but probably Ben enjoys the canine company here and the daily runs in the fields here.He is also on pain killers taken twice a day so that will need to be kept up.Anyhow nothing is certain yet.
A little terrier called Harvey Moon has been admitted,he is in the house with the Maggie Marthas and Suzy the other old Yorkshire terrier and of course the last arrival old Teddy. I will take a photo of Harvey Moon later when he settles down a little.
Harveys owner has mental health problems and although he loves the dog a great deal,now feels unable to cope.There are days he told me,when he cannot leave his flat and so Harvey is not receiving the attention and care he needs.He was a nice man who obviously cared very much about the future of his dog and he has done the right thing which is to be applauded.Not only that, he has taken out a regular standing order to help fund the care of his dog.Now THAT is an unusual but very welcome occurrence.
The wonder of microchips- a rehomed dog of ours has been picked up, taken to another dog rescue who failed to check his microchip,passed him on to another person who took him to his vet and discovered the Freshfields microchip! Thankfully the dog is safe but I am very angry with the original people who adopted him and did not return him when he proved a problem but chose instead to take him to another rescue. I am angry too with the person who runs the rescue for failing to check for a microchip before rehoming him but at least he is safe now in what appears to be a decent home.Clearly my judgement let me down originally and someone else did the homecheck and passed it which proves that people can be so plausible- .Thank heavens that we have so few failures like this ,it would make me really question my ability to see through the often surface charm and pleasantness.Now a homechecker needs to go to see the new carer and ensure this is a permanent and responsible home. Homing animals is a minefield and is always a worry so I am grateful to those adopters who keep in touch and send regular photos of their pets.
Just as I am finishing this,Mei has run in to tell me that Connie, the shetland pony with the heart murmer is showing signs of "choke".She has discharge pouring from her nose and is lying down.The vet has been called, we are worried that Connies heart problem could affect her ability to recover from this. Please dont let it be a negative and sad end to the day.

Thursday, 24 September 2009

We lose dear Tara.

We lost Tara yesterday.She had been to the Vet who diagnosed pneumonia caused by fluid round her heart (she waS on heart and water tablets) and whilst I was In Southport attending the funeral of a close friend, the poor old lady deteriorated.Mei was worried enough to return after she went home for her dinner and she stayed with Tara until 1.30am when she passed quietly away.I am so grateful she did this as I would not have wanted Tara to be alone.Iwill continue the blog tomorrow,not in the right frame of mind today.

Monday, 21 September 2009

Tara is showing her age.

Little Katy is quickly becoming the pet of everyone here, she really is such a dear little pup, she is very quiet,in fact I havent heard her bark or yap at all yet.her skin problem has been confirmed as demodectic mange(as I suspected) but thankfully not sarcoptic which is terribly contagious to humans as well as dogs.I think she is already on the way to recovery but will need a few more baths before it starts to clear properly.People who see her seem to think she is part whippet and she definitely has some collie in her so it will be interesting to see her in a few months time(hope she has a home by then)
The jack Russell living under a caravan in Porthmadog has been caught and taken home by her rescuer who wants to give her a permanent home so that dogs future now looks assured.Its great when things work out so well and nice also to know there are such kind people about.It makes a very welcome change to hear such positive news.
The mum cat and her babies are causing some concern as Dorothy tells me that she is turning on her offspring.This could be due to the trauma of being moved when her babies are so young,this is always a worry and happens a lot but leaving her in a home where the family dog had already killed two of the litter was an absolute no no and left us with no choice but to move her to a place of safety.I have given her advice and we can only hope now that the babies will continue to do well without the nurturing of mum.
We have taken in a 9 years old cat whose owner had died,the daughter turned up here and announced that if we refused to take the cat, she would abandon it somewhere!!!Although we are full and have cats on our urgent waiting list,we could not turn this woman away with the cat.We simply could not take a chance of her bluffing,so many people do exactly as they promise and no doubt she would only have left the cat at the bottom of our track anyway.Poor cat to be treated in such a cavalier way and what on earth would her owner have said had she known what her daughter had in mind? When my own mother died my sister and I were frantic trying to find the right place for her terrier Rosie.We knew how much Rosie meant to her- I was unable to have her because Rosie hated other dogs and I as always had several.My sister had a cat which hated dogs but eventually we found the right place for her with a Freshfields supporter.Never in a million years would I have considered abandoning her and I cant understand how anyone could threaten this,do they have no respect for their deceased relatives? As the old saying goes "theres nowt so queer as folks" How very true.
I am upset today - Old Tara the collie(pictured here a few months ago) who lives in the office seems to be deteriorating.She has been on heart tablets for a year and has done very well,in fact had a new lease of life but her cough is coming back and her back legs are becoming weaker.She is having to be lifted up to go outside and I fear her days are numbered.Tara is part of the furniture here and dearly loved by all the staff so this is not good news.
On that note I will sign off,I am off to feed the pigs some tomatoes which they adore though as I look over to their paddock they are nowhere to be seen. The wind is getting stronger and it looks like it is about to rain.Probably they know this, animals seem to be able to predict weather changes far better than we humans.Perhaps Ill leave the tomatoes for tomorrow mornings piggy breakfast treat.
PS: forgot to mention (how could I forget this? )that the two FIV kittens were given a home yesterday and I have just received an email telling me they have settled in really well already. I am thrilled to see two of them go,just the three adults to place now. Placing FIV cats is a difficult task and when we are successful it gives us all a lift. A positive end to todays blog.

Saturday, 19 September 2009

The cat and kittens are safe and a puppy arrives

At last.the cat and kittens I was concerned about are safely at the shelter.I failed to get a reply from any of my phone calls so Roy(caernarfon shop manager who is always ready to help in a crisis)) went this morning to collect them and thankfully the remaining two kittens are still alive.They are all bonny including Mum who is a pretty tabby/tortie and white and they will be fostered by our new fosterer Dorothy who just happens to be volunteering here today along with her daughter Mel. She would like a pony but mum Dorothy is bringing her daughter to the shelter so she can find out for herself just how much work is involved caring for a pony.Thats the way to do it,youngsters need to know it is not all about riding and pony club but is hard work and has to be done no matter how bad the weather.
Regarding our charity shop in Caernarfon,we hope to be leaving our old premises which are in a terrible condition and moving to a much nicer shop next door so the move is already starting to take place though it will be a few weeks,maybe longer before we open officially.Our shops are the only regular income we have though I am tring to build up the standing orders, the more we have of those the higher our monthly income. We have been in Wales 6 years now and are gradually becoming better known but we still need more fundraisers to keep our profile high with fundraising events and bringing in more funds.Organising such things is definitely out of my comfort zone,I would not know where to start. It takes a long time for an organisation/charity to establish itself in a new area,from memory it took over 10 years in Liverpool before we began attracting much support for that shelter.Only 4 Years to go then!
People turned up today with a puppy they found whilst out"ferreting".I dont know how I managed to stay quiet when I really wanted to tell them what i thought of bloodsports, but I did manage to refrain from suitable caustic comments though with great difficulty.The pup is a little female about 9 weeks of age (pictured here) and she has a skin problem which they have had treated by a vet(so there is some good in them)They assured me it isnt mange but I will phone the vet Monday to get more details.She seems a little nervous at the moment but that could be just fear of being somewhere new.We have decided to call her Katy .It is entirely possible that she was abandoned because of her skin but when that improves she will be a lovely little dog. Its hard to see what she is at the moment, maybe part collie but she seems small for a collie pup.Time will tell.
Another stray/abandoned dog has turned up at a caravan park but is living underneath a caravan and so far has not been coaxed out.Its a jack russell and Rosie has promised to foster if they have success catching him/her.In liverpool we had a grasper pole which would have been ideal for this situation but because we are not as involved with dogs here I have never purchased one.First thing Monday I will place an order for one.We have a dog trap but it is too big for my current vehicle to transport so a smaller one is needed though we will have to wait for our finances to improve before I can purchase this.At the moment it is necessities only.
Its so far been an incredibly quiet weekend for homing animals.We had one visitor today looking at the cats but she could not find one she liked.Very disappointing.

Friday, 18 September 2009

Our pet sheep are investigated!

A bit of good news,I had an email from the lady with the shetlands,she has found a good home for them.That is a load off my mind.The other bit of good news is that someone has been to see the FIV cats and is returning Saturday with her partner but is adamant she will be taking one of them.Susan lives in a flat which is ideal for an FIV positive cat. There are still 4 more from this feline family but its a start and one less means more room in the pen for the remaining 4.The 2 kittens were old enough to be tested yesterday and unfortunately they too have tested positive for the virus.What a shame.
We have had a visit from the Trading Standards today about our pet sheep!! Ijust knew our horrid neighbour was going to make waves about something,he has been watching the staff walk the dogs recently and when I say watch I mean not just glancing over but standing and staring.They just wanted to know if they were registered but what is behind it? My thoughts are that the sheep annoy him with their bleating in the morning as they are waiting to be fed.It IS loud but for heavens sake he has moved to live in sheep country, what on earth does he expect?.This is the only way he can try to do something because if he complained to the council about bleating sheep he would be laughed out of their offices. I would hate to live his life,a professional complainer so embittered and discontented that his spare time is spent watching his neighbours (not just me) and searching for yet another reason to contact the Council etc. What a waste of a life.
On to more pleasant things,it was my day off yesterday so I joined a friend to climb up Mount Snowdon and at the summit saw a bird I did not recognise.On returning home I looked it up in my bird book and found it was a red legged partridge.They are not indiginous to the Uk, rather they were imported from France a long time ago.If I can upload the photo from my mobile I will post it on another blog.It was an attractive little creature and almost tame, we were able to get quite close to it for a photo opportunity.Whilst on the topic of birds, there was a fantastic documentary on television wednesday night .Land of the Volcano featured amazing wildlife including the most stunning birds of paradise.What an experience to see them so close,must remember to watch it again next week.
I still have been unable to contact the woman with the cat and kittens, she is not answering her messages.I will have to resign myself to the fact that theres nothing more I can do. A tiny kitten has been found today in Porthmadog,Mion is going to collect and foster. It may be that her mum cat will adopt this little orphan and if she does that would be the best result of all.Its so hard to raise a tiny kitten and they really do need the comfort of a mother cat and of course the antibodies from her milk.Fingers crossed.
Mion has just rung,the kitten has sniffles so she cannot take the chance of trying her with the resident mum and babies.It is a tortoishell and white female - nearly always female though I read recently that someone had one which turned out to be a male,the odds of which are incredible.
Well it is 5pm and dogwalking time, the last one before the final 7pm exercise so time to go.The hounds are waiting!

Wednesday, 16 September 2009

The cats enjoy a nibble of Grass

We have been growing grass in pots for the cats in the feral enclosure and before anyone reports us for sending our animals into a drug induced stupor it is plain ordinary grass we all have in our gardens! The cats showed great interest and within minutes were investigating and enjoying a nibble.I thought it would do them good as the enclosure has a concrete floor and some of the cats have been in it for almost a year now.I would love the ground to be grass but it would be impossible to clean with so many cats so this is a way of letting them have access to it whilst they are incarcerated.
Today I visited Thandi in her new home. Thandi was the neglected German Shepherd brought in by the police a few months ago after she was abandoned on the bypass.What a difference in her now, it was heartwarming to see her running round with the other dogs.Of course when she was admitted she was unable to do this because her muscles were atrophied through lack of exercise(we think she had been chained or left in a shed for a long time) I just love doing these follow ups,its a great feeling.I think she knew me though nowadays she gives kisses to everyone she meets so it was impossible to know but I like to think she did recognise me.
Whilst I was out someone was meant to bring in a stray mother cat and kittens because her dog had killed two.As it was urgent I told her to bring them in immediately,she was so concerned but guess what, she failed to turn up and is not answering her phone, why do they do this? We will all be worrying now.I will keep trying her phone.
One of the builders who already has a neutered cat has been showing interest in the kittens and his wife came today and chose two of the fluffy tabbies,also an adult cat has gone.They are moving but very slowly and there is such a long waiting list now. There are about 12 cats on the list and several litters of kittens waiting for a space here.
Calls and emails are starting to come in with requests to take in ponies.This happens every year at this time.When winter beckons people start to think of the extra work and expense so this is the time they take action to find somewhere to take their unwanted equines.Today there is a request to take in two section a ponies and yesterday a call came to help with two shetlands though in all fairness that call seemed a genuine one.The problem is that we are now full and cannot posssibly find space for another.This leaves me with a problem, what advice can I give? All the shelters I know aRE full and many of the larger ones do not take gifted horses (those owned by people)but keep their spaces for cruelty cases.We have a couple of homes we are checking out for ponies for but there is only so much that can be done and so few homes available. Its hard to face up to the fact that it is not possible to help every animal which we hear about and believe me it is not something I will ever get used to. I prefer to try every option I can think of before facing up to this fact. If only there was less indiscriminate breeding of ponies, this summer almost every field in this area has contained mares with foals at foot.It seems that owning a mare means that she MUST be put in foal.WHY,WHY, WHY????I would like to send these people to the horse sales to see for themselves where so many end up.Oops Im off on another rant so I had best put an end to it before I lose my blog readers.Apologies everyone.

Tuesday, 15 September 2009

Krystal will soon be joining our family in Wales.

The break is over and I am back refreshed and raring to go!! The weather is so good we have put off bringing our horses back until next week, another week for our own fields to rest will not do any harm at all. I had a lovely email and photos from Gels new owners and they are delighted with him.He has started his vaccinations ready to become a jet setter so he will be ready to visit his second home abroad next year. Lucky dog.I am seriously thinking of putting myself up for adoption!
I have been contacted to help with 13 unwanted ferrets so if any blog readers can offer help or have any contacts pleaselet me know,I know that Liverpool Freshfields is full so no point trying there at the moment and we already have a ferret in situ which is taking up the only suitable residence.
We have just had a visit from the new Donkey Sanctuary Inspector for this area, Heulwyn and her regional manager Molly had been on a callout to check the condition of one nearby and came to introduce themselves.There are not many donkeys round here though last week I received a call about a neglected one in Anglesey which later turned out to be a false alarm.So often calls like that ARE false alarms but of course we never know, so every call needs to be followed up and now I have a contact to whom I can pass on such calls which is very useful.
I have always loved Donkeys and my first sight of a really neglected donkey came when I was on a seal saving mission with the conservation organisation "Sea Shepherd".In the seventies A group of us travelled to Ireland where fishermen had in previous years killed baby seals in the belief they were threatening their livelihood.We camped out on a remote island called Inishglora in County Mayo and watched over the seal pups during the breeding season.It was quiet an awesome experience but no pups were killed that year.However, I was very disturbed to find a donkey on this remote island, he had swollen knees and could hardly walk.He had been alone on the island for 18 years! Can you imagine that? He had been abandoned there by his owner when he no longer wanted him.There was a local superstition that ill luck would come to those who harmed a donkey so this was deemed a better way of dealing with them.many such animals faced the same or worse fate. Unwilling to leave this poor animal once I had seen him,I contacted the Donkey sanctuary and to cut a very long story short he eventually was taken there and spent the rest of his life in luxury and even found a donkey friend with whom he became inseperable.He was named ISlander and featured in much of their earlier publicity and reading material..I will never forget my first sight of him in that lonely plase and donkeys have always since then held a very special place in my heart.
Back to Horses - We have an old grey pony called Krystal (pictured here)in Liverpool which is cared for by two members of the Liverpool staff.Krystal is stabled just a mile away from the shelter but her main carer Kirsty is studying to be a vet and this year she will be away from the shelter quite a lot so it has been decided to bring the pony to Wales where we can continue her care.It is hoped she will join the Anglesey ponies and fit into their little group.The only foreseeable problem could be in the spring when she comes into season,mares can cause high jinks in their fields if surrounded by eager (though impotent suitors)Anyway she has to come here, she is our responsibility so it is likely this will happen in the next couple of weeks.
The two cross labrador pups have gone off to their home but not before all the staff had fallen in love with them.Henry and William had the nicest temperaments of any pups I have seen.Even when they met horses for the first time there was no aggression, no barking, just waggy tails and curiosity.Lovely little dogs.If only all dogs were of the same disposition.There have been some hairy moments with Purdey the cross dalmation/collie who most definitely does not like cats and has to be kept on a lead now at all times.She can only have a free run when out of sight of other animals which is very restrictive in a place like this.It is such a shame because in other ways she is a perfect animal, great on the lead, loves children,house trained and friendly with everyone she meets.There will be the right person for her,I just wish he/she/they would turn up soon!
Now Ben is on tablets for his arthritic pain,he seems happier in himslelf and even jumped up at me to make a fuss which is the first time ever.Clearly they are doing him the world of good already.

Friday, 11 September 2009

Lots of new Arrivals

I have had more trouble with computer or rather the electrics in the office so Roy from the shop has been up to help put me back online again.There have been a few animal abandonments lately.Vanessa was disturbed the other night by her dog barking and when she went to the door there was a box on her doorstep with a mother cat and her kitten inside! This can be a problem when people get to know that someone works at an animal shelter -its even easier for them to dump their unwanted pets there than perhaps having to answer any uncomfortable questions.Then I went out to collect 2 pups whose owner had abandoned them,fortunately a neighbour had taken them in to his garden so they were safe until I arrived. I have a home for them already , this adorable pair (pictured here) will be going together.After I posted their photo on the website I was deluged with calls for them and to be honest more than a couple sounded excellent but I think I have made the right choice. Then I went over to Anglesey to collect some cats and kittens whose owner was terminally ill.Pictured here are Tippy and her week old babies, Tishy(Tippys sister) and her 2 kittens which are about 12 weeks of age and another litter of 4 which were abandoned and brought in by someone who discovered them today in a box on a local estate.
Another rabbit has arrived, Hugo is a black male bunny abandoned locally,another one to have his bits off as soon as posssible! If everyone neutered their rabbits, the males would not have to live a solitary existence, they can then be paired with a female or sometimes as mentioned before another male.Whatever takes their fancy!
Its been lovely weather today, the sun has been out and both humans and animals seem more cheerful.There are builders here at the moment making some alterations to the passageway outside the kitten room,making it more weatherproof ready for the winter.Well actually we need it now, the rain has been torrential here.Anyway by mid afternoon it was really warm and the builders had taken off their tops (as they do) soI thought it was time I had a little sun and vitamin C on my skin so rolled up my trousers,settled myself in a good position for the sun and guess what- the sun went in and clouds filled the sky.TYPICAL!
Im not sure if I mentioned some months ago that I was temporarily caring for a 12 years old collie called Ben whose owner had lost his home.Well six months later I still have him and not a word from the owner.Theres gratitude for you.Anyhow I have become very fond of Ben, he lives with Molly and Meg in the house and I have come to the conclusion he will be here for life.Lately he has seemed not so strong on his back legs so he has been to the vet for a check up and he has arthritis in his spine.Poor old man will now be on pain killers daily to alleviate the pain and Im sure this will improve his quality of life. He is a good dog and very affable with the others, his only problem is that he has a tendency to run in the garden and have a good bark over the fence which of course worries me so I am constantly calling him indoors. I keep expecting my delightful neighbour to make a complaint to the council.In fact I am sure he has already done so,it would be out of character for him to ignore it!
Mion and Trish from our Portmadog shop have been up to collect Tippy and her new babies,Mion will be adding them to her little family of foster babies and they will come back to us when they are weaned and ready to set out on their own without Mum. Foster homes are wonderful because they free up a pen which would otherwise be occupied by mum and babies for up to two months.They really are invaluable to an animal shelter like ours with limited space and facilities.
Now this weekend I AM going away for a few days so next blog will be Monday.I hope nothing untoward occurs whilst I am away though if all is completely without problems and crisis and I receive no calls requesting my advice/help I am always a little put out because it proves I am not TOTALLY indispensable! UNTHINKEABLE!

Monday, 7 September 2009

Our horse trailer arrives

Well the weekend did not materialise but I decided to have a "Blog Break" anyway,it can be hard to think of interesting things to talk about every day and I thought a break might give me some inspiration though that remains to be seen.
So whats new? Washi the returned dog which upset me so much has settled down well in his new home,he is now called kai and I have had photos of him emailed to me today,he looks happy and has found a new companion in Belle with whom he is sharing his home.
New dog Ty is improving as the week goes by though I have had no interest in him at all, whoever said looks dont matter should work with rescued dogs and they will soon see that is untrue. The pretty ones are always snapped up and the plain ones left behind. Just every now and again someone will turn up who actually prefers to take on a less than beautiful animal and they can see the beauty which others fail to recognise. Thats the kind of person we need for Ty and for Purdey(pictured here)who has been here too long already.
2 more adult cats have been homed and a few more kittens but 2 adults Boots and Sox have been admitted and another litter so the numbers remain about the same.Its a nice day today and the permanent cats are enjoying being outside in the warmth.Out of all the cats roaming free here we only have a couple of hunters amongst them but this morning I found 2 dead voles and I am almost certain I know which cat is the culprit. The two tortoishell sisters,one of which is now domestic and her sister who remains feral also have different personalities.Domestic cat likes to be comfortable on the sofa in the conservatory,feral sister likes to be out hunting and rarely enters the conservatory.I am sure she is the phantom Vole killer.Upsetting though it is to find lifeless bodies in the conservatory this is the nature of cats and I cannot be annoyed at something which is natural to her albeit repugnant to me. Im just thankful there are not more with her instincts patrolling the property.
Rosie is fostering the little Staff bull terrier called Needles,she is a sweet friendly dog who appears to love everybody she meets.I am not the biggest fan of bull breeds but have to admit this one is very loveable and I hope she will not be with us for too long.
I have just realised the photo I tried to publish last week of Gail with her dogs did not materialise so here it is again.
The farrier has been here today,nearly £200 it has cost! How can I bring more money in to the shelter? More thought has to be given to this, organising events is not my forte and what I need is a fundraising group to do this.Perhaps its time I asked the local newspaper to give us some publicity.
We have our horse trailer now and I am so excited,now we will be able to transport our own horses instead of paying other people.It is an old one but in excellent condition and being an Ifor Williams trailer it is hardy and well built. I cant believe we have been donated this, so few people give something for nothing and I am so grateful to Jane and Jonathan for being so kind.I doubt I will be able to tow with my 4x4 as I can barely drive let alone tow a horse trailer but Barbara is experienced at this and maybe one of the other girls might learn in time.

Thursday, 3 September 2009

Who really writes this blog?

I am away this weekend on a much needed break from the shelter and will not be back until Monday.In the meantime I found a photo of Gail walking her dogs during her teabreak and couldnt resist publishing the photo of Felix on my shoulders whilst I was writing my blog last week.Or is it Felix who writes under a pseudonym?You decide!

Connie gives us a fright.

The swallow babies have reduced in number,one has vanished, the remaining two are being fed by mum,I havent see them fly yet and hope the cats are not responsible for the disappearance of baby no 3.The rafters are too high for me to replace the nest, even an extending ladder does not reach.All we can do is keep an eye on them during
2 adult cats have been homed together ,3 gone altogether so I am delighted that they are starting to move and it makes room for a few of those which have been on the waiting list for some time.Of course often when I contact the owners of these cats, they have already managed to place them which is good and means I can cross them off our rapidly expanding waiting list. The litter of kittens which came in are beautiful, real chocolate box cats(see photo)very fluffy and prettily marked- the black one has shades of brown in her coatand the tabbies are simply stunning. My very first cat was a tabby and I have always had a soft spot for these.I have often mentioned Rhian (on the right of the photo)who cares for ther cats here so it is time I introduced her so people can see her and know about whom I am speaking.Mei,ofcourse has been featured in my blog before.The other member of staff who cares for the cats is Gail and I will introduce her as soon as I have a photo.
Another chaotic evening occurred -last night Mei was going home late, around seven forty five and thank goodness she was! Connie one of our elderly shetlands was fitting and staggering around the field,by the time I arrived there she had collapsed so the vet was rung. We covered her with a rug and she remained in this state for sometime though by the time the vet arrived(having been held up by driving rain through which he was unable to see)she was on her feet again and we had managed to move her into the dry field shelter with the other ponies. He diagnosed a serious heart murmer and gave her an injection,he is calling again this morning to check on her though today she seems back to normal.Usually Mei goes home at seven and last night she was late,what a stroke of luck(fate?) that she spotted her, otherwise poor little Connie would not have been able to make it to the shelter and would probably have contracted Pneumonia. As from tonight we are bringing them all into the stables so we can be sure Connie is under safely under cover.Pictured here is Connie(on left)with Noddy our oldest shetland.We think Connie is around 30 years old but we have had her at the shelter for 4 years, she came to us from a wildlife centre in the midlands who could no longer care for her. Her original owner had placed here there and was furious when he discovered she had been moved here though after visiting once and promising to help financially we never heard another word!!
Ty dog is only slightly calmer,anybody who takes him on needs to be very active and Misty the red and white cross bearded collie has gone on a trial basis to people in Gloucester. When they arrived Misty was a bit overbearing with their smaller dog though no aggression was shown so I am hopeful it will work out.Watch this space!