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Always in Our Hearts

They Play Now Across the Rainbow Bridge

Arie, and his brother, Gingi, lost their mother to a road accident when they were only 3 weeks old and didn't yet have their eyes open. He was a bottle-fed baby and the apple of my eye. He, along with Gingi, turned out to have a great mothering instinct and new kittens were immediately taken under his wing. He was "mother" to Flora, Flossie and Little Mouse. Alas, at only 4 years of age he suffered a thromboembalism. I'm sure he is still acting "black and white cat crazy" in the lands beyond the rainbow bridge.

Buffy was rescued when her 'owner' went to Alaska and dumped out her cats on the street in front of my brother's house. Buffy was the Greta Garbo of cats and really didn't like any other cats around her. She was named Buffy the Vampire Kitty because she loved to nurse on my neck at bedtime. A world traveler, Buffy 'drove' (mostly sitting on the headrest behind the driver!) across the U.S. (twice), spent time in Paris, Switzerland, and every summer had a holiday in Germany, before moving for a final time to Tel Aviv, Israel.

Emily was the last surviving adult member of the original feral colony that lived under the house where our rescue efforts first began in earnest. She was trapped and spayed after she was an adult as she was extremely feral. Emily mostly stayed on the front porch or under the front porch. She was the most wary of cats that we have encountered and that is saying quite a lot. She always came up for her meals but she kept her distance. In the last few months of her life, Emily mellowed and began venturing within a couple of feet of her human providers and seemed to enjoy sitting a short distance away from her human "company" on the porch. She came down with a severe virus during the winter and, despite best efforts by our vets, her body could not fight off the overwhelming infection.

Little Mouse didn't have much of a chance at life but what he had he embraced with an indominatable spirit. Rescued with his sibs, Flora and Flossie as a tiny kitten, he suffered from severe Gingivitis. At only 2 years old, he went into cardiac arrest during an operation to have troublesome teeth removed. He spent nearly two weeks in a coma. He was a real little fighter though, and while he emerged blind and unable, initially, to walk, remember how to eat or relieve himself, he soon learned those skills anew. A year later he was so active that I didn't realize he hadn't regained his sight until I rearranged the furniture! The picture (left) shows him atop the refrigerator, yet, he was completely blind. When he was four years old, like his "Mama" Arie, he suffered a thromboembalism. It looked like he would survive that too but on the morning of the day he was scheduled to come home from intensive care, he suffered a fatal heart attack. You can see a video of my brave Mousie learning to walk again and rejoice in his love of life and enduring spirit.

Minette was saved due to her friendly disposition. She came out to the street, seeking a friendly face and a loving touch as a Hyde Park neighbor, Sophie, was walking home from work. Seeing the desperate condition of this cat, Sophie alerted us to her plight. Minette had been homeless for about five years. During this time, she lived under a porch across the street from her former "owners" who no longer provided even the basics for her. She had no consistent source of water or food and in spite of her terrible health, she received no vet care. The neighbors knew she was there, but she had apparently become invisible to them. Minette was visibly miserable with ulcers and crusty skin all over her body. No one helped her, and until the day that she approached Sophie, Minette lived without the smallest comfort.

We are so very grateful to be able to say that, thanks to generous donations, Minette received the extensive medical care that she needed and she was able to live out her golden years enjoying every creature comfort that she had previously been denied. One day in late spring 2015, Minette slipped away from us and crossed the rainbow bridge while lounging in her favourite sunny spot.

Mischa was rescued as a tiny kitten off of the mean streets of New York City in the frigid winter of 1998. As a kitten, he was nicknamed Mischa Mechant (bad Mischa, in french) as he made it his life's mission to plague Buffy who wanted nothing to do with a kitten in the least. He was always a very sweet cat, without any aggressive tendencies and, when Pandy was introduced to the household, he found his soulmate.

At the age of nearly 18, a routine vet visit found that Mischa had an aggressive form of cancer that had spread and so we lost out chat mechant. He was loved and loving every day of his life and I've no doubt but that he has found Pandy across the rainbow bridge and the two of them are filled with joy at being together again.

When I lived on Dizengoff Street in Tel Aviv, I got to know my downstairs neighbors well: They were Holocaust survivors and they had been unable to have children. They did, however, have an elderly cat that they had rescued from the street as a kitten and the sun rose and set on their Mitzi. I arrived home one day to find an ambulance at the door and my neighbor being carried down the stairs on a stretcher. He saw me and grabbed my hand, "Mitzi, take care of our Mitzi, please, please."

Taking care of Mitzi was easier promised than done as she had fled the apartment building in the commotion. I searched far and wide for her but it was nearly two weeks later that a barely recognizable little cat, literally, dragged herself from between two buildings and collapsed at my feet as I was calling for her. It was Mitzi. She was so dehydrated and starved that she needed a week in intensive care at the vet clinic. Her Master did not survive the stroke and her Mistress needed to go into an assistive living situation that did not allow for pets. But I made good on my promise and Mitzi spent her remaining golden years in safety and comfort. I took care of our Mitzi.