Rescue Tail / Back on his feet again. 

By Cathy Baier

Turk began the first of his multiple lives in a feral cat colony where he was born. A local cat advocate working to reduce the  feral cat overpopulation in her neighborhood was able to trap him and his littermates and bring them to us. We vaccinated, tested, and spayed/neutered them in preparation for adoption. He found a home in the fall of 2019.

We didn’t see Turk again until the following summer. Our animal control officer got a call about a cat under a car who was reported to be having a hard time. As soon as she caught him, she realized something was very wrong. He appeared to be having neurological problems and was not mobile.   She scanned him for a microchip and discovered it was Turk. She immediately took him to the vet. Suspecting he had been exposed to some type of poison, the vet ran toxicology tests.  The tests did not reveal a specific toxin but it could not be ruled out so his treatment covered all the bases in an effort to save him. Once released from the hospital, he came back to us and we began monitoring him while providing supportive care. The owner was notified but Turk stayed with us. Slowly he began to show improvement and regained some use of his legs.  Over time, his health and his mobility returned and he was able to walk. Well, sort of… His legs wobbled and and sometimes he’d just flop over on his side as he crossed the room. It was hard to watch but quite honestly, it probably bothered us more than it bothered him. His attitude was great and in every other way, his health was returning.

Although the effects of his condition left Turk with a permanent disability,  his sweet nature made him a favorite among both staff and volunteers. It was a common sight to walk by his room and see someone sitting with Turk on their lap or playing with him.  He loved his toys! He also loved other cats but his handicap gave him an odd way of playing. This  proved too much for some of the other young adult cats his age. But the kittens were all about him, and his “floppy ways” made him that much more fun!  He became sort of a well-loved big brother to the little ones.

Eventually someone came looking to adopt a cat and saw what we saw in Turk. It was one day short of one year in the fall of 2020 that our wobbly boy got adopted a second time.  But unfortunately  Turk and the adopter’s resident cat were not compatible  and he came back to us a few months later.

Still as sweet, Turk settled back in to shelter life and re-established himself as the Rock Star to kittens, volunteers, and staff.  Everyone loved this goofy cat!  For whatever reasons though, that love wasn’t felt by any potential adopters.  The months passed and Turk was coming up on his second year anniversary with us.

About this same time, one of our longtime and very dedicated volunteers was feeling ready to adopt. She had recently lost a cat and wanted a friend for herself and her other cat.  Being a volunteer, she was familiar with all our cats. She put a great deal of thought into which cat might work best for her situation.  After considering age, gender, personality, and all the other factors that would increase the chances of a successful match, she decided that Turk might be the one.   It turns out her instincts were right. Turk is now enjoying what we expect will be the long and happy life of a well-loved indoor cat! Congratulations Turk; you’ve earned it!!

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