Rural living has a way of sucking you into animal-ownership. Empty space = room for critters. It's as simple as that. I recently took stock of our current situation and this is where we stand:
* 3 cats (about to be 4....more on that shortly)
* 1 dog
* 3 chickens (and 2 more coming next month)
* 2 goats
And that doesn't even include the 3 mice in cages in my sons' room......*sigh*
The other day my youngest son appeared at the front door with his hands cupped.....
"Mom, I saved a bird!" he proudly exclaimed.
He had found it floundering around in the water at the edge of the pond. It was a very young bird, but had enough feathers that we could tell it was a Chickadee. We went back to where he found it, but saw no nest in any of the branches in the area. The poor little thing was wet and cold, so we brought it into the house and I set it up on some fleece scraps and put it in a box under a desk lamp. It warmed up and dried off fairly quickly. I did a quick search with Audubon on-line and discovered it was most likely a fledgling....a young bird that had left the nest but really didn't have its act together yet! So, on their advice, I got a hanging flower pot, filled it with hay and a scrap of fleece, and went out to hang it up outside, like a "nest" for the bird. It was due to rain hard that night so I hung it up inside our pop-up camper, with the door open. The next morning the bird was on the floor, so I put it back in the "nest." The next day it was gone, so I have to assume it finally found its wings and went on its way!
But it's not over yet, my friends! Oh no. The night before last, my oldest son came home with a kitten.....
He found it up the road, in the road, and picked it up and brought it home. The poor thing was NOT well. It was sneezing and had a goopy nose and runny eyes. Never mind the horrible sore on the top of its head (I'll leave that one as-is.....trust me you don't want more detail!!!!). Yesterday hubby took it to the vet. I was ready for the worst (Feline Leukemia or some other awful, fatal disease). But it turns out he just has a bad upper-respiratory infection and CAN be treated!! Cat-sap that I am, I was thrilled. Not so thrilled with what this is going to cost me, but I couldn't just leave this poor creature to fend for itself out in the wild. He wouldn't have made it out there and the end wouldn't have been quick. Poor baby! So he spent last night at the vet to get cleaned up, neutered, and started on antibiotics. Should be ready to come home some time today.
Which brings us to 4 cats....
It's a good thing I love animals!....