Thursday, July 15, 2010


I'm gonna rant for a moment!
I have almost gotten used to people dumping animals near our property, it's just one of those sad, unfortunate realities of living in the country. We have found abandoned dogs, deathly ill cats, and every kind of varmint imaginable that people trap in town and then release here. In fact, we actually caught someone in the act a few weeks ago. I was out mowing the lawn and saw a man pull onto our gravel road and grab a live trap out of the bed of his pickup truck, before I could get over there to interfere I witnessed him setting a nice fat pair of squirrels loose in our yard. A week or two later the same thing happened, although bunnies were the critter of choice that day. Finally, a couple of weeks ago, Gary was close enough to say something when the same man tried to repeat the process. Gary yelled to him, "What are you doing?" The man seemed surprised for some reason that Gary would take offense to him turning animals loose all over our property and replied, " Gosh, it's just a squirrel!" To which Gary quipped something like, "Then let him be 'just a squirrel' in your yard!"  I understand that people sometimes think that they are doing the animal a favor by letting them go in the country, they have this idealistic image that the animal will scamper off, romping about the fields and have a long wonderful life. I also see how they might look at our place (which sometimes looks like some sort of insane petting zoo) and think that we are such huge animal lovers that we would surely love to have a few more, but the sad truth is, if any animals make it past the barn cats and the dogs, then generally our neighbors dispatch with any survivors. We live in the middle of farm fields and farmers don't take kindly to lots of imported wild critters eating their crops or unwanted domestic animals chasing their livestock. Animals that are displaced-especially this time of year when they likely have young somewhere-don't do well. Territories have been established and releasing a disoriented new-comer into the mix is really unfair to the animals.

Yesterday morning I was working in my home office when I heard a distressed "Meeooww! Meeoow!" It did not sound like any of our cats, but I peeked around the house to make sure, and all three of them (yes, we stupidly have three house cats) were sleeping contently in the living room. The meowing continued, and as I listened it became apparent that the sound was coming from outside the front window. I opened the door in time to see a very young kitten scamper away into the bushes. I followed the kitty, and when I called out to it, immediately the small kitten came toward me and started purring and kneading the branch that it had climbed onto. Clearly this was not a feral cat, it was not one that had wandered away from a neighbor's barn, it was extremely friendly and most certainly came from a litter in someones home. She just wanted to snuggle and be held. I wondered why someone would think that this was the right thing to do to a kitten, and I wondered what the fate of her litter-mates had been. Did they think that I would like another barn cat? I have barn cats-they are spayed or neutered and have their shots, they have been together for a long time and don't welcome unfamiliar cats into their circle......and I most certainly don't need another house cat! The day before I found her we had a 2+ inch rainfall, it was 100+ degree heat index on the day I found her. We have a no-kill shelter within 20 minutes of our place, but yet they chose to dump her here and let her take her chances. Yes, I am an animal lover, and yes, I will find her a home (quickly-before my husband tries to keep her), but I wish people would take more responsibility and realize that it is not up to everyone else to clean up their messes.

Yeah, she's looking a little TOO comfortable here.....BUT SHE'S NOT STAYING!!!!

Thank-you for allowing me to get on my soapbox for a moment.


Unknown said...

3 is an odd number and in my opinion 4 sounds much better! You were meant to hear her little cries plus you took such cute pictures of her should definitely keep her; of course this is coming from someone who has 11 cats!

Shula said...

She is a cute girl. We have just had an older cat dumped on us. He's not as friendly yours, and we haven't been able to get close to him yet, but he likes to sit outside our window at night and meow. He is starting to make friend with the barn cats so hopefully is catchable soon. Hope you find your new addition a new home soon.

Heidi said...

Well said!

It is nice to be posting and not have the most cats! We 'only' have 10 now. :)

Judy T said...

I can get on my soapbox about people dumping animals as well. We adopted our dog (or did he adopt us?) after he was dumped near my parent's farm. He was at that awkward stage of a big dog where he was still a puppy (then about a year old) and already weighed 75 lbs. My parents didn't want him and were worried he would get into the livestock. So before someone shot him- we ended up with a dog. A bit rough around the edges at first, but he's turned into a wonderful companion. I've found boxes of kittens abandoned at stop signs... the list goes on.
The kitten is quite cute. Does she have a name yet?

Michelle said...

This, after Tammy's post about the wonderful torti cats who have owned her.... :-)

We don't get dumped on out here; thankfully. We're off the beaten path, I guess (dead-end narrow gravel lane). I wouldn't mind another barn cat; Oreo has been lonely since Ozzie died. But unless it just "showed up," Rick wouldn't say yes.

Karen Anne said...

She's beautiful. All cats are beautiful.

I'm hoping her littermates weren't dumped there at the same time.

Karen Anne said...

I just noticed her tummy. Is that just lighter fur, or is it shaved and she might have been spayed? They're spaying cats at very very early ages nowadays.

Kristin said...

I wish I could get another cat. She'd even match the ones I already have. *pout*

Why does your blog prompt me for a password everytime I visit it?

Sabrina Wille Erickson said...

Poor kitty! She's a doll and I'm glad you are working so hard to find her a home.

Your rant is so justified. It is not fair to 'country' people to have animals dumped on them. And it is not fair to the animals either.

Growing up, my dad had the strict policy of shooting any stray animal that got dumped off. Of course, it broke my little-girl heart. But his reasons were: the animal would starve on it's own, it could be carrying disease into yards with healthy pets, and (in the case of dogs) it could pose a threat to the livestock and/or little kids in the area. He didn't take any pleasure in it, and I remember crying my eyes out over an emaciated white mongrel that greeted us at the schoolbus stop one morning. But over time, I have come to understand his policy was a lot less cruel than some of the other things that happen to strays.

Crosswinds Farm said...

Kristi, stop enabling!!! LOL.

Shula, good luck with your new little friend.

Heidi-that's a lot of kitties!!

No, Judy, it doesn't have a name because I'm not keeping it LOL ;0)

Michelle, you are lucky that they don't get dumped at your place..I wish it didn't happen here either.

Karen Anne, she has light spots all over-she is a tourtiseshell.

Crosswinds Farm said...

Kristin, that is so funny because I talked to Justin earlier and mentioned that you would really love this kitty : ).

Sabrina, You are right, what your dad did was much more humane than the fate that most of these strays see.

Christine said...

Oh, do I ever hear ya. She's awfully cute isn't she?

Teresa said...

I have four cats that come in my house. It's perfectly fine. She's lucky to have been dumped near someone who will care enough to find her a home. My sister and my mother and I tend to be where they all end up around her. And she does look quite cozy!

Candy said...

What a beautiful little tortise shell. Hubbby says you need our drop off puppy to go with your drop off kitty. What do you think?

Spinners End Farm said...

I wish we were closer...she's a cutie and I'd take her! We just built a barn and no barn cat yet...Coming to MI?

Sherry :)

ps. Completely justified rant.

Mom L said...

I applaud your rant, but definitely not the people who caused it. I'm not a farm-bred woman, but I grew up in the "country" in Florida and we "found" many stray dogs and cats when I was a kid. Mom's instinct always kicked in as soon as we went to her with hopeful faces - even if no animal was in sight - "No, you can't keep it!"

I think you should name the kitten... :)

Nancy in Iowa

Chanin said...

Great rant! After living here three yrs I can't believe we have had only one dog dumped. Thankfully he found the perfect home(it was not with us). One story I heard of a local dumped dog was it was caught chasing livestock. It was shot and showed up with a hole in its chest. People don't realize what happens to dumped animals.

tbsomeday said...

this sounds a lot like the "i'm not getting anymore chickens" claims you make
seems like she might be staying....she's awfully cute :)

ah..yes..i hear you on the dumping...people just have no clue..i know they think it's a better situation than possible euthanasia at the pound...but it most likely isn't (plus i think they make you pay to drop off animals)
like you said...most farms already have dogs/cats that will chase off any newbies and possibly kill them or injure them
many dropped off animals are so freaked that they won't seek out people until they are in bad shape if at all...and many die first from cars or coyotes or whatever

"A Dog Sits Waiting

A dog sits waiting in the cold autumn sun,
Too faithful to leave, too frightened to run.
He's been here for days now with nothing to do
But sit by the road, waiting for you.
He can't understand why you left him that day
He thought you and he were stopping to play.
He's sure you'll come back,
and that's why he stays
How long will he suffer: How many more days?
His legs have grown weak,
his throat's parched and dry
He's sick now from hunger and falls with a sigh.
He lays down his head and closes his eyes
I wish you could see how a waiting dog dies."

By Kathy Flood

Kristin said...

Maybe I could talk my boyfriend into it. I'm pretty sure he doesn't want one at all, but I'm pretty good at talking.

Nancy K. said...

The worst of it is that the idiots who dropped her off won't get the mama kitty spayed and she'll have another litter in a couple of weeks.

Some people just shouldn't be allowed to have animals.

I'd love to take her but can't afford the shots and spaying. As we all know, there's no such thing as a "free" kitten!

Karen Anne said...

Does that adorable ktty have a name yet :-)

Crosswinds Farm said...

We found a wonderful home for the kitty : ). Thanks everyone that helped with the search!

Tammy said...

Lucky lovely little torti--for finding the right place that would take care of her and see her into a loving home. You are so right in your rant--how anyone could dump any animal is beyond me. And of course this is why I have way too many cats (inside and out) and pray every day that no more will just 'show up'. Oh, and if we only had Michelle's street address, we could make one show up for her.. ha ha.. Wait I think I DO have it! ;-)

Ken and Mary of Fancy Fibers Farm said...

Your rant is well justified. I'm so glad that beautiful little kitty found a home. Some days it breaks my heart to think of the cruelty we humans are capable of, but I gain some relief in knowing that there are humane, decent, caring folks such as you (and the many fine commenters here).

Copyright info

Creative Commons License
The content of Crosswinds Farm blog is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License.