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Healing My Heart

In August, I lost my best feline friend of fifteen years, Niffy. I was devastated – I had trouble sleeping and focusing, and couldn’t stop crying. My husband wanted to get me a kitten to help ease my loss, but I told him that it was too soon, and probably would be too soon for years.

Meanwhile, at the apartment building where I worked the overnight shift, there was a notice to the residents to stop feeding the stray cat that had been hanging around. I had not seen or even heard about this cat, but that night, when I was doing some rounds, I saw her – this little scared, skinny lynx-point Siamese. She ran when she saw me, but I still had some of Niffy’s food in my car and left it out for her. Although I didn’t see her again that first night, the food dish was empty in the morning.

The following few days, I kept bringing food for the little stray. I soon realized that though she was skittish when approached, if I sat still and let her come to me, she would turn to purring putty in my hands with the first stroke of her fur. The first time I held her, I could feel my heart starting to mend. Within a week, I brought her home.

I named her Sookie, the Americanized version of Suki, which means ‘beloved’ and ‘happy.’ Sookie has been such a blessing – reminding my husband’s two cats how to play like a kitten, stealing stuffed animals, following me around the apartment, causing lots of mischief as she adjusted from being a scavenger to being a spoiled housecat. I thought I would never recover from the loss of Niffy, but it was almost as though Niffy’s spirit came back, found this ragged little stray, told her there was a girl who needed a cat, and led her right to me. I’m so thankful that Sookie and I met just when we each needed the other one most!

Maria Shuffit
Springfield, MO


About 14 hours ago this little bottle baby was on its last leg. It was wet, covered in fleas, ice cold, anemic, motionless, and refusing to eat but now it has been bathed with dawn, blow dried to perfection, kissed to death, and fed until it's belly is stuffed. I'm pretty confident in saying it's a boy, this guy has come such a long way! I think Blizzard is gonna be just fine but I would gladly accept prayers for this little guy. We're hoping he can join his siblings in their foster home tomorrow if he remains healthy:)

Dothan, AL

Our little Boy

My wife and I were married only a few years when we discovered that having a child of our own was not to be. I think the need to fill that missing void put us on a search for a puppy and one Sunday we stopped at a local animal Humane Society where we found our little boy Onyx. He was a lab/beagle/tasmanian devil mix who was the last of his litter with brown eyes that we just couldn't resist. Only one week later he became deathly sick and we discovered he had Parvo. The vets couldn't make any promises and we were faced with the real possibility we could loose our guy of only 8 weeks. After a few days of constant worry and not knowing if he would make it we got word that he had escaped his cage, was wondering around their kennel and we could come and get him...he made it! That was oh so many years ago and since then we created so many wonderful memories together, just the three of us. He became a constant loving companion, seeing every park and open field in Western Pennsylvania. Running and playing eventually became walking and limping as age began to catch up with him, but he was never in pain and even near the end enjoyed a good wagon ride on the bike trail with us. This past April, 16 years after our sweet boy came into our lives and filled a void we both needed so much, he made his journey over the rainbow bridge. Our hearts are both still so broken and his memory is with us always. Thank you buddy for making us a family and I know one day we will all be together again, running and playing as in days gone by and I will again feel your sweet kisses on my cheek. Till then, know "mom and dad" loved you so very much and you will forever be "our little boy."

Pittsburgh, PA

Foster cat bully take over


8 years ago we were fortunate to find two loving siamese sisters through They have been the most cherished animals in our household. In September of this year we opted to foster a new cat through dire circumstances. We followed the introductory rules per Jackson's guidance to no avail. We also purchased the oils he recommends. The new foster (ours now, as the previous owner has made no contact since) cat has been overly aggressive to our sisters. The aggression has gotten to the point where our once dominant cat is now cowering and is hissing at her sister.

We have recently starting a separation technique to try and regain self-esteem in our once dominant cat. She is doing better separated from what we call the "bully". We know this is not the right strategy but are at our wits end. We will never give the new foster up, but want peace between them. We feel horrible about the situation. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you,


Brian espel
Flossmoor, IL

Leo rescued me

I met 'Aspen', a Great pyrenees; while doing some art work for a veterinarian I knew.

He had come in as a 1 year old pup, and had just been through a terrible predicament.

His then-owner was a traveling salesman, and would leave 'Aspen' locked up either in the bathroom or a large dog cage. Finally the dog snapped and tried breaking out of the cage. He succeeded, but as he broke through the door he caught his lower leg tendon on a piece of the sharp metal.

After the Vet sewed him back together, the owner paid the bill, but said he no longer could care for the dog.

I always wanted a large dog, and it had been years since I'd had a 4 legger that I would be able to take for rides in the car, or play with on the beach.

I adopted him, changed his name to Leonardo Da Vinci, and he has lived 10 loving years with me and my family. He has a fenced in one acre lot to run and play, plenty of hugs and kisses, and 2 kitties who also adopted him.

Leo's getting old now, and entering his twilight years. But he will always live in our hearts, even after he's gone. He's my best friend, and still tries to greet me at the gate or the door, even though it's getting harder on those old legs.

Fort Myers, FL

Not so feral Cali

We lost our first cat to cancer 4 years ago. That is when my feral calico kitty showed up. Over the years we fed, brushed, played and loved this sweet little girl, Cali, as she let us into her life. She had an insulated shelter under the screened-in porch in the winter and an open-air box with a sheepskin liner at other times. She would follow us around her yard and come when called. We worried about fox and other critters, but this feisty girl was almost always waiting at 5 am for breakfast and 5 pm for dinner, sitting on the porch and looking into the kitchen window.

My husband sat with her late at night when he went outside to pick up her bowls so the critters would not be enticed.

When we noticed Cali was not eating; my husband captured her and took her to the vet. After dental surgery and aggressive steroid treatment, she continued to lose weight. Her little FIV+ body could not fight any longer. I picked her up for the first time and held her close before we took her to the vet for the last visit. We love our three indoor cats; it's just heartbreaking to lose this special little calico girl. What a blessing to have loved her!

Springfield, VA

A Street Cat Named Brian.

I didn't adopt Brian; Brian adopted me.

I live in Thailand, a country famed for it's sunshine, beaches and laid back lifestyle. It is also one of the street animal capitals of the world. When we moved into our new house, within a few days we noticed a dirty, oil-stained cat living under a car on the street outside our house. It didn't take him long to notice us either, and soon he was coming into our front yard, demanding strokes and love that I simply couldn't give him in his current condition.

What followed was a trip to the vets to have him checked over. The vet put him at around 8 years old - pretty good going for a street animal. A few quick tests confirmed that my new friend had feline leukemia that was already quite progressive. He also had an infection in his face from mites in his ears. He was generally in a bad way, and of course being the soft-hearted girl that I am, when we went home that day he no longer stayed outside but was welcomed into my home. Knowing that I live in a country that doesn't allow animals to be put down, I vowed to take care of him until the end.

I decided to call him Brian; it suited him. He had the attitude of a grumpy old man (wouldn't you after 8 years living on the streets?) but he loved a snuggle. As time went on, Brian's leukemia progressed more and more. He began to lose weight and lost the sight in one eye. But he kept on giving those snuggles until the very end. Our time together may have been brief but I am happy to have made his final year a happy, comfortable love-filled one.

Kylie Millar
Phuket, Thailand

The Girls

Both my kitties are rescues, just not from Animal Control. The first, a black, green-eyed beauty named Harmony, picked me when I visited her foster home on other business. Then about 6 mos. old, she jumped into my lap and wouldn't leave. She'd been spayed but had also been declawed, way too young. She'd gotten an infection and her original family did not want to deal, so she ended up being fostered and nursed back to health where I found her. Turns out, she was missing all the extra attention she'd gotten while sick in her foster home with around 20 other cats. She went home with me.

After going through some hard times and finally settling in a mobile home for a couple of years, we'd become good friends. There was a huge colony of cats in the new neighborhood, and one new momma with several kittens. One day, I looked out and saw momma had been run over in the road. So sad. About a week later, one of her little grey long-haired kittens about 3 months old ran in my door one morning when I opened it to feed outside kitties. She made a beeline straight for the food and it was down in no time. In the end, she simply moved herself into my house. Her name is Padma, and she's the sweetest natured kitty I've ever known. She and Harmony got along OK for awhile, but after we had to move into a smaller space, Harmony has gotten crabby with Padma, who has pretty much learned to ignore Harmony's bad moods. They eat together fine and it's the only way to get them peacefully in the same picture. A friend took care of them recently while I was in hospital and sent this picture to show they were OK. I do love my kitty girls and they give lots of love in return. Harmony is now 6 and Padma 2.

Victoria, TX

My boy picked me

After having lost my beautiful 12 year old kitty Delilah I became so depressed that I stopped going out and kept to myself while trying to heal from her loss. She became very ill and developed hepatitis and was hospitalized several times in an attempt to make her well again but it was not to be. I was heartbroken. Eight months later I got a call from a friend saying she had gone to a shelter to adopt a dog but returned with a kitten instead when she was told all of its siblings had been adopted and it was scheduled to be put down because it appeared there was something wrong with it. She is more of a dog person and had me in mind when she brought him home. When I drove to her house and met my little Austin for the 1st time he chose me. I picked him up and he immediately rested his little head on my shoulder and nuzzled his snout in my neck letting me know that I belonged to him. He became my best friend and soul mate for the next 17 years until this past July when he got very sick and was hospitalized for 4 days and sent home with a bunch of medications. He was half the weight he once was and was not getting any better. For 17 years he had greeted me at the door upon my return from work and I knew something must of been terribly wrong when I came home one night and he didn't. I had to make the hardest decision of my life and knew I had to let him go. Well here it is 16 weeks later and there is a giant hole in my heart and I break down multiple times every day because I miss him so much and constantly wonder if I had given it a few more days would it have made a difference? I thank God every single day for sending me my beautiful boy and allowing me to be his caretaker for 17 years.

Woburn, MA

Soleil, the stone cat - 15 years inside a wall

This is Soleil. She is a senior cat who has been rescued a few days ago in the beautiful city of Tarragona, Spain.

She has been living inside an ancient roman wall for fifteen years.

Her story is heartbreaking: she was presumably abandoned. When she got pregnant, she hid herself in this wall to look for protection for her litter, but some bastards killed her kittens with firecrackers. She never was able to leave this little crack in the wall. She was fed by a group of ladies who feed the cats in the area, but they couldn't release her. Her little hole was full of heces and insects and even crystalls from bottles. Her feeders tried to clean her space with some tools, but it was almost impossible to maintain it clean.

When the volunteers of the organisation "El hogar provegan" (Provegan Home) heard about her terrible state, they decided to rescue her. Today, Soleil is adapting herself to the new situation, and ill be taken care of for the rest of her live. She is so loving and happy, it's so sad that she's been in this situation for so many years.

The rescuers want to share her story to avoid the normalization of this kind of situations. It has no point to blame the people who were taking care of her, they tried to do their best. The message is that if you see an animal needing for help, you should try help him.

I wanted to share this story, because Spain is known around the world for animal cruelty, like bullfight and other infamous traditions, but little by little, a new sensitivity for animals is arising in our society. This month we had the first two incarcerations in our story for animal cruelty performed by a brave judge, and activists are improving the laws around the country. Soleil's rescue is another little step in the correct way on our relation with animals.

You can find current information about Soleil and the moving video explaining her story in the facebook page of "El hogar provegan- ESP".

Kat Leesi
Tarragona, Spain
Purple Paw Everest Super Cozy Jacket
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