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Cat House on the Kings & the Fugitive Feline

Approximately 5 years ago, it was love at first sight between

Amanda Barker and an 8 week old kitten from The Cat House.

Amanda named her Ocean and over the next 5 years, Ocean

became her little princess, never venturing outside the castle.

Fast forward to November of 2009: Amanda and Ocean

moved back in with Amanda's dad & mother (aka Tammy Barker

the Crazy Cat Lady) and Tammy's cats. Coming home from

a weekend getaway they found a door had been left ajar and

woefully realized that several cats had made their escape.

They quickly rounded up all the renegades, but Ocean, who

had never been outside before, was nowhere to be found.

Amanda, Tammy and friends posted signs all over the

neighborhood, went door to door with flyers, put an ad in the

Fresno Bee, posted on Craigslist daily, and told anyone and

everyone who would listen about this fugitive feline with

absolutely no street smarts. Of course, The Cat House on

the Kings was also notified at that time.

Five fretful months went by, and there was no sign of Ocean.

The Festival de Los Gatos, a spring fundraiser at the Cat

House on the Kings was held on May 1st. Amanda and her

dad, supporters of Lynea's efforts, walked into the main house

and Amanda did a double take. There, regally perched on

a cat tree in the corner was Ocean. Amanda had never

gotten around to changing Ocean's microchip information so

she was returned to The Cat House, and had been living as

one of 700 cats waiting for a home (and almost got one a

few days before). It was one joyful reunion and Ocean came

home to resume her reign over the rest of the cats (with an

updated microchip, of course).

Tammy Barker
Fresno, CA

Tree Hugger

Everyday I read these stories and everyday I'm thankful that my husband and I adopted our two amazing cats. And I'm thankful that there are many people out there like us who would help a homeless animal. Last weekend we were walking home from an event downtown and as we passed the post office we heard a meow. I dropped everything and ran over to this giant pine tree and there was the tinyest kitten about 6 feet up! I held out my hands and she crawled right into them and snuggled into my neck and started to purr. At one point she struggled so I put her down and she dug a hole and did her business then looked up at me and meowed. Probably saying, "OK, I'm ready to go." We knew our cat Jolly would be jealous but kitten adjusted nicely. She even took the cat condo as her little bed. She stayed with us for 3 days making herself right at home and when I put her on craigslist we got a phone call right away from a lady who had rescued a kitten from her neighbor whom they saw unfit to take care of it. So, I knew she was going to a good home with a new kitten friend and a wonderful family to take care of her. I miss her terribly but I can't have all the amazing cats in the world, I have to share :) Please adopt but most of all spae and neuter your pets!

Amber K
Idaho Falls, ID


My friend Randy got this big handsome boy 10 years ago at the pound, probably already 5 years old. When my friend lost his apartment and his landlord dumped kitty at another pound, I heard about it and rescued this sweet-natured lynx point. Roscoe spent 9 great months with me and my other cats. Randy died on July 3rd, and Roscoe's liver failed suddenly a week later. My housecall vet put him to sleep a couple of days afterwards. RIP to both pals.

Bob Carlson
St. Louis, MO


Olive came to live with us almost a year ago, she was 5 months old. She joined her big brother Splash a purebred Canaan dog who was also rehomed at 6 months and is now 11 years old.

We had just lost a dog and were searching for a smaller breed. We went to a no kill shelter to visit a dog, but the connection just wasn't there. Headed to the kill shelter next door and there she was. I only spent 5 minutes with this darling pup and knew she was ours!

I call her my Jack-Rat-WaaWaa as we have no clue what she is, but she is the spitting image of her big brother Splash. They look like twins, one being 70 lbs, and Ms. Olive weighing about 15 lbs.

Her call name is Livvie as she got to LIVE. She had one day left before she was to be put down, unfortunately her littermates were. It still breaks my heart that we couldn't save them all.

Livvie is the light of our lives! Full of energy and faster than the speed of light. She's still somewhat fearful of things but is making progress every day. She's even completed obedience class.

Teresa Clement
Morristown, TN


On July 11th, Buckaroo and his siblings were left in an over night drop box at a local pound. They weren't 10 weeks old. Our local foster group found them and took them in, hoping they would find someone to give them a forever home.

On July 11th, we spent the day playing golf.

Stopping by our local pet store on July 17th to buy food for our crew (Yes, we have 13 canines living with us), we noticed this little guy. We had recently lost our little cocker saved from a puppy mill and had every intention of raising a plant in her unused food bowl. But, this little beating heart needed to find a place to call his own. We now have a new use for the bowl.

Think you don't have time, room, energy to raise a puppy? Come on! Get over yourself! It's not about you. It's about giving a little soul the opportunity to bring you laughter, love and a wagging tail.

Bath, OH

2 abandoned kittens

A couple of years ago, my husband and I owned a trucking business. Katie was our little truck dog. One night in a Pilot truck stop in GA, we were parked up against a curb, next to an open field. I was sitting up front, my husband and Katie were laying on the back bunk. The 3 of us were enjoying the cool weather, watching TV. As I sat there, I heard a cry. Thought is was a bird, but the cries persisted. I looked out and noticed a box, laying on the grass. I jumped out of the truck, and looked in the box. There were 2 tiny kittens, days old, eyes barely open. One of them was crying his little heart out, and the other had become too weak, and wasn't doing well at all.I scooped them up and showed my husband. We could not take care of them, had nothing for them, weren't familiar with the town we were in, no idea of where a Vet might be. We went into the truckstop store, where the lady at the counter told me that I couldnt have them in the store,, but that there were clean boxes outside. We found a clean box, and proceeded to the front of the store, where the "normal" customers purchased gas. We spent over an hour asking every patron at the pumps, or coming and going in and out of the store, if they lived in the neighborhood, could take the babies for the night, and bring them to a vet the next day. A lady came up to me and said "I live here. I will take them home, get them to a vet in the morning." To this day, I pray those 2 little kittens found their forever homes.

Carrollton, TX

Kato's Story

I was sprawled on the floor reading the Sunday paper one evening in June 2004 when my husband excitedly trotted to our front door and said, “I think I hear something outside.” I plugged my fingers in my ears satirically and said, “Don’t hear anything, la, la, la, la, la.” I had already taken two cats to the no-kill shelter that year because we owned two rescued cats. We lived beside a 20-acre farm field that served as the general drop off for unwanted pets. “Come look at this,” said my husband as he poked his head around the door. Outside on our porch I found a dirty, skinny, crying white kitten about eight weeks old. Of course I scooped him up and sent my husband for canned food and kitten milk. Kato has been with us ever since.

Pamela Palmer
Salt Lake City, UT

Chloe's Story

As a single, forty-something, career woman, I was feeling lonely more frequently. After driving home from a business trip in January 2000 to an empty condo, I vowed to do something about my situation. The next day I went to the Humane Society. The shelter was oddly quiet after a very successful holiday season of pet adoptions. There were only about six cats available. One was a sickly tortoise named Stormy about a year old huddled in the back of her cage—she would be going home with me. Next, I looked for a friend to take with her. Up top was a gray tuxedo named Chloe, also about a year old, dancing back and forth and putting her paws through the cage to summon me. They left with me that day and filled my home with ample love while we waited for my husband to come along two years later.

Pamela Palmer
Salt Lake City, UT

RJ and his journey to a real home!

I was driving on a winter day in Vegas and ironically it was snowing a few days that week so it was cold!! I came to an intersection...a very busy one, and a little beagle was running scared and was coming close to being hit. I opened my car door and he jumped right on my lap!!! After a long search, I found his family and they did not want him. They said they got him from the pound, only had him a year and they're to busy for a dog . His teeth were in bad shape so it seems he was homeless and a pound puppy for most of his life. I took him home to my yellow lab and they've been best friends ever since. He is such an angel, well behaved, loves to cuddle and is beyond spoiled! We love him dearly!

Christina Valentino
Las Vegas, NV

Brothers at Heart

My husband and I found Memphis (my big chocolate baby) at Recycled Paws rescue in Lexington, NC. He was the cutest puppy but had been returned twice due to stomach issues. I knew as soon as I laid eyes on him, he was going home with me that day. About a year later, my husband had an unexpected deployment, so Memphis and I moved to WV to stay at my parents' house. Memphis loved having other dogs to play with all the time! I knew that once we moved back to Virginia Beach that he would need someone to play with. That's when we found Knoxville. Knox was born in a shelter near DC and was scheduled to be put down at 4 months old. A lady there called the Norfolk SPCA because she knew they were a no kill shelter, so one of the workers drove up and got him. He spent a week in quarantine, but his first day out on the floor for visitors just so happened to be the day my husband and I were there. We were almost to the last row when this little black paw came poking out of the kennel. He was trying to sit still, but his tail was wagging so hard it was moving his entire body. My heart melted, but it was my husband that said, "He's going home with us. We found Memphis a brother." Today, Memphis and Knox are inseparable. They couldn't be more different, but they are definitely brothers at heart. Please adopt a shelter dog, they have SO much love to give!

Leigha Canterbury
Virginia Beach, VA
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