Ark Animal Sanctuary Week of July 19, 2023

Lorraine Monfils, Special to The County
10 months ago

A little over a week ago we took in an injured female cat. A very kind girl had been trying to catch her because she knew she was injured. 

When the cat arrived at the sanctuary, she was very nervous and had a bad wound on her face. It looked like something had attacked her. Her eye was deformed and badly infected. Upon examining her, we found that she had milk, which meant she had babies somewhere. We were torn as to what to do. The mom was feral and in desperate need of vet care. We knew if we released her we would never catch her again. We also knew that if something attacked her, there was a possibility she was defending her kittens and that they may not even be alive at that point.

The difficult decision was made to get the mom to the vet and get her treated. She was right there in front of us and she was in pain.

We named this beautiful soul Annika and transported her to the vet, where she spent the night.

We then put out a plea to the people in the area that Annika had been caught and that she still had kittens somewhere out there, and asked people to keep an eye out for the kittens. 

Our volunteers hit the pavement to help in the search. We had no idea how many kittens she had or how old they were. With every passing day the chances of us finding the kittens and finding them alive slowly diminished.

Annika’s wound was looking so much better, but there was a possibility that she would lose her eye. Her appetite was good and she was thriving in our care, but we knew something was missing.

One week to the day Annika was brought to us, we received a message that there were kittens in someone’s garage. That garage was almost directly across the street from where Annika was captured. The kittens were about 4 to 5 weeks old and were being fed by the kind family whose garage they were in. 

We headed out to catch the kittens — a job easier said than done. They were so tiny and ran fast. They were not socialized, making the task even more difficult. We set small live traps used to catch squirrels. We caught the first one that night. The other kittens didn’t weigh enough to set off the traps, so on day three we placed a rock on the trigger to make it heavier and it worked like a charm. The last 3 kittens were caught that day.

All of the kittens have been reunited with their mom and Annika is very happy to have them back.

This story is a reminder of what can happen when a community pulls together to help an animal. Annika was very lucky to have a guardian angel who got her the help that she needed. The kittens had an entire community looking for them, and a very special family let us invade their privacy and their home to reunite four tiny kittens with their mom.

These are the stories that touch our hearts and remind us of why we do what we do.

Thank you for your continued support and, as always, thank you for reading our column.