Friday, August 1, 2014

Hoppy Friday! - The Story of Sabrina

Sometimes, right in the middle of an ordinary life, love gives you a fairy tale. This is the story of my Sabrina. This is a long post, so get your coffee.

There's just something about animals. Since I was a little girl, I have loved being in the company of animals more often than the company of humans. Animals don't judge, hate, belittle, or have jealousy over you. They simply are, be and love. They understand, forgive and trust over and over again.


Sabrina came into my life a little over a year and a half ago. I was cat sitting for some neighbors down the street. Their two cats kept looking out the window, distracted by something. There, on the stone ledge of the patio, sat a cat. Of course, my heart melted. I grabbed some food and went out to meet her. She meowed, but was cautious not to come to close to me. I talked to her and she told me her name was Sabrina. ;)

When my neighbors returned, I said, "Y'all are going to kill me, but I've been feeding a cat outside and she said her name is Sabrina." To my surprise, they already knew her and had been giving her some food. They said they would keep feeding her and...call her Sabrina.

One day, while visiting my dear friend across the street, Michelle Miller aka, Captain, I noticed a cat rolling around in the other neighbor's yard. I thought it was odd. I looked to the house next door and noticed their boy with some type of gun. While I could not "prove, say for sure, without a shadow of a doubt, say he shot the gun," in my gut, I knew he must have shot at the cat. Little did I know at the time it was Sabrina and he had shot her eye, blinding her.

I'm not a parent, but if I were, I would teach my children to honor and love all of God's creatures, not torture them. Children who love animals grow up to be more caring, responsible and awesome adults. There are studies, tests and lots of literature to back me up. Just say'in.

I digress. So, a few weeks go by and I'm asked to cat sit for the neighbors again. This time, in addition to Sabrina's eye being full of blood, she is obviously pregnant. I tell my neighbors she is pregnant and they reply, "No, she's just fat because we have been feeding her." Several weeks later in October, David finds three little kittens under the chair of their side porch. Ummmm...she was pregant!

The neighbors tell me they love Sabrina and want to keep feeding her as their "outdoor" cat. They start feeding her and the kittens on their enclosed back porch. This is October and winter is coming. Captain gives the neighbors several items to give the kittens and Sabrina extra shelter and warmth to make it through one of the coldest winters we have had in years.

I tell the neighbors, "If you want to keep Sabrina, we need to get her spade and then get the kittens spade. It can become a major 'feral cat situation' if you let it go.  All you have to do is capture them all on your back porch. It should be easy as you've been letting them sleep and eat there already. Captain and I will pay for all their food, litter boxes and vet bills. All you have to do is house them." Captain can't have cats as her mom is allergic and I can't have cats as they eat bunnies. The neighbors agree and say they will capture them all in the porch.

Time goes by and they don't capture them on the porch. Instead they capture the kittens in a crate and tell me they are taking them to live on a farm. (I found out just three weeks ago that it was a lie. They took them to the forest and dumped them out. My heart broke.)

By this time, it's March and Sabrina is pregnant again. I tell the neighbors, she is pregnant again, but they don't seem to care. Then, Captain calls to tell me Sabrina is in her yard eating birds. That's odd I thought. She hasn't done that. Well little did I know, the neighbors decided to stop feeding her. They shut off their back porch so she had no shelter. Sabrina found a vacant house in our neighborhood and had six, yes six kittens there.

The neighbor called me one day this past April and said, "Shell, come down here I'm holding a kitten. Sabrina had brought the six kittens to the neighbors house as if to plead with them, "Please, feed us. You fed me all this time and now I have six babies." I held one of those precious babies and again said to the neighbor, "Do you want to keep Sabrina? Captain and I will help with everything. All you have to do is capture her and the babies on your back porch. We will feed them, take care of litter boxes and play with the babies so they can be adopted easily and not become feral cats. We can get Sabrina spayed when she is done nursing them." For a second time, the neighbors agreed. I kept calling the neighbors and asking if they had caught them. "Not yet," they replied. So I waited as it wasn't my house, yard or property.

In April, the neighbors told me they would be leaving the end of August and could I watch their cats and Sabrina while they were gone. Mind you, they leave for over a month each time and NEVER call to check on their house cats. David and Captain take care of my bunnies while I'm gone and give me an update twice a day because they know I can't handle not knowing how they are doing.  This time, I think the neighbors were trying to hide the fact that they had stopped feeding Sabrina again. If it weren't for Captain just happening to stop and talk to them, we would have never found out the truth.

The truth was that Sabrina was pregnant yet again. Her last litter was born in April. I also found out the neighbors stopped feeding her and the six kittens again, calling it "tough love." They said to me, "Oh they'll be fine running around the neighborhood." I wanted to scream! Sabrina and the six kittens were living under the abandon house. I said to them, "I'm going to make it my mission to catch Sabrina and take her to be spade while you are gone. Do you have a problem with that?" They said, "No."

I was on vacation with David and Captain took care of the bunnies and feeding the cats down the street. She also opened the porch back up and started to leave food for Sabrina and the kittens. She only saw Sabrina a few times and she didn't look good. Probably because she was pregnant and starving.

Upon my return from vacation, Captain and I captured Sabrina in the neighbor's porch only to have her escape through a hole in the screen. It was five days until I saw her again. I was on my morning walk and stopped at the neighbors to check if the food was gone. I heard a huge commotion with birds in the back yard, it was Sabrina. I said, "God, please help me." Sabrina followed me into the porch. I barricaded the hole in the screen and ran like a crazy woman to my house to get the bunnies "to go box". I threw a pack of tuna in it and Sabrina was so hungry she went in. I slammed the door and brought her to my house. I thanked God a million times on my walk home.



I went to Pet Smart and spent $150 on cat gear. This was this past Thursday and my plan was to keep her on my porch until Monday morning when I would take her to get spade at a mobile vet clinic. I felt sick about the babies in her belly as I don't believe in killing things, but Captain and I still had six other kittens in an abandoned house we needed to tend to.

 A good friend came to see Sabrina on Friday night and he agreed to adopt her and give her a wonderful "inside" forever home. I was so grateful. I believe Sabrina must have been someone's pet who was turned out. She is precious, loves to be pet, purrs like crazy, never scratches, bites and uses a litter box like a house kitty, not a wild kitty. She is amazing.



Sabrina was fine for a few days on my porch, but Sunday morning she kept meowing and meowing and it sounded different. I thought she was just upset from being in the crate for days. She started to rub a spot off her nose trying to get out of the crate. It was breaking my heart and I couldn't take it anymore. David had to work the weekend and I called him at work to say, "I need to bring her in our bathroom. I have to take her tomorrow, so it will be ok and then it will only be a week for her to recover from surgery and go to her forever home." While he wasn't very happy about it, he agreed. 

Captain came over and helped me transform my master bath into a "cat condo." I felt okay having her in here as my bunnies are upstairs and she would have to get through three sets of solid doors to get to them. (I still have issues with animals getting my bunnies. I was 12 when my pet rabbit was torn to shreds in my bedroom by our dogs.)

I went to check on Sabrina only to find her sound asleep in David's sink. Captain and I laughed and laughed. Little did we know she was in labor.

I went in to check on her before I left to pick David up from work. I found her in the doggie bed Captain had given me from her mom. There she was licking a kitten. Oh no....... When we got home there were four kittens. So much for one week with one cat. It just turned into eight weeks with five cats.

This is the "Cuddle Puddle." That's what I call them. They eat and then they all fall asleep in this puddle of cuteness. Be still my heart. All of God's creatures are precious. Life is precious and everything is connected. God knows I can't kill anything and that's why I was able to catch Sabrina and she felt loved and safe enough to have her babies in my bathroom. Little did I know my grand "plan" for the neighbors catching her on the porch and letting her finish feeding her babies and getting her spade afterwards was really going to end up happening in my bathroom.


Captain is working with volunteers to humanely capture, spay and foster the other six kittens who are still under the abandon house. It is our mission to take care of these babies since we couldn't save Sabrina's first three.


My goal is to find forever "inside" homes for these four. I hold them every day and tell them they are loved. I want them to have homes where they are spoiled, loved and doted on. I want them to have parents that are as crazy about them as I am about the bunnies. I won't give them to just anyone. They deserve the best and I know in my heart the best people will find their way to me and them.


If Sabrina were a vegetarian, I would keep her. I love her soooooooo very much. However, I am truly and incredibly grateful that she is going to a beautiful home. A home in which she truly deserves after everything she has been through. Maybe though...I could teach a kitten to be sweet to bunnies. Children are born into this world as innocent beings. Until they are taught to hate, there is only love and kindness towards all things.

So in the end, sometimes...it takes a Crazy Bunny Lady and a Retired Navy Captain to take a stand and do the right thing.



"We can't help everyone, but everyone can help someone." - Ronald Reagan

Life doesn't always work out in the "perfect plan" we have for things, but somehow, someway, it always works out. Besides, the best fairy tales always have a happy ending. ;)

Light, love and hugs to you,

Michelle, the Bunnies, Captain, Sabrina and the Cuddle Puddle

52 comments:

Vroomans' Quilts said...

You are so sweet - an Angel my dear. I do hope that the greater plan works and everything does have a happy ending.

Loris said...

I'm so grateful to you for being so persistent! Sabrina and her kittens are beautiful and deserve the most loving homes that I know you will find for them. God bless you for taking such loving care of these sweet, sweet creatures. My heart goes out to them. Purrs and tail wags from the group here 😊

Kristy said...

Wow, what a story! You are a very special person Michelle. I am thankful that you have taken in these kitties. You are a blessing to them and to us in sharing your heart. Thanks- K-

Baa. xxx said...

Those kittens are so beautiful - we are sure you and Captain will find good homes for them and the other stray kittens. Sabrina is sure to love her new home too.

Shadowydreamer said...

That is so very wonderfuls that you rescued her from the outdoor life. If only the others had just been honest from the get go!

Cats and rabbits actually do make good friends.

Jules Woolford said...

So that is the whole story. You and Captain are true animal angels. You've saved so many lives. Hoping for many happy homes and endings for all.xxx

Erica said...

A heartfelt thank God for you and captain!!

Raewyn said...

This is such a beautiful story :-) although the actions of others is sometimes very concerning.

Lesley said...

What a story! Thank goodness you became involved and worked so hard for Sabrina and family.

Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

I love you. Plain and simple.

I could go on and on about my childhood and how the only friends I had were animals.....but I think you and I are on the same wavelength.

I have tears in my eyes, so I best stop typing, but just know, you and the Captain are awesome. Thank you.

StitchinByTheLake said...

Cruelty to animals is beyond my comprehension. Neglect is just another form of cruelty in my mind. Thank you for being such a loving person. blessings, marlene

Anita in Florida said...

Thank you for all your love and kindness towards animals. God bless you!

Sheila said...

What a touching story and I am so happy Sabrina will have a forever home , she deserves that as does her precious kittens . You are and angel :-)

carla said...

Hi!!! Wow!!! Such a wonderful story and I do love happy endings!!!! I hope they all find loving homes!!! They are so cute!!! You are very sweet!!! Thank You

DIGBY said...

Michelle, you never cease to amaze you. You have such an amazing soul, you must have been touched by the Goddesses. And how lucky you are to have such a wonderful friend in the Captain to help you when you are in need. Sabrina and her kittens were blessed when they met you. I will keep you and them in my prayers to find a wonderful forever home.

May the Faeries ALWAYS Shine Upon You!

Cynthia

Kathinca said...

Thank you for loving Sabrina and her kittens and taking them in.

You'll have no problem finding the kittens a forever home. I would have taken Sabrina within a heartbeat but unfortunately i am in the Netherlands. I have with cats what you have with bunnies. All the cats i've had were "rejects" or had something wrong with them and i love(d) them to pieces.

Sue said...

Lovely post Michelle, poor Sabrina, looks like she found a friend with you! Good luck with finding the kitty's homes!

speedyrabbit said...

You are the most amazing person Shell,and yes a kitten can befriend Bunnies its so very easy with kittens,I was able to do it with my first bunny and I had two adult cats and a springer spaniel how loved to chase wild rabbits and all I did was put them together,the do thought it was some kitten the cats well they just ignored him but every night they would all stretch out in front of the fire a dog ,a bunny and two cats it was adorable.thats all you do put the kitten in with the bunnys and watch to make sure everything is ok and when the kitten gets older you will find it has many bunny character traits like its half bunny and half cat,so if you want to keep one of the kittens it will be fine,xx Rachel

Mosaic Magpie said...

What a story and how lucky Sabrina is to have you in her life. I can't imagine how some people can be so thoughtless to pets. You think at one time she had a home as she uses the litter box....wonder what happened with those people.
One of our dogs was found abandoned on the side of the road...we called numerous vet offices, put ads in the papers looking for his owner. No one ever bothered to look for him so we had him neutered, his shots and here he is one of my fur babies now.
Pets bring us joy and unconditional love...that is quite a bit for such small bundles of fur!
xo,
Deb

Karen M said...

Shell, your neihbors are idiots (but you know that already). Good thing that you and Captain are awesome!

Just Ramblin' said...

What a sweet story. This cat, Sabrina, and her babies are lucky to have you and the Captain in their lives. My son and his wife in NZ take in cats and prepare them to be adopted in to loving homes. I admire you and others who give so unselfishly to help these sweet little animals. I am a cat lover and so this story really touched me. May you be blessed for your kindness. Nola

QUILTING IS BLISSFUL, DI said...

I bet that for the first time in miss Sabrina's life she is truly happy and content--
and bless you for all you have done for this cat and her babies==you and Captain and David--
hugs, di and miss gracie

Jeanette said...

Aww Shell. Sitting here with tears running down my face. Bless you, Captain & David for taking care of Sabrina & her kitties. As you know i love cats & i hate to read of them or any animal being mistreated. Wish i could give one of them a home.Please give Sabrina & the Cuddle Puddle a big hug from me. Hugs,xx

Julie Huston said...

Hi, you are invited to share this with Feline Art Friday:
http://kittypartay.blogspot.com/2014/07/feline-art-friday-7.html

Donna Nowicki French said...

I am in tears also, thinking about the poor babies they abandoned in the forest. I really cannot stand people like that. I wish everyone was like you. It just tears my heart out.

Fiona said...

we need more people like you and the Captain in our world...
Hugz

Jenny of Elefantz said...

Praise God for you and Captain, Shell...I'm praying for Sabrina and her sweet babies. xxx

Tina said...

I honestly can't believe what total jerks your neighbors are! I think there is a special place in Hell for people that dump animals - they could have been taken to an animal shelter or the Humane Society. Shame, shame, shame on them!!!!!
Giant hugs to you and Captain for finding Sabrina a forever home (and giant hugs to the person that is going to keep her as an indoor buddy!) I pray her life is nothing but the best from now on!!! Poor baby has really had a hard life thus far.
I'm so thankful that you guys are also going to take care of Sabrina's other six kittens! Hopefully they will also find forever homes and become healthy, happy kittens that bring joy to someone's life and home!! Bless both of you!!!
As to these four tiny babies, I am so very glad that you are going to make sure that they only go to special folks. My two nieces adopted a baby kitten (his name is Blueberry) about three years ago and he was raised around their indoor bunny and has never been an outdoor cat. The two are now fast friends and even sleep and play together! It's just wonderful watching them and we've thought many times that Blueberry thinks he's a bunny ;O)
Anyway, Blessings to you and Captain!!! There needs to be more people in this world that truly love and appreciate animals and don't just stand by when there is a wrong that can be fixed. After all, we are "supposed" to be the humans and the animals don't have a voice - so it's up to us to "hear" them and to "speak" on their behalf and be their advocates if need be. Sabrina and her kittens were truly blessed to find you and Captain to be their advocate and their voice!!

kc said...

God loves you both, and so do I! What a tragic story, with a happy ending, and such beautiful souls throughout.

My pup Jake and my kitten Fleasy were the very best of friends all their lives, so it could happen...maybe..
God bless!

Angelia Lanouette said...

Michelle, you are a very special person! Thank you and Captain for taking care of Sabrina and her babies. I hope the six babies under the house are rescued very soon. It breaks my heart and makes me very angry when I hear stories of how cruel some people can be towards animals. It also drives me crazy when people say that animals don't have feelings....they do! We have two precious kitties that we rescued 10 years ago and we love them dearly. They are important members of our family. Please keep us informed and give Sabrina and her babies extra hugs for us!

Kaisievic said...

Such a great story, Michelle. So glad that it has had a happy ending.

sewyouquilt2 said...

Sabrina is so lucky to have you fret and worry over her. it is sad that some people don't treat animals like living beings. our Dunkin was literally dumped into a dumpster in a trash bag with his littermates. I wish we knew by whom. we took him in. he was only 7 wks old and is such a little lovebug. he thinks I am his mom and that's ok. we love him to pieces. our shelter cat Phoebe looks like Sabrina. good luck finding homes for the little sweeties. and God brought you together for a reason

Pat said...

Love the story of Sabrina. My daughter out-law (divorced from my son, that's why the out-law instead of in-law) recently rescued Mama cat and her 6 babies during a tornado warning about a month ago. She pulled the babies out of a window well as it was pouring outside and they were really screaming. Mother would not come in that night but the next morning she came for her children and was tame enough that they let her in the laundry room and that was the end of her being an outside cat. All babies have been adopted and Mama is staying with my daughter out-law. Ain't love for animals grand?

tink's mom said...

You said get a cup of coffee but forgot to mention the need for the box of tissues. You and the Captain are wonderful. The Cuddle Puddle couldn't have ended up in a nicer bathroom for this life changing event. With the two of you super positive people in charge things will work out wonderfully, I just know it in my heart.

Judy1522 said...

It is so hard to understand that sort of ambivalance towards an animal. I am so glad there are people like you that care enough to help. The kitties are so adorable how could anyone not love them. I probably would not have been so nice as you were to the neighbors once they stopped feeding Sabrina I would have just taken her. Once they abandoned her I think they gave up all rights to her. They appear to be people that should not have animals. Also, the child who shot Sabrina in the eye should have his gun taken away but since you can't prove that it will never happen. I just cringe when I think of the things some kids do because their parents do not take the time to teach them properly. Fortunately things have turned out well for Sabrina.

~Laurie~ said...

Bless you sweet angel for taking care of these precious babies.

GIJane279 said...

Oh my goodness if I lived closer Sabrinas babies would have a home. Please keep us posted on Sabrina and her babies love and hugs from my two kitties and dog, to you the bunnies the captain Sabrina and her babies!

Annette F Tait said...

adorable and admirable Shell, and Captain! well done! if you were this side of the pond then I most probably would have given one a forever home. Burns my first house rabbit grew up side by side with my puppy Max, an Aussie working dog - kelpie/heeler cross. He cowtowed to her all the time :) and treated her so gently and lovingly, it was beautiful to see. much love, I know they will get great loving homes and so will the 6 other babies xxx thank you both

Kim Q said...

Our Mr. Wabbit passed away some months ago, but he happily co-existed with a house full of cats! He thought they were funny looking bunnies...the cats just looked down their noses at him, but they never hurt him.

Some animal welfare groups in our area run TNR programs...trap,neuter,release...for feral cats. That helps control over-population. What aggravates me are people who do not neuter their pets. Many of the "feral" cats in my neighborhood aren't feral at all!

Wendy said...

Your neighbours really are disgusting creatures. I'm not a fan of cats buti would never hurt one. I'm disgusted they let their son have a gun too... good luck with the rehoming, I know cats can coexist peacefully with buns, but I certainly wouldn't try it with my babies!

Christine M said...

Thank goodness Sabrina has you and the Captain looking after her welfare. Good luck with everything, Shell. Hugs, Christine xx

Sharon McClurg said...

Well - your story made me cry this morning (for many reasons), but I thank you (and Captain and your husband) so much for rescuing Sabrina and her kittens... Some people do not deserve to have animals in their lives. And many animals ARE better companions than people. Thinking special thoughts for you and all the critters you rescue Michelle... Sharon in Iowa

Heather said...

I read your post with such tears in my eyes. I will never understand cruelty in this world but continue to be uplifted by people like yourself and Captain for being such kind and loving spirits. I know you will find loving homes for all these animals!

Lana said...

This really does hurt my feelings.
I am so proud of you both.

Melody said...

You are both such wonderful kind people. I am so glad you have been there for this poor little cat and her kittens.

Missie of Traditional Primitives (formerly Hallbrook Designs) said...

Aww, so glad you were there to help out Miss Sabrina. You have such a kind heart! Love your flower blocks too! So cute!

Gai Butler said...

Oh Michelle, I'm just catching up on all the drama. Sabrina and her babies are so very fortunate to have you an Captain take control of their destiny, taking them from a dim reality to a brightly shining future. If only those 'neighbours' had been caring enough to admit they didn't want any responsibility for Sabrina all that time ago, you and Captain would have been able to change her life for the better much sooner. Thank you both for stepping in to ensure these kitties have a future filled with kindness and love.

KaHolly said...

You're awesome!

Mdm Samm said...

oh Shelllllll I can hardly believe this all...so sad and yet you have to believe you were meant to be on her path...the fact that your neighbors....wellll I don't have much to say about them....WE don't see abandon cats here so I don't know what I would do if found in a similar situation...I likely would have a cat hotel...lol you both are a great team....hope they all find homes and responsible owners get them all spayed and neutered...my heart is sooo heavy

suz said...

God bless you and Captain! I have a cat that came from a mom who was never fixed...just had litter after litter - GT is a wonderful old lady now (just like me!) and although she's an indoor cat, we had her fixed as soon as we brought her home. Good for you and Captain for taking care of this sweet little family.

Brandy Pettit said...

Oh my goodness, I can't stop crying right now! It hurts to know people will treat animals the way your neighbors did (and karma will pay them back...) but I am so happy you and the Captain stepped in to Sabrina's life! I wish we could offer to take in one of the kittens too, unfortunately I live in Washington State, just about as far away as can be. The kitties remind me of our cat that we had to put down a couple months ago too. Thank you for sharing an inspiring story of love!
~Brandy
pamperedpettit.blogspot.com

Mary said...

Michelle,
God Bless You. What a kind,loving and truly Amazing Woman you are.
If you looked into my heart, you would see the same story, plus several more:) I have a wild
bunny (Cucumber) and a baby hummingbird (Rain Drop) indoors in my sunroom :)
You and your Sweet Friends are Awesome ....
Hugs,Mary Beth oxoxox