Funds raised for Oct 2014 as at 11 Oct 2014

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Still appealing for Vet Fund donations - to cover Naughty's colonectomy surgery among other vet expenses

Naughty is a stray from Admiralty who came here to rehabilitate from a megacolon - which causes chronic constipation due to an enlarged colon. Care included daily medications: cisapride, Lactulose, and daily enemas, subcutaneous injections of fluids. Being consistently constipated, straining often and unable to poop and if he did, very hard compacted - painful - faeces, he was always in a bad mood and he was so feral only Elaine and Andy could administer the enemas and subcut injections.

Clinical care like the above was only meant to be a short term solution and the ideal was for him to get a colonectomy so that he would no longer get poop stuck in his system anymore. Now he is recovering from his surgery and has become a total manjapot cat.

Before surgery, patting him was not so easy
But his surgery, which is quite a complicated procedure, set us back in our Veterinary Fund by quite a bit. His surgery cost us $777.80 and this was when we were already in the red.

Naughty's vet bill, incurred among other expenses
We are hoping to at least raise enough to cover the deficit caused by Naughty's treatment, which has really changed his life so much. He is such a happy cat now, and no longer has to strain to poop and be in pain from using the litter box.

To give: 
Make a deposit to our DBS current account 027-905975-3 and SMS Elaine 90880675 to indicate you have given to the Vet Fund.

We will report how much of Naughty's bill has been raised after this appeal is publicised, on social media. Please help us spread the word. Thank you for helping Naughty be a happier, more comfortable and pain-free cat now. 





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Sunday, October 5, 2014

[Adopt] Nikki from a roadside bush in Bishan

| Nikki, tricoloured female kitten |
Nikki was found as a lone kitten near a road, hiding in a bush and mewing away. Her rescuers managed to extract her out of the bush when the located the meowing sounds, and thereafter tried to find out if her mother was nearby. They went to various cats around the estate but could not find Nikki's mother.

Nikki when first found in the bush
The same bush in the daytime
Thankfully she didn't run out onto the road
It is assumed she is an abandoned kitten, as usually kittens born on the streets like such areas near the road, by Nikki's age would be exploring their territory even if it means going on to the road with the traffic.

Their rescuers couldn't keep her nor foster her for long. Nikki came to Love Kuching on 5 Oct at 5 weeks old. She was mostly healthy, and only needed to be dewormed. We got her eating solid food and using the litterbox, and most importantly, socialised her to human affection and interaction with other cats.

At first, she was not very keen on other cats. She also doesn't like hugs very much, still. But she loves playing with her pen-mate, Denny.

Nikki climbing over Denny
She loves play-wrestling with Denny, cuddling him to sleep and leading him into mischief.

She is also very hyperactive and loves to go exploring on her own.

"Shucks, missed the flying feathers!"
Cannot sit still
Pounce?
She will do best in a home where a cat not too much older than she is (like Denny!) is an older sibling. With cats that differ in age in months or years, she tends to want to dominate them, and also does not interact well with them, preferring to lead in play than to follow. If you can adopt Nikki together with Denny, you will have priority over other adopters.

She is currently about 12 weeks old. 

How to adopt Nikki: click here, or see right sidebar under 'How to adopt'




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[Adopt] Denny, who fell from a roof at Macpherson

| Shy, a lil' scaredy Denny |
Denny was rescued by Denise, whose mother lives in a house in Macpherson. A stray cat had gone up to the roof of the house and given birth, and one night Denny fell from the roof.

He was so scared at first, he was feral, but now he is merely a reserved, introverted boy who loves cuddles and needs his good friend Nikki to feel comfortable and less scared.

"I'm shy, okay?"
With his pen-mate and BFF, Nikki
Not long after Denny arrived, he fell ill with calicivirus, which is a sort of cat flu' that results in ulcerations in the mouth and on the tongue. He was on antibiotics for 10 days. He had suspected mange, but it has long cleared up because we applied Revolution on all the cats, now his ear flaps are just a bit dry and on track to healing fully.

It also took a long time to socialise Denny. From a feral kitten, to one who is able to enjoy human attention. Every day the Foster Care Volunteers were around, he received lots of hugs, from the play/clean volunteers too, so that he would get used to it. He actually - loves - hugs! He is just very introverted.

Pensive Denny
He however still takes the cue in play from his BFF Nikki, who is the play initiator.

Nikki: "I be the one who teach Denny PLAY."
Hence we would like Denny to be adopted together with Nikki so he won't go through the trauma of having to leave a new best friend after losing his biological siblings from the roof fall.

Denny is litter trained, now about 14 weeks old and vaccinated, as is Nikki.

To adopt Denny and Nikki, see right sidebar under 'How to adopt' or click here.



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Skin Problems and Wounds - A Common Problem

4 years ago we wrote a basic post on skin problems in cats and how to go about localising the cause and how to treat it. It is now 2014 and our knowledge base has grown, so here is time for an update on skin problems, including wounds, which we now encounter a far lot more because of our work with injured stray cats.

Let's look at wounds first, most easy to recognise, and how they are usually treated both by vets and what you can do at home or in a fostering situation.

This is a common sight especially in stray cats, when they get into fights, be it with new stray cats entering their area because that is what sterilised cats do, or as unsterilised cats, fighting for mating territory.

Bite wound that is infected
Very often, when untreated, the bite wound gets infected grows into an abscess, that is like pus-filled wound, that often bursts and creates a large hole in the skin requiring surgery.

What can you do when you a see a stray cat that has a bite wound? If you know the bite wound is recent, before it gets infected, start cleansing the wound if the cat allows you to. Remember to always handle a cat by the scruff when administering medical care of any kind. Simple ways to disinfect the wound would be to clean it with saline, diluted chlorhexadine, or hydrogen peroxide, available from any human pharmacy. If you clean it constantly it will help prevent an infection and the wound should heal on its own without getting inflamed.

However, if a wound is inflamed, it will look angry, red instead of pink, and possibly oozing pus or swollen, or if an abscess has already burst, it will be an open hole in the skin. This requires antibiotics and, if after a course of antibiotics, usually for 2 weeks, a wound that doesn't close will require surgery thereafter. In such a scenario, you should take it to a vet. If you do not have funds for a vet's charges, look up our Emergency Response Fund for help.

It will be good if you can foster the cat in the meantime to give it its pre-surgery antibiotics, and thereafter allow it to heal until the stitches can be removed, as it is a very short time. Otherwise, you can either either medicate it while it is on the streets if you see the cat every day, or you can turn to our Foster Network for help, or ask people you know to be a foster caregiver to work in tandem. In terms of veterinary care, the antibiotics given will usually be Clavulox which is a twice a day oral antibiotics, wound cleaning topically with saline or peroxide or chlorhexadine and a topical cream such as Duoderm, Combiderm, Bactroban or an antibiotic cream such as one containing gentamicin. After the surgery there is usually no need to clean the wound, and only oral medication such as painkillers will be necessary as vets usually give a long-acting antibiotics jab (you can double-check with the vet).

Supplements and holistic remedies you can do to help a cat's wound recover more quickly are plentiful. In term of oral supplements which you can purchase from iherb.com (use our discount code AVA985 to get a first-time purchase discount of USD5-10 off). We buy human supplements and half the dose for cats. If the cat does not like the taste we try a quarter dose. Some cats really do reject the supplements, which will not be that detrimental but will slow the healing process in our experience.

Here are the list of supplements you can give for cats recovering from wounds.

Vitamin B

Curcumin (also comes in smaller bottle)

Licorice

Colloidal Silver

If the cat is in pain, you can administer a homeopathic pain remedy:

Heel BHI tablets
(Side note about Heel BHI tablets: be it for inflammation pain, muscle pain or injury, we find that all the Heel BHI pain relief tablets have the same effect for pain relief).

If the cat's pain is very obvious, you can turn to diffusing essential oils for pain relief. The 3 oils that are useful for animal pain relief are myrrh, copaiba and helichrysum. Myrrh is available from iherb.com, but copaiba and helichrysum are only available at Young Living (see here on how to purchase from Young Living). This combination of myrrh, copaiba and helichrysum is useful for any pain relief situation for any cat illness or injury.

In terms of any other skin abnormalities that are not wounds, be it fur loss or patchy skin or skin that looks like the cat has been scratching, the very first step you should do is to apply Revolution to the cat. This is because problems like fur mites (mange) and flea dermatitis are usually the most common in all skin problems. By applying Revolution to the cat, you already eliminate two possible sources that the skin problem may stem from.

If after 3 weeks, which is about the time a cat takes to regenerate new fur, there is no regrowth, then you can consider eliminating other possible problems to finally isolate what is the skin issue. In the meantime, if your cat tends to scratch or lick the area, you can do a few things. One, use apple cider vinegar to dab on the affected skin - you can dilute at a ratio of 50-50. Not only is apple cider vinegar antibacterial, it is also sour to taste and thus discourages cats to lick the area. Secondly, you can get your cat to wear an e-collar. Most cats will hate the idea, so try the apple cider vinegar first.

Look at the spots where your cat's fur loss or inflamed skin is. Is it at the hindlegs, anal region, tail area? Your cat may be allergic to the cat litter you are using. Is it around the mouth area? Your cat may be allergic to the food or the food bowls have bacterial accumulation (especially if plastic). Is it on non-specific areas of the body, and timely with air pollution such as haze? It could be an airborne allergen. Is it at its paws, where it contacts the ground when it sits or lies down? It could be allergic to a floor or upholstery cleaner.

For allergies, switching to natural products in the home will help. Use pine or paper litter. Avoid chemical air fresheners and household cleaners such as enzyme cleaners (we like the Biokleen range from iherb.com, affordable), or use Young Living Thieves collection which includes household cleaners and surface disinfectants that contain no chemicals. Diffusing Thieves essential oil blend also helps with allergies. Read here on how to sign up and buy Thieves products.

Affordable oil diffuser from iherb


If you have exhaustively ruled out allergens, take your cat to the vet to get a skin scrape test to eliminate bacterial and fungus infections. This way, your cat will get the right medication for the right problem. By already applying Revolution, eliminating allergens, you already isolate the causes and will be able to work with your vet better to make sure your cat is on the road to having a nice full coat again. Apart from medication, ask your vet which shampoos and conditioners will be useful for the diagnosed skin condition. Some bacterial conditions will benefit from salicylic acid ingredient in shampoos, for example.

The supplements indicated for wounds above, are also useful for inflamed skin. You can also consider:

Fish oil, also available in smaller dose
Coconut oil (use topically)






For coconut oil, it is supposed to regenerate hair growth, and if licked by your cat, it is also beneficial as it is a medium chain fatty acid.

Clinical research has also shown that a B vitamin, biotin, has been useful for dogs with skin problems.

Biotin

If your cat's skin condition is stress-induced, a lot of work over a long period of time will be needed to finally bring your cat back to a healthy immune system that will not be in overdrive due to stress. This often means the build up of the immune system through supplements such as vitamin B, colostrum, and probiotics at the very minimum.

Tl;dr version of this post: use Revolution on your cat at the first sign of any skin problem, and get your cat to the vet for a skin scrape test to get the problem diagnosed.

Hope this article has been useful. Do share it with anyone you come across who has complaints about skin problems seen on their cats or on stray cats.



Donate to our cause by making a deposit to our Love Kuching Project DBS Current Account 027-905975-3 or via Credit Card   
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Thursday, October 2, 2014

Our first #FosNet success!

In August, we launched our Foster Network, and made an open call for folks like you to join us as volunteer foster caregivers. We asked for people to join us to be on standby to take in sick or injured stray cats, so we could move beyond the 5 cat suites we have dedicated for such cases. This also means we can boost the take-up rate on our Emergency Response Fund, which can only be activated if there is a foster caregiver on standby to receive the cat after it goes to the vet.

Sick and injured stray cats have varying needs in their care of course, some are more complicated requiring difficult medical care such as injections, some require simple care that is merely oral medication or topical medication. We only match difficult cases to volunteer foster caregivers with the experience and availability to handle them, and easy ones to those with limited experience or time.

Lee Ying, our first foster caregiver, having had no experience with cats at all, took on Gerry for whom we have been appealing for help in fostering because she is a very simple case to handle. By getting Gerry to a foster caregiver, her slot in our foster space can be freed up for more serious cases that require specialty critical and intensive care. This also lowers the load the volunteers have to medicate at the foster home. Lee Ying really made a difference when she stepped forward.

Lee Ying with Gerry


Gerry has been doing well in her new foster home! Not only is she receiving more attention because of the human:cat ratio, her current foster home has more cat amenities and space for her to roam instead of being in a cage most of the time!

Gerry's corner in her new room


Gerry in box with cushion from her LKP cat suite

Scratching post Lee Ying got for her
We passed Lee Ying medication, food and litter, which is what foster caregivers in our Foster Network will receive. For Gerry we administered a steroid jab before she went to Lee Ying's home, and also oral steroids for when the jab wears off. She also needs topical cleaning of the wound with saline, and Duoderm gel to help her wound heal. Our FosNet Volunteer, Ami, gets updates from Lee Ying about how Gerry is doing so we can help if she needs any more supplies, or if any problems arise so we can check with our vet.

Want to join our Foster Network? What difference will you make?
  • Be on standby for cases that come in when we have no space.
  • Help foster easier cases so we can save space for those who require more intensive care. This way we can save more cats together.
  • Give more one-on-one attention to foster cats that they can never receive with the human:cat ratio we have at our foster home
What will you be given to help you become a foster caregiver?
  • Food and litter
  • Litter box and bowls if you do not have any
  • Cage, if you do not have a spare room
  • Medications and pharmaceutical supplies
  • Supplements that the cat needs
  • Briefing and demonstration on how to care for the cat medically before you start
  • Support from us via our FosNet Volunteer, Ami, for any questions you may have
Want to ask more questions about our Foster Network? Ami is reachable at ami@lovekuchingproject.org. Tell all your friends, especially those who either want to have some prior short term experience before adopting a cat for life, or those who have already had cats for life and wish to help our strays on a short term commitment. Those with experience fostering kittens too, because adult strays who are sick or injured are not too dissimilar in their requirements of care. Remember, we only match you to cases we can handle. Share and RT away!



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Monday, September 29, 2014

TNR project this week: at a back alley off Bendemeer - we will need your help

| Behind a coffeeshop |
Colony of unsterilised cats
About 12 cats have been residing at this location near Bendemeer, behind a back alley of a corner coffeeshop open at night. There are feeders, but they cannot raise enough money on their own to sterilise the entire colony of cats, and have enough only to feed them nightly. We did a reconnaissance of the area one late night with the feeder to do a cat count and scope the area. We will be going down to trap the cats here over two trips to get the entire colony sterilised and thus keep their population from burgeoning and causing complaints.

Our first trapping will take place this Wednesday night, 1 October.

Tabby under a car
Skittish black cat coming out to eat
Another black one
A handsome tabbe
One of the friendlier cats
Why we need your help for this project: 
We have 20 free sterilisation slots per month for stray cats that have been given to us by Cat Welfare Society - however - these are for residential stray cats, meaning they have to be microchipped with an HDB block number, a caregiver name and IC number. This Bendemeer back alley cat colony does not fall under this scheme, known as SCSP. Read more about the various sterilisation schemes from Cat Welfare Society, here.

To sterilise a male stray cat, it costs about $35, and a female varies from $45-65. This is excluding trapping and transport fees we have to pay our vendor, as well as the pre- and post-op boarding the cats need. If you can give to help offset our cost of this TNR project, we will be most grateful. You make a gift by depositing to our DBS current account 027-905975-3 and thereafter SMS Elaine at 90880675 to indicate that you have given to the Sterilisation Fund.

If you cannot give, do share this project with your social circle so we can get as much help as needed to get these cats snipped, healthier and happier!



Donate to our cause by making a deposit to our Love Kuching Project DBS Current Account 027-905975-3 or via Credit Card   
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Sunday, September 7, 2014

Cat Care Talk • 27 Sept, Saturday, 4pm to 6pm

We are finally able to launch our first ever inhouse cat care talk! Took us a lot of planning, getting over scheduling humps and finding the time to labour on designing this event specially for you.

Learn an overview about cat behaviour, use of supplements and essential oils, and feline health. The talk will be conducted by our President, Elaine, and will be participant-led - you ask the questions for the discussion on the given topics.

Event details:

Where: Function Room at Terra Vue, 42 St Patrick's Road
 When: 27th September 2014, Saturday, 4pm to 6pm
Cost per particpant:$18.50

What you will get:

A goody bag containing: holistic supplement samples worth $36, pet supplies from Pawfection, cat-themed accessory from Alfie De Meow, cat-themed phone accessory from Dulcetfig, discount vouchers from Goood Pet Collars, Alfie De Meow and from Furry Photos. Light refreshment will be provided from Dough Empire.

How to sign up:

Make payment to our bank account DBS current 027-905975-3 and note the transaction reference number. 
Go to our registration link to submit your name and details so we can verify payment.
Do it fast because the goody bags are limited to the first 20 sign ups only!





Donate to our cause by making a deposit to our Love Kuching Project DBS Current Account 027-905975-3 or via Credit Card
Donate us food or litter at charity rates with free delivery via Pawfection      
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