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April 2009

April 30, 2009
Subject: Meet Ringo

Hello. Ringo is possibly a space alien who assumed the form of a cat on his visit to Planet Earth. Clearly, he didn't like it here. The six-month-old, skinny gray kitten was trapped yesterday by Pat Helton, got the works at Blue Cross Animal Clinic ($62.60), and was released earlier today. I assume he's headed back to the mother ship.
This week marks the first time we've trapped two cats in two days, but it was bound to happen with Pat trapping on one side of campus and us on another. April (#136) and Ringo (#137) are the youngest true ferals we've encountered, and they both exhibited a wildness we don't see in the older ferals. The energy of the young can be very challenging!
It's been a busy month--thanks for your support.
For Paws Cat Wrangler

April 27, 2009
Subject: Recent Fundraising, Adoption, Etc.

Hello. We just wrapped up our Fiesta button sale, and coupled with other merchandise sales, we garnered $430.00 for appreciative cats like Bevo and Thomasina. That wraps up our official fundraising for this fiscal year, but we're always open to random acts of monetary kindness.
Felyx, the tuxedo cat, lives with Samantha and Jason, a current student and an alumni. Felyx has settled in quite nicely and has made friends with the younger feline resident; the older cat is less thrilled. A big thank you to Celine and husband Lee for fostering and to Samantha and Jason for giving Felyx a great home.
We've received several reports of newcomer cats on campus and are trapping in various locations. Please let us know if you spot any newbies. Thanks for your support.
For Paws Cat Wrangler

April 20, 2009
Subject: Button Up

Hello. Cien pitched in to help us sell buttons in the Quad last week, and it just wore him out. However, Fiesta is still in full swing, and we still have some buttons. They're available in the Blume Library. Thanks for your support.
For Paws Cat Wrangler

April 15, 2009
Subject: Buy a Button, Feed a Cat

Hello. We'll be selling buttons in the Quad from 10 AM to 1 PM today. The price is $2.00 per button, and all proceeds benefit cats like Spice and Devlin--who clearly does not want to miss a meal. Thanks for your support.
For Paws Cat Wrangler

April 13, 2009
Subject: Meet Cuete

Hello. Pat Helton trapped this handsome Siamese mix near the Math-Engineering Center. Cuete was wearing a flea collar but was not neutered or microchipped. So off he went to Blue Cross Clinic to get the complete For Paws package for $61.60.
"Cuete" means firecracker in Spanish, but this guy gave up his explosive ways pretty quickly and was returned to campus without incident. We hope the flea collar means Cuete has an owner looking for him and there's a happy ending as with Blackberry and his owner. Cuete is the 134th cat to go through our program.
On a sad note, we also trapped a cat (#135) who was too sick to save. On Dr. Beissner's recommendation, Outback was humanely euthanized ($32.00) to alleviate his suffering. Thanks for your support. Buttons, buttons, buttons. Need I say more?
For Paws Cat Wrangler

April 7, 2009
Subject: Two Happy Stories

Hello. We had reports of a black cat hanging around the gazebo, so we trapped him. He looked like Slinky (#121), but he didn't have a tipped ear; Blue Cross confirmed he was neutered but had no microchip. Thus he became Blackberry (#133) and was vaccinated, chipped, and tipped ($32.60) and returned to campus.
Before we released him, Pat Helton alerted us that a despondent young woman was looking for her neutered black cat. It turns out that Blackberry is actually Daddy and lives right behind the university on Marquette. Cat and human were thrilled to reunite.
Second happy story: Felyx is thriving in her foster home. Celine reports that the black-and-white charmer gets along well with others, displays a lot of curiosity about her surroundings, and has a very hearty appetite. Felyx will soon be ready for adoption.
It's been a bleak spell, but there are successes to enjoy and more work to be done...and fiesta buttons to sell. Sorry to revert so quickly to my shameless huckster mode, but we need to move these buttons. They're available in the Blume Library. Thanks for your support.
For Paws Cat Wrangler

April 6, 2009
Subject: Ongoing Concerns

Patches slideshow

Hello all. First, thanks to all of you who responded to the recent cat deaths on campus. A number of you also had questions I'll try to address.

* Could coyotes, raccoons, or skunks be killing the cats? Coyotes eat their kill; raccoons are vicious fighters who would leave alot more visible damage to the cats' bodies; skunks spray and run away. As morbid as it may sound, I photograph the bodies to show our vet;he doesn't think the cats were killed by wildlife.
* Why are we having so much trouble with dogs now? In this bad economy more people abandon their animals; Animal Care Services no longer picks up dogs unless the dogs bite (or kill) humans; irresponsible owners don't keep their dogs fenced or get them neutered. (I live here; I see the problems.)
* What is St. Mary's official policy regarding animals on campus? From the Physical Plant Services Guide, p.17 "Nuisance stray animals on campus should be reported to x3335. Physical Plant associates will attempt to capture the animaland hold it for release to the City of San Antonio Animal Control facility. Since such animals can constitute a safety and health hazard to the campus populace, feeding and harboring them is strongly discouraged. Cats that are captured in the normal stray animal program are turned over to "FOR PAWS", a university organization that spays and neuters the feral cats and releases them back on campus. The organization is responsible for their care and feeding."

Thank you for your continued support. We have some happy ending stories to report, so please stay tuned.
For Paws Cat Wrangler

April 5, 2009
Subject: Very, Very Sad News (Patches)
Just when you think it can't get any worse. . .Patches was killed by a dog on April 3. The beautiful tortoiseshell had been the feline face of For Paws since April 5, 2004. We believe she was about 10 years old when she died.
Although Patches was a well-known presence on campus, she always maintained her dignity and her distance and never allowed humans to pet her.
As far as we know, Patches was the last cat to give birth on campus. Shortly after she was spayed, Patches "adopted" the kitten Thomasina. They were constant companions for the last five years.
Joe Lucio, faithful feeder and devoted friend, buried Patches alongside the family pets in his back yard.
We'll miss her fierce beauty, matronly calm, and strong sense of boundaries.
For Paws Cat Wrangler

April 3, 2009
Subject: Felyx Update

Hello. Four wonderful people offered to foster Felyx through the Oyster Bake season. Thank you all so much! Professor Celine Jacquemin (Political Science) was first in line,so for the next two weeks Felyx will be living with Celine and her wonderful husband Lee and resident cats Wabbit and Tabby (who may be less than thrilled).
Also, we have a very good lead for a permanent home for Felyx. Keep your fingers crossed. Thanks for your support.
For Paws Cat Wrangler

April 2, 2009
Subject: Meet Felyx (Felix with a Y)

Hello. Felyx was caught Tuesday night through a triple play effort by student Danielle Adan and staff members Norma Valle and Joe Lucio. Dani spotted the tuxedo-clad feline hanging around the Treadaway loading dock and alerted Joe who spread the word to Norma who shared her sandwich with the cat until Joe could arrive to lure her into a carrier. Teamwork!
The petite young female was spayed, vaccinated, microchipped, and eartipped at the Blue Cross Clinic ($97.60) on Wednesday. Felyx is the 133rd cat to go through the program since April 3, 2003. (Yes, it's almost our sixth birthday.)
If anyone wants to adopt or foster Felyx through Oyster Bake, please let me know today. Otherwise, we'll release her this afternoon.
Also, the third annual For Paws Fiesta Button sale is officially underway! More than two dozen different cats from the past year are featured, including current residents, adoptees, and cats who got fixed and got away. Please stop by the Blume Library and buy a button of your favorite For Paws cat. Thanks for your support.
For Paws Cat Wrangler

April 1, 2009
Subject: Sad News (Babe)

Hello. I'm sad to report that the feral kitten Babe is dead. Pat Helton found his body in the Pecan Grove Tuesday morning. Babe and his mother Ruth were trapped at V. J. Keefe Field, sterilized and vaccinated, and returned to campus in January. Mother and son had established a colony of two at the Math-Engineering Center where many students expressed an interest in them.
Babe was just starting to explore outside his home range. Unfortunately, he encountered a dog who kills—perhaps the same dog who killed Lemon Drop. Long-time list members know that we've faced these sad situations before. As long as irresponsible people let their dogs roam, cats will be in peril.
Although Babe was too wild to get close to, we'll miss his small, fierce presence on campus. Several videos that capture his personality and spirit are available in the Movie Clips section of our web page (http://library.stmarytx.edu/acadlib/circ/Paw/ForPaws.html).
Babe was among the 132 cats that have gone though the For Paws program. Our successes far outweigh our losses, so we'll shed our tears and then continue with our work. Thanks for your support in good times and bad.
For Paws Cat Wrangler
Comments? Email Caroline Byrd or call Caroline at 436-3430, ext.1317.

For Paws