Who we are

Cherry Street Cats is me (Robin), my husband Steve, Sandi, Michelle, Verena and Kent, a group of dedicated cat lovers who care for a colony of feral cats in the east end of Toronto. I also have a great rescue team of Lesley, Joanne, and Susan. Together we do our best to make the lives better for feral and homeless cats and kittens. 500+ cats helped in five years +!

Thursday, May 25, 2017

I've seen fire and I've seen rain

I always turn off my cell phone at night so I don't hear the annoying pings of the texts coming in at all hours.  This morning I turned on my phone to find way too many texts!  There had been a massive fire at the recycling plant where our colony is.  It happened overnight, there were 40 fire trucks at one point.  Of course I was worried about my kitties but it was pouring rain this morning, not the best time to look for cats and access was blocked this morning.

This afternoon when the rain let up Sandi and I went down and had no trouble getting in and thankfully saw all our cats!  Hank's gang was a bit stressed, those trucks and sirens must have been terrifying and there is a lot of cleanup going on, but they still wanted to eat.  They are survivors!
Down the road at Sadie and Misty's spot it was all flooded, what a day.

It makes me so happy when I get these updates from Carol, look at our Floppy, no rain or scary sirens for him, just enjoying the view from his condo window.

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Mom and kittens saved!

Another urgent plea went out this week about a mom and kittens in a yard near Yonge and Eglinton.  I was feeling a bit overworked but called the homeowner, she is allergic so wasn't willing to do much but thankfully she had a cat loving friend who lived nearby who I connected with.

With some encouragement and guidance, Melanie was able to grab two of the kittens and then Friday afternoon we went and trapped one more and the mom.  That left one little one all alone, Melanie tried all that evening but no luck, the poor thing was probably so scared.  I worried all night.  Melanie had the other three kittens in her bathroom and she went back first thing Saturday morning.  She was about to pack it in after a few hours when boom last orange baby in the trap!  Case closed!

The kittens are about 8 weeks I think, they just need a bit of socializing, and we will have to see if mom is friendly.  It really makes a difference when someone in the community is willing to get involved.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Full on kittens!

Kitten season is in full swing it seems!  Our week started with a full evening of trapping.  We began at Vic Park and Danforth where we've gotten 10 of 12 done but the last two were not to be that evening.  We then made our way across town to Keele and Eglinton to a new-ish to us colony.  Last time we got three cats and this time we quickly trapped two, thankfully we are almost done there.  I had been speaking with a woman earlier about some kittens and since we were close we decided to go have a look and see how old they were.

When we arrived the feeder had five tiny kittens all out on the grass and her young sons were playing with them.  Many of the kittens had already died.  There were two that couldn't have been more than two weeks old and the other three were about four weeks.  Normally I would never take two week old kittens and even four is borderline but these kittens were no longer in a safe spot and their mom wasn't around, we had no confidence they would be cared for so we bundled them up.

God bless Lesley, she bottle fed them overnight and by morning thanks to the wonders of Facebook and an amazing community, we found a super experienced bottle feeder for the tinies.  The older ones have been placed now too!
Our first batch of kittens
 Of course we will be going back there to TNR the colony.  That was enough of the west end for the week so yesterday we went to Vic Park and Sheppard to the colony we just can't finish, too many feeders and the females are very smart.  As soon as I went into the yard I saw a mom nursing five kittens so I ran back with a carrier and managed to grab one before the rest ran under a junker car. Two hours later we had two more kittens and an adult, two babies to go.  These ones are probably about five weeks.
Batch 2 of babies

One of the ones who waited us out.
I'd say that was a good week so far!  Four adults (three females!) who are spayed and neutered and eight little lives saved!

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Kitten visits are the best!

Susan is doing such an amazing job with her kittens, she has a new appreciation now for all that mother cats do.  There have been challenges with this bunch, they started as bottle feeders and are now eating on their own, but they had diarrhea and weren't gaining that much weight.  In the last few days they have turned a corner. who knew one could be so excited about solid stool.

I love going over to visit, if I'm feeling the slightest bit down about anything, watching kittens run around and play cures all.

Monday, May 8, 2017

Floppy gets a home!

It's official!!!  After two weeks at Carol's all is going well with Floppy, now renamed Bear.  He is still shy but purrs when she pats him, and is starting to explore and is working things out with her cats. So Floppy (Bear) has a real home!  I cried this morning when I saw him on the adopted page.  He's come a long way in the four years I've known him, I am so happy that he will never be cold or wet or in danger again.  You couldn't ask for a better home than Carol's!  In my shameless way I asked her if she would adopt him, knowing she has a soft spot for the cats who have lived rough.  I never imagined she would say yes.  But she did, in his case, the fact that he is older and FIV is a selling point for her, one of those amazing people who wants to help the cats who are "special".

So yay for Floppy!  It's a good day in our cat world!
Floppy before

Floppy safe inside

Sunday, April 30, 2017

A good day to save cats

It's a long story, aren't they all?  My neighbour's daughter's boyfriend has an upstairs neighbour (confused yet?) who has a cat who had kittens.  Of course she reached out to me and I said sure I can help.  I went over Thursday evening and well it wasn't quite what I expected.  Momma was friendly and the kittens were hiding, the place was a mess to be polite.  Squalid is a more accurate terms, a wall of empty Laker Lager boxes, one litter box that was all urine and feces, but on the upside the guys were nice.

I went back yesterday and the kittens were in a room, so we managed to grab them, although I must say they are pretty wild, even though they were born inside I'm not sure they have been handled much but they will come around.  There was some talk of them giving up mamma too but they wouldn't sadly, at least though they will let me get her spayed, this was her third litter.

Then back to regularly scheduled programming, I fed my feral colonies (about 22 cats in total), and then we took a break and enjoyed a small grove of cherry trees near the colony.  Who needs the west end traffic and crowds?!

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Second batch of kittens!

Well clearly kitten season is on!  Michelle's kittens are doing well so this week it was Susan's turn, a fellow trapper Brenda called to say she had caught five 4 week old kittens, could we help.  Susan volunteered without hesitation even though there would be some bottle feeding involved.  Who wouldn't want these cuties?  And even better news Brenda trapped the mom too who has now been spayed.
Lesley and I went back to try to trap our elusive females at the black and white colony and amazingly we got the mom of Michelle's kittens, and a male too under the drop trap.  For the first time, the mom didn't want to leave the trap, she wanted to stay and eat!  It took a bit to get her transferred into a trap, another reason we generally don't use a drop trap alone.
It's been a good week, kittens rescued, females spayed, that's our goal!

Monday, April 24, 2017

First kittens of 2017!

Lesley and I have been trapping at a new colony this spring, if you may remember the first time out we got six cats!  Then one and now nothing.  There are three females left to be spayed, two had kittens who died, and we didn't know what happened with the third litter, but last week a neighbour spied them in her yard, and discovered they were under the deck.  With the warm sunny weather on the weekend the kittens came out to play and were able to be grabbed.  Two days three kittens safe! They are probably about six weeks and Michelle is having a great time with them, they are figuring out eating and playing and just utterly delightful.  Thankfully they didn't have enough time to decide to be feral!  We have two black and white females and the grey and white is male.  These floofs will be snapped up!  I can't spend much time with them I too may succumb to their charms.
Ariel, Puck and Ophelia

Puck our boy

Ophelia the last to be caught
It is always so heartwarming knowing these loves will have a wonderful life!

Friday, April 21, 2017

My rounds

On a day when I'm feeding more than one colony my day goes something like this, after feeding my home colony and doing any catsits, I head to the CG colony where we have 10 cats who live in a laneway.  It's only a 5 minute drive, and I leave them with six or seven bowls of canned food and the same of dry food and water of course.  Since it's a laneway and can be busy I don't always see all the cats but usually see at least a half dozen.

In the afternoon I head south and go first to the yard where I feed our two groups of four, they are big canned food eaters and because they are all getting old, I often spoil them with Fancy Feast.  Then down the road I go to Mystery's spot, she is always there, unfortunately I rarely see Patches and Owen now due to the changes, but I have seen them in the last few weeks so I know they are ok. Around the corner to my last (and newest) feeding location, I love these two cats, Sadie the tortie gets so excited about her food, she dances!  They are the youngest of all I feed they are probably only about three years old, but in the most dangerous location.  Every day I breathe a sigh of relief when I see all my regulars.
And then I fit in a lovely walk along the Spit, I love this time of the year, and the lake, especially if it's choppy and wavy, reminds me of the ocean.  On weekdays sometimes I'm lucky and don't see another person, just the water and the birds and the sky.
Then it's home to a sinkful of dishes to get ready for another day.

Monday, April 17, 2017

It's spring!

Almost seven years a scrawny and shy black and white cat showed up in our backyard.  What did we do?  Fed him of course, then got him neutered.   Charlie has never been content to be indoors though so as much as we don't like it, we have let him be our outside cat, but he has to spend the night inside.

He's very happy that it's spring as are we all, here he is today having a nap, on my plants sigh.