These Two Orphaned Kittens Are Learning To Enjoy The Warmth Of A Home
For five months, we fed and took care of Cheeky and Frankie, the two female orphaned kittens we found last summer, trying to fend for themselves on the side of a jogging path. On November 1st, we could finally rescue them just in time to have them spayed before they’d go into heat and get pregnant.
Great sacrifices were made so that Cheeky and Frankie could survive being out there on their own, but it was no longer enough; we had to do something to avoid the suffering of countless unwanted kittens that were soon to be born.
At first, our plan was to TNR, have them spayed and released back to the place where we raised them. Considering our extremely challenging housing and financial situation, as we continue fighting eviction and without the necessary means to rent a new place, TNR was the only possible solution we could think of.
However, after their spay surgery and during the 10-day post-op recovery process they spent at the sanctuary, they started acting nothing like feral kittens but more like loving house cats, wanting our attention (especially Cheeky), enjoying their comfy beds and warm blankets, loving their toys, kneading, and purring away. Seeing them so happy after such a rough start in life and all they’ve been through since they were just babies, made us emotional.
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Cheeky and Frankie (6 mon) enjoying the safety and warmth of a home!
As days went by, the more they enjoyed the safety and warmth of a home, the more hopeless Jackie and I felt, knowing it had to come to an end. We’d look at each other and wonder how we’d manage to leave them to their fate on the streets again; just the thought of it was unbearable.
But what other option did we have? How could we offer them a safe “forever” home knowing we are at risk of eviction?
Adopting them out was not an option either. We live in a place that is a highly touristic destination where there is just one small animal shelter that is overflooded with abandoned animals and a few private rescue groups with hundreds of unwanted kittens waiting for adopters. Not to mention how traumatic adopting them out would have been for them and for us as well, after all these months caring for them since they were tiny kittens.
Cheeky having fun with their new scratching pole
I can assure you that one of the hardest aspects of rescuing animals is having to ‘decide’ who gets to be saved and who doesn’t.
The feeling that these innocent lives are in our hands and their future depends on the decisions we make, is a heavy burden and responsibility on our shoulders, especially in our current economically precarious situation.
Last month, what happened to our feral kitten Blacky left us broken-hearted; we made the wrong decision, and he lost his life within 48 hours. Jackie and I went through hell after such a tragic loss and just as our hearts were somehow starting to heal, we find ourselves having to make another life-or-death decision again, about the fate of these two little girls.
Frankie loves interactive toys!
So once again, we had to face the same old dilemma:
Saving the lives of those who cross our path in great need of help or just saving ourselves and the ones we care for at the sanctuary? Considering the dramatic situation we are in, there are no easy answers.
However, once again we decided to live by our values and thought the right thing to do is to save lives while we still can, and despite all the great challenges tomorrow will bring. Jackie and I could not sleep thinking that we’d be responsible for the loss of another innocent life, so we made the decision to keep Cheeky and Frankie and welcome them as members of our furry family.
At this point, we have no idea what could happen to all our rescues if we lose our home; we don’t know if we’ll be able to protect them all until the end, but we are acting according to our conscience and that leaves us with no other option than to keep them off the streets and give them a second chance at life, whatever may come.
So, welcome to the Change One Life family, Cheeky and Frankie!
Do you know how many lives we have saved together by having Cheeky and Frankie spayed?
Two female cats can give birth to up to 10 litters in just one year, that’s about 50 unwanted kittens that would have died on the streets from terminal diseases such as FeLV, starved to death, poisoned, or hit by a motor vehicle; not to mention how hard Cheeky and Frankie’s lives would have been after so many unwanted pregnancies.
Frankie napping in her cave
We hope this rescue and unexpected ‘foster-failure’ comes to all our followers as good news and inspiration, and if you are not one of our supporters yet, we invite you to join us and make a difference!
In a world that keeps moving further away from compassion, that ignores the helpless, and the voiceless, if people of goodwill stick together and pitch in, miracles can be achieved.
For further updates on Cheeky and Frankie, and the rest of our cat sanctuary residents, please follow us on
Cheeky loving all her new toys
Cheeky and Frankie having fun together
Cheeky and Frankie, after spay surgery, adapting to their new life!
Last picture we took of Cheeky and Frankie, right before their rescue…
Blackie (RIP) with Cheeky (white) and Frankie (tabby) a day before we found out poor Blackie had been run over by a car; he was only 3 months old :(
Cheeky before and after pic! We started feeding Cheeky and Frankie when they were tiny kittens…
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