Thursday 29 November 2012

Blog guest: Deadra Krieger with 'Ruff Love'

If you've had your eyes peeled the past couple of days, you'll have seen me over at Deadra 'D.F.' Krieger's blog to chat about my dog, a rescue mutt called Buddy.

Well, today, I am delighted to welcome D.F. over to my blog to tell us about one of her very special pets. But be warned... if you get emotional over pets, you may want to grab a tissue before you proceed ;-)

So, D.F, put your feet up and make yourself at home, it's over to you...

It's no secret I'm big into animal rescue, and I have the household to prove it. Five cats, 2 dogs, 2 ferrets, a gerbil, and various fish fill any spare moment I have with antics and the need to clean. Every single one of our cats comes from a rescue situation, but one cat in particular will stick out the most when we have visitors...If you can find her.

Lady LeFaye, also known as Faye Cat, is one of rescues whose circumstances left physical marks on her instead of just emotional ones. You see, Faye was found on the side of a road having seizures when she was a kitten. Uncertain what was wrong with her, and without the vet facilities to check, the animal control took her back to their facilities and tried to make her as comfortable as possible. They didn't expect her to live til the morning.

The next day Faye was still alive. The entire left side of her body, plus her tail was paralyzed, but she was fighting hard to get up and move around. A foster for the animal control volunteered to take her home and work with her. For a few weeks they put her through aquatherapy where she regained use of her back leg, most of her tail, and some of her front shoulder. But, like most animal controls, her time was limited and her number had been called. She had only a few days left to find a home or be euthanized.

Enter me. I was trolling through a Craigslist looking for a dog for a friend who needed help. I was in no way, shape, or form looking to add to my own family. I saw an ad that said "Due to be euthanized" and I clicked on it to see what kind of animal it was. The little face that stared back at me was terrified, with wide blue eyes, and distinctly feline. My finger hesitated over the mouse button as I stared at her photo then did a quick read-through of very limited information on her bio. Basically all it said was "Hi, I'm at such and such number. I'm female, shy, and need a home or I'm being put to sleep soon."

After an agonizing moment I clicked the window closed, but I couldn't get her photo out of my head. Something about her just screamed she needed Not just anyone, but me. I talked to my husband about it and the next day I made the phone call. Within hours we had an appointment to go see her. When we got there, she was so scared she kept hiding her face in the bend of my elbow. She wanted absolutely nothing to do with us. She also couldn't lift her tail or use her front leg. I have a bad leg myself and it just really hit a nerve that no one wanted this gorgeous cat simply because she was considered 'broken.'

Long story short, we adopted the nameless cat and brought her home. It took a few weeks, but we finally made friends. We discovered, while going through the adoption process, that Faye's injury was caused by a venomous snake bite. Though she has regained full use of her tail, her leg is another story. She can flex her toes, she can put weight on it and use it to stand or walk on. Faye cannot, however, bend the elbow joint. She has learned ways around this and can keep up with all the other cats in our house just fine. Faye is still very shy with anyone but her mommy. She loves sitting in my lap while I'm typing and throwing everything within reach on my computer desk onto the floor. She especially loves stealing my pens or pencils and hiding them.

Animals with disabilities like Faye are often overlooked because they are different. You wouldn't refuse to become friends with a human just because they walk with a limp, or have a vision impairment, or are scared of storms. Animals are just like people; they can lead fulfilling, loving, wonderful lives as your best friend if you'll just open your heart and see who they are on the inside.

Thank you ever so much for sharing Faye's story, Deadra. Don't mind me, I just have a little dust in my eye or something.

I'm sure there are sad tales - or should that be tails? - such as Faye's (and Buddy's) the world over unfortunately. Wouldn't it be nice to be able help or support these poor animals in some way?

I would love to have more rescue pets but it just isn't feasible for us right now, which I'm sure is a similar story for many of you too... no space, too much commitment, allergies... the list goes on and the reasons are all very valid. So how about buying a book instead?

This book, in fact?

In animal rescue, no story ever has a happy beginning, but can they have a happy end?
Working animal rescue is never pretty, and not all animals get that perfect ending. Follow the stories of some amazing animals who not only had a rough life, but beat the odds and found complete contentment. Kittens, dogs, and even a bobcat fill these pages with their true "tails" of being rescued and getting that second chance.
Note: 60% of all royalties from this book are donated straight to animal rescue.

Buy it now in a choice of digital formats
$2.49 / £1.67

Not only would you be getting a fabulous read, you would be indirectly making a donation to a very worthy cause, and maybe prolonging the life of an extraordinary animal who's luck is down and just waiting for the right person to come along.

Need more convincing?


"I can't spay my cats," the woman protested, her arms crossed as she glared at us. "They are a source of income for me."

"With all due respect, none of your cats are purebred. They are just regular, domestic shorthairs. How are you making a profit off them?" My coworker stared down at her. I studied her expression while waiting for her answer. My coworker had made a very good point and I was just as curious as he as to what her answer would be. She was starting to fiddle with the rings that encircled her fingers. That was never a good sign. It was evident she was afraid to tell us what was really going on. In an effort to break the wall I could see forming, I pointed to the containers. "Are you into quilting or something like that?"

Her expression brightened and she scurried over to one of the shelves. "No, no," she exclaimed as she pulled a container off the shelf. "Look inside."

I approached the container and discovered several small snakes within. Albino corn snakes, to be exact. "Ah, you keep snakes?"

Snakes didn't frighten me and now I knew what the musty smell was. My gaze traveled over the shelves once more as I tried to estimate the number of snakes she had. I counted at least forty containers, but I had no idea how many snakes she had in each.

"I breed them," she stated proudly. "I breed pythons too, but those are in the back room."

"May we see?" my coworker asked.

She nodded and led us to a back room. It was very clean with several large, aquarium-type containers set up. I counted about five pythons total. Each was lengths that I found fascinating and frightening. I said snakes don't bother me. What I meant was snakes who can't kill me don't bother me. Some of them certainly had the size to make me question the safety of myself, and her children. One had a nice little bulge from a recent meal.

That's when I saw the kitten...


  1. wow couldn't stop that feeling of horror as the dots connected. good blog post.

    1. Thank you Ella.

      I shudder every time I read the excerpt and am still working up the courage to read the book. Maybe once I've stocked up on tissues!?

    2. I still have nightmares over that place. And yes, a box of tissues might be handy. Just remembering the animals I've worked with brings tears to my eyes some days.

  2. Great post Deadra and Aurelia. I have to admit to having a bit of dust in my eye too. Your story is inspiring Deadra, good for you for following your instincts and giving Faye a home. We got our cat Zorro from the RSPCA when he was six weeks old. He was meant to be with us too - he ran straight up my leg into my arms when we first met him and is the most affectionate thing even now, nine years later. I wish you all the very best with your book, the excerpt had me hooked!

  3. Thank you very much, Christy. *Hands tissue* It's amazing how animals just know when they look at us, but sometimes it's us that need to be convinced, eh?

  4. Awesome post ladies. I have my own box of tissues but thanks for the offer. I've read Ruff Love and over tears between stories I shared the rescues with my DH. He is as soft as me and was horrified at the way some animals get treated. The tale that got us the most was with the litter of black labs and the one chocolate that you saved Deadra. I have a black lab myself and don't understand the black dog syndrome. Luckily we don't have that in Australia. Thank goodness for people like Deadra who fight for those that can't.

    1. I had no idea you'd read the book. That particular story was very painful for me to share. I still harbor a great amount of guilt over the black puppies that got left behind. I'm glad Australia doesn't have black dog syndrome. Black dogs and cats in America are VERY hard to place, and it breaks my heart people will turn away from an animal based on color alone.


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