Savannah's Paw Tracks

Autobiography of a Former Shelter Cat

Momma Kat (aka Mandy) Is Home


I won’t keep you in suspense. Mandy, as I have named Momma Kat, will remain for the rest of her life in the care of her foster human. The foster human is also keeping all five of her kittens for as long as they live. It was determined by the foster that the tightly bonded family would suffer too much anguish if they are split apart.

Mom L has tried to get contact with their now permanent guardian in order to deliver Mandy’s Hope Chest. We have had no response after a few attempts to reach out to schedule delivery.

So I made another decision. I told Mom L it was time to find another cat who is as deserving as Mandy to give the hope chest items to. I’m sure Mandy won’t mind and would approve of the two adult male cats I have chosen.

We have never been able to get updated photos of Mandy and her five kittens, who are about ten to eleven months old now. But I thought you would enjoy viewing those that we have collected over the course of this story.

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Alas, none of the five kittens have been given names either. The rescue organization and foster human decided that this family of six did not need to be separated to assist them in becoming more socialized to humans. They have therefore become more bonded to each other and even other cats in this home. They did not want to hurt the cats’ feelings by separating them. The foster believes separating them might mean taking a chance that someone might grow tired of them or decide to get rid of them which would leave them with never seeing their siblings again and years of loneliness and even pain.

The rescue did not promote Mandy or her kittens through their network of supporters since last summer. We do not know why. They have been listed on Pet Finder and the other cat rescues Mom L got to courtesy post them on their own websites. And of course, Mandy has been hugely promoted by all of you! Thank you for trying to help her.

I don’t know about you kitties and woofies reading this ending to Momma Kat’s Mandy’s story, but I don’t think we have the same feelings about sticking with our birth family as humans do. We are not the same as hawks, wolves, Sandhill cranes and others who mate for life. We are not like Elephants, wolves and Kangaroos who stick to our birth parents for a year or longer.

We can be separated and once placed in a loving home with a safe space in which to live and food to eat, we do not look back over our tails to see what happened to our siblings, or even our parents.

This makes me wonder if humans all too often attach their own feelings to us rescue cats and make decisions for our care based on what “they” would want. What about what “we” want like our very own humans to give us chin scritches and laps to nap on?

Please help me figure this out by leaving a comment to answer this question.

Can humans assign too many of their own range of “feelings” like “anger”, “guilt”, “sad”—to rescue cats, when considering a best placement for them?

Now allow me to introduce you to the two adult shelter rescue cats I have chosen to be recipients of Mandy’s hope chest. It will be split between them. (please do paw each photo to bigify—worth it!)

Charming Jack aka CJ

His rescue organization describes him and his story—“This poor little guy was brought in to a county shelter assumed to have been hit by a car and with his right rear leg in bad shape.  After being evaluated by specialists, it was determined that surgery could not fix the bad break and an amputation was necessary.  Three sturdy legs later, this guy is all purrs, pets and affection!”

Happily I can report that CJ has just been adopted into a marvelous home!!


Dad P provided limo service for Bailey when he went in for one of his checkups. His rescue organization describes him and his story.

“Once being fed as a stray cat, a woman found him in bad shape one day with his right eye badly damaged and his jaw out of alignment.  Taken to a public shelter, it appeared he’d been hit by a car and immediate care was needed.  His right eye was beyond repair and was promptly removed and his jaw was realigned and sutured as it heals.  Yet despite all of this, nothing slows his purrmotor down, nor his muffin-making with his paws in total contentment.  He is such an amazing soul!”

So there you have it! The hope chest contents are still going to adult shelter rescue cats who have survived being hit by a car—just like courageous Mandy!

Don’t forget to answer my question in comments. Here it is again—

Can humans assign too many of their own range of “feelings” like “anger”, “guilt”, “sad”—to rescue cats, when considering a best placement for them?


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30 thoughts on “Momma Kat (aka Mandy) Is Home

  1. Pingback: Pawing Forward: Mandy’s (aka Momma Kat) Hope Chest Brings Joy to Others | Savannah's Paw Tracks

  2. meowmeowmans on said:

    We’re really glad the Mandy and her kittens were adopted, but the whole thing sounds so strange to us. Isn’t the idea to socialize them, so that they can be adopted? Thank you for sharing the wonderful hope chest with Bailey and CJ.

  3. Pingback: I Thought We Talked About This Before…!! | Savannah's Paw Tracks

  4. I’m happy that Mandy and her kittens have a forever home finally, even if it’s not exactly how some would’ve hoped it turned out. It’s a shame that they aren’t keeping in contact and won’t accept the hope chest. But I’m glad you’ve found a new pair to use it for. And yes, I think humans definitely apply our own feelings to cats (and dogs). I know that I find myself doing it sometimes. But I also try and do what is best for the animals.

  5. Katie isabella on said:

    Savvy, I can’t get to you except thru Twitter. But yes. Humans assign their own feelings to their pets. That can be not a good thing sometimes for the cat. But I am glad the Hope Chest contents will go to a deserving kitty. I am wondering why no contact of mama and her babies is allowed to you loving rescuers who went through so much to make life for mama cat and her babies good. You are a hero and I hope you are able to know what happened to that sweet family.

  6. We can become strongly bonded to other cats/dogs/even our humans and grieve when separated from them. But just like humans we can form new bonds and move on with our lives. And not all cats want their kittens around forever. Snowball (Mommy’s first cat) was very territorial and possessive of Mommy and would take her kittens off when they were 8 weeks old if homes hadn’t been found for them. She seemed to think her job was done and it was time for them to find their own homes. Funnily enough she always left them with people who wanted them. Usually they would call and say your kittens are here, and if you don’t mind we would love to keep them. We are happy that Mandy and her kittens have a safe place to live and have each other, but we do wish they could have found wonderful homes of their own. We have noticed that some rescues don’t seem that interested in finding homes for the dogs and cats in their care and are almost hoarders. It seems they have a hard time letting go of the animals they are fostering even if it might be better for the animal.

  7. We happy to hear Momma Kat aka Mandy and her kittens have a permanent home now and will be taken care of, though it really isn’t the outcome we know you were hoping for. We’re sorry to hear that Mom L hasn’t heard from the foster mom though. We know how disconcerting this must be. We think you have chosen two worthy cats to get the hope chest.

  8. I REALLY REALLY hope that their new family will be gracious enough to allow the delivery of the Hope Chest, I know that it would be such a blessing for them to have the gifts given freely and with a lot of love.

    There have been some lovely comments here that, I hope, will provide some perspective – they certainly made me think BUT I want the family to have the gift promised and if I can help is any way, please let me know.

    It is very rare a family can stay together – our fosters did not but maybe they bonded closely. She is a sensitive soul and I wonder if this deepened their bond more than we may realise.

    Just some thoughts from far away – and I want to acknowledge your total and utter committment to this wonderful family from the get go.

  9. Flynn on said:

    It is with mixed emotions that I say I am glad Mandy and her family have a permanent home. I do think it very strange though that the carer has given no updates on them or replied to emails for the Hope Chest. Maybe the carer became too possessive and didn’t like all the help that was being given. Obviously I don’t know, but it is such a pity that the family weren’t socialised to give them the best chance of getting their own forever homes.
    I am glad the hope chest is going to two deserving kitties.

  10. eye noe this commint haz nothin ta due with this post
    but eye wanted ta say thanx 777 bazillion timez for
    yur kindnezz two me & me familee last week
    sorree for de copee N paste type for mat…….lovez all wayz
    boomer ♥

  11. Mee-you Savannah an Sage wee fink Charming Jack an Bailey will toe-tallee appurrciate thee Hope chest items fur sure!!!
    They sure are innspirashunss to all of us.
    ***nose rubsss*** Dharth Henry xxxx

  12. Hello Savannah & Mom L I totally believe some people invest their own feelings into the animals & make decisions based on their own emotions rather than the animal’s wellbeing.
    And I have witnessed a similar situation. My ex-fiancé adopted Minxy a pregnant Burmese & she gave birth to 6 kits. J was there to help with the birth & helped raise the kits. They stayed with him for quite a few months & as much as J loved them all he felt they deserved a better life than being stuck in 2 rooms. So we looked for a farmhouse placement & a friend of mine welcomed Minxy & 5 of the kits (who were 4-5 months old) to her place. J kept Henry Two Socks. As much as they were all bonded to each other, henry Two Socks was perfectly happy with J. I used to get pix & updates from my friend & Minxy was spayed & her kits fixed & they were doing well.
    As responsible pet owners we need to remain objective about our actions. the animals needs MUST come first.
    It sounds like the foster Mom is a bit (ALOT) of a control freak! And I find it odd that she has not sent pix or updates to the Shelter or you….
    All we can do is hope Mandy & her kits will be well looked after……
    (((hugs))) Sherri-Ellen & Dharth Henry

  13. We too are happy the hope chest is going to two very deserving kitties, who, by the way, are absolutely adorable. I perosnally feel htat we humans do sometimes project our feelings and thoughts onto animals thinking that they think like us – which they do not.

  14. The Swiss Cats on said:

    We’re glad the whole family found a forever home. It’s a little bit surprising that their foster human didn’t answer your mom though. Purrs

  15. I don’t think it’s one or the other. I think humans project their own feelings and experiences of feelings on cats … but I think cats are capable of much more than most people think (starving/homeless Bear Cat ignored the wet food I brought out for him in favor of ear and belly rubs … even though by the time he’d had enough loves the other ferals were eating “his” food). Cats aren’t just instinct. I suspect Bear clung to his Mom as long as he could … until his Mom kicked him out of the “nest” when she was ready to reproduce again. I’ve heard similar stories about male cats … one that is attached to Mom until she essentially makes him leave at 6-12 months. Of course, the females often stick together to help each other (vs. Momma Kat who had to leave her young to feed them … with more than one female … one hunts while the other one watches the kittens) – so it’s hard to determine whether they have attachments to each other beyond the practical. I think a lot depends on the Mom. Momma Kat sounds like she was very loving of her kittens – very involved. Many Moms just wait for the kittens to be old enough to be on their own. She and her kittens probably would be okay on their own … but if someone is willing to love and take care of all of them, the most important part is that they have a home and the love and care they deserve. It’s possible that many of the feelings the foster/forever home attached to the family were just ways to convince herself to keep all of them … humans find ways to talk themselves into what they truly want, and there’s nothing wrong with that either!

  16. I agree with those who have said that we tend to think about what the CATS are thinking in a “human viewpoint” (of course since WE are human) but while I totally believe cats can feel happiness/grief/love/loss, I’m not sure it’s fair to think of them in those aspects as if they were HUMANS. I think it’s great Mandy and her babies will be together – I wish it was in a situation where they were with someone who would at least communicate with you after all you’ve done to help Mandy out. That would be great. But maybe we can just wish them well and hope things work out FOREVER for them. As for the hope chest recipients – YAY! They both look like wonderful cats who have been most fortunate and will make good use of the hope chest goodies. I wish them well and think it’s wonderful that you’ve been able to do much for ALL of them………

    Hugs, Pam, Angel Sam and Teddy

  17. It seems pretty rude that Mandy’s human hasn’t responded, very odd after all you’ve done. The two sweeties deserve those hope chest items!

  18. Tammy Rieser on said:

    I would be interested in seeing the comments off the posting hmmm – I agree with Savvy – those cats should have had a separate life/adopter.   Tammy Rieser

    “Maybe it’s animalness that will make the world right again: the wisdom of elephants, the enthusiasm of canines, the grace of snakes, the mildness of anteaters. Perhaps being human needs some diluting.” ― Carol Emshwiller

    From: Savannah’s Paw Tracks To: Sent: Sunday, March 12, 2017 11:03 PM Subject: [New post] Momma Kat (aka Mandy) Is Home #yiv7295205536 a:hover {color:red;}#yiv7295205536 a {text-decoration:none;color:#0088cc;}#yiv7295205536 a.yiv7295205536primaryactionlink:link, #yiv7295205536 a.yiv7295205536primaryactionlink:visited {background-color:#2585B2;color:#fff;}#yiv7295205536 a.yiv7295205536primaryactionlink:hover, #yiv7295205536 a.yiv7295205536primaryactionlink:active {background-color:#11729E;color:#fff;}#yiv7295205536 | Savannah’s Paw Tracks posted: “HIYA!!   SAVANNAH HERE!!!I won’t keep you in suspense. Mandy, as I have named Momma Kat, will remain for the rest of her life in the care of her foster human. The foster human is also keeping all five of her kittens for as long as they live. It was dete” | |

  19. 15andmeowing on said:

    I think you chose well to give the hope chest to these 2 very worthy kitties who have been through so much.
    I am glad Mandy and family will stay together at this point. I think it is OK when kittens are young enough to go to different families, but once that bond is there after so much time, I think they are better off together. I feel bad that when I adopted Joanie and Sammy, their other sibling had already been adopted. They were 4 at the time so I am sure they miss their sibling.

  20. Mary McNeil on said:

    I know cats can get very closely bonded, and not necessarily to their actual family. I have two littermates who could care less about each other, but the little girl is bonded to her black brofur who came from a shelter. (Or maybe it’s that he is bonded to her. She is frightfully independent !)
    Strange as the circumstances are, I am glad Mandy and kits have a safe home. Purrs.

  21. Glad she’s got a home, but I wish you could have heard from her purrson.

  22. We are glad Mandy and her babies have a purr-manent place to live and a purr-manent caretaker, but We are concerned that their foster human has not replied to any of your attempts to contact them. That seems furry strange to Us.
    At any rate, though, We are glad that these two handsome mancats are now being given a new chance in life.

  23. Mandy has a human who takes care of her and her by now nearly adult themselves kittens (must be as old as FunTom was when he was taken to my home). And I think you are absolutely right – humans often think of pets in human categories. Cats may be playful, but often when humans say “Oh, look, how cute, they play with each other!”it is not play!
    Same for love. My cats love(d) me, I am sure of that. But not the way humans display love. Cats can be jealous – but it is not a human jealousy. And cats can be shy and afraid – but it is not the human panick. Cats are different from humans. They are tiny, compared to humans, which means more danger in this world. For sure they are often cautious when we say shy.
    Cats are not only not humans and not displaying human love – they are not dogs, either. They might now and then show similar habits – but they are still cats. With different needs from dogs and humans – and therefore different emotions.
    While my cat misses FunTom slightly and bonds stronger with me, now, that the tom is gone, she isn’t appetite-less, she isn’t listless, she knows no melancholy. Still I think in her own way she IS grieving – just not like humans would or like I do.

  24. Well, I’m glad the hope chest is going to a couple of deserving kitties. I’m with you, though, this is not exactly the happy ending I had envisioned either. I think one of the most important parts of a rescue group is socializing the cats and kittens and making them ready for adoption. I don’t know why this didn’t happen with this family.

  25. I’m glad that many has her home now and I ‘m thankful that CJ found a home too and I cross my paws for Bailey… I sometimes wish we still would walk and had no cars, but that’s BS, I know ;o)))
    I think you are right, family is maybe the family of our furever home and not the litter mates or our biological dad&mother… Easy and his sister disliked each other and his dad was also not keen to see him… so I think this is more our human way we want for animals too…

Waving paw...HI!...what'd 'cha think...??

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