Who we are

Cherry Street Cats is me (Robin), my husband Steve, Sandi, Michelle, Verena, Vinyse, Derek, Kent, and Connie, 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 +!

Monday, December 31, 2012

2012 Year in Review

Where do I start?  It was such a crazy busy year.  For the colony it's been a tough year, losing four cats,   including Jackson and Tina the two favourites.  Jackson tragically drowned in January and Tina died in May.  It's not the same without their friendly faces rushing to greet us.  Jo and Sam also disappeared.  There were also a few injuries and illnesses dealt with and the constant flux down there.  I know that eventually the colony will die out, and that is the goal, but emotionally it's so hard, we become very attached to these cats.
Dear sweet Tina, how we miss her.
There were some new faces at the colony too, a mysterious litter of kittens appeared in the summer.  We still don't know who the mom is.  Thankfully they were all trapped and have found homes.  Recently a tame B & W female showed up, she has been adopted too and just yesterday we saw yet another new face.

Cherry Street kitten

Cherry Street kittens just after rescuing.

In terms of my other rescue projects, I helped over 100 cats this year.  I took on a big TNR project in the west end.  At Maria's we TNRed 18 adults and pulled out 19 kittens.  The other rescues of tame cats and kittens and TNRs is too much to mention, but it sure seemed like there was something going on every week.
Me with my new drop trap, came in handy.

Cat on the roof at Maria's

More cats at Maria's
In September I took on another big project, rescuing a dozen kittens and three adults, all tame, from the same spot, clearly a dump.  I discovered today that a neighbour there has been feeding two cats who have just appeared, I hope it's just a coincidence and that the cat dumper isn't at it again.
Scooter, one the many kittens rescued who found homes.

Our car on any given day.
We will see what 2013 brings, there are always cats who need help.  I am grateful that I could help as many as I could and so appreciative of all those who are part of the team.  I am priviledged to know so many wonderful cat lovers who are willing to put themselves out to help.  I've had times this year when I've been exhausted and burnt out but no way am I quitting this work, when I see how the cats outside live, especially this time of the year, it only makes me more determined.

Hope all the kitties outside have found a warm spot for the night!  Happy New Year to all!

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Oh my aching back

No stay at home snow days for us. It's dig, dig, dig, shovelling paths for the cats and I'm feeling it today, I'm totally crippled.  I've come to hate the snow because of the cats.  You can tell they hate the feel of it on their paws.  Feeding takes longer, it's just unpleasant all around, but only a few more months until spring.

Pseudo making his way through the snow

Me shovelling

Hank and MC in the snow

Socks and Lionel make their way
 And I just threw this photo in because I like it, all of our orange guys at home in one spot.
Time for some A5-35!

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

A very catty Christmas

Christmas to us means feeding cats.  After taking care of the bunch at home, we loaded up the car with food and water and headed out.  In addition to our colony, we fed three other colonies whose caregivers were away for the holidays.  I think our numbers came to 35 ferals fed yesterday.  My kind of Christmas.
MC, Pseudo and Jet enjoy their Christmas dinner

MC trying to get past the snow

Pseudo and Jet

Pseudo and Jet playing

Hank waits

Pebbles chowing down



One of our guest colonies
Hope everyone had a very Merry Christmas.  All my Christmas wishes came true this year, Frosty and Meisha found homes, and so did Checkers, now Maya, the most recent rescue.  Sounds like they are loving Maya, amazing she is so sane, I'm glad she found us.

Now if I can just get my neighbour's cat that I am taking care of in before the storm, all will be good.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Road trip

Last week Steve and I went on a road trip to Gerri's catuary to deliver some food.  Gerri has a wonderful sanctuary for cats, they all seem so happy and healthy, and she remembers all their names - I have trouble with that myself sometimes at home.

The car loaded up
Gerri kindly took in Petal, a feral I trapped earlier in the year.  She was living in a woodlot and had she been returned would not have been cared for.  Now she has a lovely outdoor enclosure with a cozy shelter and lots of food.
Petal snug in her new home
Our house has felt like a mini cat sanctuary lately, with our bunch, and Checkers in Steve's office.  Tonight our neighbour Ella took Checkers home, as long as it works out with her other cat, Checkers has a wonderful new forever home.  I already was feeling attached to her after only ten days, I am the worst foster parent.

We're looking forward to our round of Christmas feral feeding, I have a few colony feeder friends who will be away, so it will be a busy few days next week.  There's a nasty wind tonight, I think we might actually be in for some winter weather.  I've been so happy that it's been mild but with upcoming below freezing temps it will be a different story, lots of frozen food and water (and fingers) to contend with.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Home sick

I've got a miserable cold right now, just managing to get the cats fed and then back to bed.  This is the only upside to being sick.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Oh happy day!

Christmas came early - Meisha and Frosty, the 12 year old cats, have found homes.  I was overjoyed to hear the news.

What a journey those two had.   I felt so guilty taking them to THS but they took good care of them and most importantly, now they have homes.  Thank you to everyone who helped them and cared about them along the way and thank you to whomever adopted them and gave them a second chance.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Homes for the holidays?

Yesterday was a three for three kind of day.  It started with a trapping of Roller, this gorgeous cat who has been living outside in Regent Park for who knows how long.  I just did the trapping and transport part of this rescue, he went to be neutered and now has gone off to a foster home, and is already purring away.  Hooray for Roller, being warm and safe inside.
Checkers is all set up in Steve's office, she seems so happy to be inside, she is eating up a storm, and is so sweet and friendly.  My lovely neighbour, whose black and white female cat died last week, is considering taking her, I really hope so.  I wish I knew how she ended up at the colony.
I stopped in at the THS last night and more potential good news, Meisha, the senior Himalayan, has a hold on him, so may be going to a home soon.  More fingers crossed.  I would be so happy if that poor guy's journey ended in a new home.  In the last two months, he's been in five different places, but still is totally sweet and gentle, he was sitting on a volunteer's lap when I saw him.

I know cats don't care about Christmas, but I would love for them all to have homes for the holidays.

During times like these, I feel blessed to have the resources, skills and support to have helped these and other cats.  The rest of my life sometimes just feels like noise but it's the cat part that gets me up and makes me feel worthwhile.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Be careful what you wish for

Earlier this week I was feeling a bit odd, with my trapping and rescue plate pretty much empty.  That didn't last long.

When Steve saw a new friendly cat on Tuesday at the colony but no sign of it on Wednesday or Thursday I figured that was that, the cat was just passing through.

There the cat was, though, yesterday when I went to feed, just sitting across from the dumpsters.  I went up to it with a bowl of food and the cute black and white cat meowed at me, clearly had been someone's pet.  This time I was equipped with both a trap and a carrier but all I had to do was put the bowl of food in the carrier and in she went.

Chat, chat, chat all the way to the vet.  Turns out Checkers is a 2-3 year old female, unspayed, very sweet and friendly.  She will be spayed on Monday, that gives me time to frantically find her a foster home.

Checkers came to the right place, she is safe now!

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Shakira all grown up

I just got this lovely picture today from Tricia.  She offered to foster one of the kittens from the September big dump so sight unseen I took her Shakira, an adorable little grey and white female.  Both Tricia and Tricia's cat fell in love with Shakira, so she is a member of the family now.

I love getting pictures like this!  She has gotten so big, and clearly has a friend.

Steve called me Tuesday when he was feeding the colony to tell me he saw a new cat, a black and white one who did not seem feral.  Of course he was without carrier or trap, I only hope it sticks around and we see it again and can get it out of there.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Feral photos

Life goes on, and although every day I pray for the seniors to get adopted, I have a crowd at home to feed and of course the ferals too.  Seventeen cats depend on us to show up four times a week, thankfully Tory, Michelle, Pat and Linda are taking on the other days.  No day goes by that they don't get fed, even Christmas Day.  At this time of year I'm just grateful for any day above freezing.
MC in a feeding station out of the wind

Pseudo and Jet have taken over poor Stubby's spot.  Stubby was already scared, now they have chased him away, and we rarely see him but the food disappears so I think he is eating and running.  I wish they could all get along, there's lots of food.
The cats at Hank's

Arrow and Socks