Beth, How wonderful you are. I had a similar but happier experience. I was
known in my city as a rescuer and am on the Board of an animal rights
organization. However, I surrendered many cats to the Humane Society, a
supposedly no-kill shelter in San Antonio, Tx. Whenever I filled out the
surrender form, I always added that the cat must be returned to me for any
reason at any time, whether it was FIV or FeLv or some other situation that
made the cat unadoptable. I put it all over the form, told the intake people
and they agreed. I knew that they killed FIV+ and FeLv+ cats without asking
questions. Most people don't realize this or just don't care as long as they
can tell themselves that they did their best for the cat. In addition, the HS
allows anyone to visit with the cats in visitation rooms, small cubicles with
cat toys where the cats can be handled and potential adopters can get to know
them. This shelter is better than most
because their intake form does have a place to state that the people
surrendering the cat can have him/her back in case of something that makes the
cat unadoptable. Anyway, one evening the supervising intake person called me.
She was near tears. I hadn't surrendered any cats so I wondered what was
wrong. She said that they had gotten in two young, gorgeous cats who had
tested FIV+ and she was ordered to have them euthanized the next day. She
asked me if I would foster, since she knew I did not euthanize FIV+ cats. I
had none at the time, but I had about 20 other cats. So I told her that if she
took the two cats who were occupying my spare room at that time and who tested
negative for everything, were already fixed and had their rabies shots I would
take the FIV+ cats. The exchange was made before the shelter opened the next
day. This was entirely against the rules but no one complained. I got Sugar
Plum Fairy, a lovely blue-eyed
white cat who was NOT deaf and Sir Walter, a husky, healthy tabby and white
boy. Both were fixed and had their rabies shots. That was about 7 years ago.
I named the white one Sugar Plum Fairy and the tabby and white Sir Walter
because he looked regal. Sugar Plum Fairy is still with me along with 4 other
FIV+ cats who live in separate quarters from my main group. Sir Walter passed
a month ago from kidney cancer. Up until a month before he passed, he was a
happy, overweight puss with an attitude. Sugar is fine because she has other
companions. I also have two FIV+ cats mixed in with my main group because they
are lay back non-fighters who get along with everyone. No kill shelters are
becoming much more aware that FIV and FeLv do not have to be a death sentence
for cats surrendered to them. It's so awful that Alev had such a painful
experience. This used to be the norm in this country but things are slowly
changing. We always have to
speak up for the cats and make sure that we have an understanding when we
surrender one to a shelter that they will return the cat if anything is wrong.
Get it in writing and call frequently, visit frequently if you can to see how
your cat is doing. The two who were exchanged for Sugar and Wally got adopted
within two weeks of arriving at the shelter. FIV is not contagious unless the
cats get into a major biting and fighting situation. Most FIV+ cats who are
neutered do not bite and fight since this is behavior during mating season.
However, the five cats I have in my special FIV section exhibited some left
over hostility tendencies from their pre-neuter days. That's why they are
separate from my main group. The two who are mixed in never exhibited even a
hiss at anyone.
Spay and Neuter your cats and dogs and your weird relatives and nasty neighbors
From: Beth <create_me_...@yahoo.com>
To: FeLV Talk <Felvtalk@felineleukemia.org>
Sent: Tuesday, October 16, 2012 10:48 AM
Subject: Re: [Felvtalk] "No-kill" animal shelter killing FeLV+ cat
I'm so sorry you had this experience. Unfortunately many "no-kill" shelters are
really not totally no-kill - they do euthanize for FeLV & FIV, usually because
they have no place to house/foster the positive cats.
It is routine for shelters to make you sign all rights over to them. It usually
will say in that ppw that they euthanize for FeLV & FIV.
It is also normal for you to have to go through the same adoption process as
anyone else even if you were the one surrendering the animal.
It is crazy, though, that they would not call you & give you the chance to take
the cat back or permanently foster her. However, their reasoning might have
been that the cat had been outside & they were afraid you may re-release her
with a contagious virus.
I had this happen with an FIV+ cat when I 1st moved into my neighborhood. I
found the cat & he was injured. I already had 5 cats & could not take another,
so I took him to a local emergency vet that had an "injured stray" program.
They took in donations for injured strays & then adopted them out. When I
called back to find out how he was they said he tested positive for FIV & they
were going to euthanize him. I begged them to give me time to find someone to
take him - I had a friend with an FIV+ cat. Unfortunately she could not take
him. So I called the vet & said I would take him back. They then said NO - They
could not trust that I would not let him outside again & he was contagious. I
pleaded with them to wait for my vet's office to open the next day & have her
vouch for me (they knew my vet well). She did & I was able to pick him up. He
lived 10 healthy years with me.
BTW our shelter does NOT euthanize for FeLV or FIV. I foster FeLV cats for them
& we actually rent a house for the FIV cats to live in.
You can see the FIV cat's FB page here:
Don't Litter, Fix Your Critter! www.Furkids.org
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