An Abandoned House That 10 Ferals Call Home Is Up for Demolition; Volunteers Worry About the Cats They Can’t Find

Two and a half years ago, authorities found an elderly couple living in a truck on a property in Bridgeport Avenue in Shelton, Conn. Judging from the reports, it sounds like it might have been a hoarding situation. Although there was a house on the property, the couple weren’t living there: it was vacant and filled with trash … and dozens of cats.

Back then, the city’s animal control officer called Compassion for Cats, a Shelton-based rescue group, to help deal with the cats scrounging out an existence there. Irene McCoy was one of the people on the scene: She and a group of volunteers began taking the cats to be spayed or neutered and vaccinated.

Most of the cats were sociable enough to find foster homes and, eventually, loving families to call their own, but a number of them were feral — or, as McCoy refers to them, “very shy.” Because the property was their home, they were returned there after they’d been thoroughly vetted.

McCoy and another volunteer have been feeding and caring for those cats since 2009 — with the property owner’s permission — and they hadn’t had any issues.

But a few days ago when they came for a visit, they found that the house and garage had been marked for demolition.

Fearing for the cats’ lives, the women have sprung into action. They’re busy trying to catch the 10 remaining felines and find them foster or adoptive homes.

It’s a tough situation, trying to catch and relocate feral cats, as the folks at CARE Feline TNR could tell you. They’ve been working to rehome the community cats that had been living on three Loews Hotel properties in Orlando, Florida, since they found out that the hotels’ management had decided to evict its cat colonies due to fears (based on scientifically unsound “research,” mind you) about the cats’ alleged threat to hotel guests.

Anyway, back to Connecticut: McCoy says she is “heartbroken about [the cats’] future … My fear is that they will be bulldozed down if they run into the house for shelter.”

Compassion for Cats doesn’t have room for the cats living on the Sheldon property, and McCoy says the city doesn’t take cats.

Maybe we Catsters can help find a place for them to go. If you have any ideas or if you want to know how you can help, call Compassion for Cats at (203) 929-7909.

Win a Kitty Cradle Cat Hammock for Your Cat!

If you have cat beds lying all over your house, today’s giveaway is the perfect one for you! It’s a Kitty Cradle Cat Hammock — a hammock for your cat that straps to the legs of any chair and fits right underneath it.

Part hiding spot, part cat bed, the Kitty Cradle looks like it’s sure to be the cats’ meow! Plus, here’s something that makes this even more special today: Catster readers are getting a chance to win one before they even go on sale

The Kitty Cradle won’t be officially available until late summer, so this is a unique sneak peek at what we’re sure will be a big hit. One lucky Catster reader will get to win a blue Kitty Cradle Cat Hammock (they’ll come in different colors when they go on sale) — and we can even ship to international readers for this one!

The Kitty Cradle has straps that wrap around the legs of any chair (of course you need a chair with legs … not a recliner or something like that, sillies), and voila! Instant, non-cluttering, comfy cat bed.

If you want to get an alert when they’re officially available, you can sign up on the Kitty Cradle web site. And the company told us that if you like their Facebook page, they’ll be doing even more giveaways and special offers leading up to the official launch day. Yay for more free and fun stuff for you cat!

HOW TO ENTER

To enter to win, simply leave us a comment here saying you’d like to win. (Make sure we have your e-mail address so we can contact you.) All entries must be received by Wednesday, May 2, 2012, at midnight Pacific. We can ship this prize anywhere internationally! Once we contact the winner, you have two days to respond, or we’ll pick another winner. Sorry, you snooze you (and your kitty) lose!

P.S. Congrats to the winner of last’s week’s Crazy Cat Lady cuff bracelet giveaway, Jasmine! And don’t forget that Catster readers get 10 percent off in her shop on any of her creations when you use code CATSTER at checkout!

Viral Video We Love: “10 Cutest Cat Moments” Is Pure Catnip

Ever wish you could watch all of the cutest cat videos in the world in one place? You do? We do, too!

So we’re glad that someone’s compiled the ten cutest cat moments into one video for our viewing and inappropriate workplace-giggling pleasure.

The compilation includes synchronized kittens bobbing their heads to techno, two talking cats, an adorably sleepy kitty, and a calico dueling a printer.

Did you see any of your favorites?

The Pitter Patter of Charlotte Olympia’s Cat-Faced Flats

Charlotte Olympia created the “It” cat shoe of 2011 with her collection of feline-inspired flats, heels, and platforms that sold out in stores.

They graced the soles of fashion-savvy starlets such as Beyoncé, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Katy Perry. 

Just in time for summer, Olympia has refreshed the blood reds and leopard prints of last year’s collection with a velvet skimmer in cool shades of black, blue, and pink. While the cat flat still features the same signature embroidered feline face and pointed ears, she has added grosgrain trim and yarn embroidery to give an updated espadrille look. 

The shoes, which are handcrafted in Italy and come with a handy Polaroid to help keep track of them in your closet, are selling out quickly through the designer’s website, despite their hefty pricetag. While feline fashionistas may have had their paws crossed that the lighter look would lead to softer pricing, Neiman Marcus is currently stocking the Capri kitties at $845 a pair! 

Vote for Bublik, the Russian Kitten Candidate!

With the collapse of the USSR, the world opened up for Russia and the numerous small republics and satellite nations that had been assimilated into the Soviet machine. Lots of people expected Western influence to land with a resounding boom, but nobody expected that influence would become so pervasive that cats would run for political office.

Until now.

When Bublik heard about Hank the Cat’s candidacy for a U.S. Senate seat, he decided to launch himself into the Russian political fracas.

Bublik, a 3-month-old Siamese look-alike whose name roughly translates to “bagel” in English, threw his hat in the ring for a seat in the Sverdlovsk Oblast, a region located on the eastern slopes of the Ural Mountains.

The cat’s press secretary, Ivan Kolotovkin, announced Bublik’s campaign earlier this week on Facebook and on the Russian social networking site Vkontakte.

Kolotovkin says that while Bublik hasn’t fully formulated his platform beyond an antineutering stance and the demand for lower cat food prices, he will continue to study the political environment and get input from his supporters to ensure that his campaign appeals to humans as well as to cats.

Bublik’s campaign slogan is “For a Fun Future!”

The cat plans to start his career with a run for a seat in the March 2013 legislative elections in Yekaterinburg, a city of 1.4 million people that serves as the unofficial capital of the Ural Federal District.

Kolotovkin says Bublik plans to write to Hank to express support and willingness to cooperate. Just goes to show that international diplomacy is important in the feline politisphere, too.

What makes Kolotovkin so sure that Bublik has a good chance for victory?

“[Bublik is] the best because he’s the only politician who gives no promises,” he said.

What We’re Obsessed With: The Limited-Edition Leopard-Print Bike from Dolce & Gabbana

Dolce & Gabbana takes a ride on the wild side with this leopard-print bicycle!

The limited-edition cruiser, dubbed the Animalier Bike, is part of the D&G Spring/Summer 2012 collection, and showcases the fashion flair people have come to expect from the name.

An homage to vintage bikes, the Animalier features gold gilt components, a luxurious leather seat, and a bike bell embellished with the D&G logo.

It’s sure to turn heads when you go pedaling down the street on it. That’s if you’ve got a few (hundred) bucks to spare!

Story and images via 2LUXURY2