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Tiny kitten rescued in Truro battles health issues

Gideon looks good today. The kitten, who was born in a feral colony, was extremely sick when he was picked up by Wayward Cats. Lynn Curwin/Truro Daily News
Gideon looks good today. The kitten, who was born in a feral colony, was extremely sick when he was picked up by Wayward Cats. Lynn Curwin/Truro Daily News

TRURO, N.S. – Gideon was covered in fleas, had a belly full of worms, was having difficulty breathing and was scalded by diarrhea when he was found.

While trapping feral felines, Wayward Cats caught Gideon and her three littermates. Although they were all suffering from health problems, the small black and white kitten was the sickest.

“I’ve seen sick kittens before but not one that was so sick and had so much fight,” said Heather Stevenson, a volunteer with Wayward Cats. “Her skin was raw and infected from diarrhea, and her back end was so swollen we didn’t know she was a female until the second week. She was in a lot of pain.”

Gideon had so many fleas that during her first bath her white hair was coloured red from flea dirt and blood.

About three days after the kitten arrived at Stevenson’s house she found her lying still, and thought she had died. Discovering the kitten was still alive she hurried to the vet with her.

“At that time the vet said she was borderline and whether she survived was up to her,” she said. “She fought back and made it.

“She’s playing with the others now and the hair has grown back on her belly and feet. We think she’ll be ready for her first vaccines next week.”

Two litters of kittens with health issues were caught around the same time – the vet bill for their care reaching about $3,000 – and any donations to help cover the costs of their care would be appreciated. Donations can be dropped off at Truro Veterinary Hospital or by e-transfer to .

Gideon and the other kittens will be available for adoption after Christmas.

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Wayward Cats surpasses lofty goal

TRURO, N.S. – Sarah MacLean set a goal to trap 365 cats during 2017, and she reached that number with a month to spare.

MacLean, a volunteer with Wayward Cats, traps cats and takes them to a vet to be spayed or neutered. The cats are returned to the original location if they’re wanted, or relocated to barn homes.

“We reached the goal 32 days early but we’re still going,” she said. “There are probably always more than 100 on the waiting list so as long as we can raise the money we’ll keep going. We could catch 50 a week if we had the money.”

She said people who don’t have a lot of money are often feeding outdoor cats so having the population controlled helps them a lot. People often enjoy having cats around; they just don’t want them to multiply.

“A lot of cats are former pets who people abandoned when they’re moving, or the cat is the right age to breed. They just thrown them out and expect someone else to care for them.”

The cats that aren’t feral are placed in homes, and there are currently a few available for adoption.

Wayward Cats is happy to hear from anyone willing to give a barn home to a feral cat, or anyone willing to donate cat food (or money). Volunteers are also happy to provide small outdoor cat shelters to people caring for ferals around their home.

The group holds fundraisers throughout the year, and currently has a table at the Truro Mall Thursday to Saturday.

“It’s a vicious cycle but we’re making a dent,” said MacLean.

The group has now trapped and provided care for 370 cats this year.

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