UPDATE 11:25am ET 8/25/13 - I can't believe I'm saying this.  But we're only $73 away from the $2K goal.  You guys are unbelievable.  Thank you so much.

UPDATE 9:43pm ET.  You guys took this from $80 to $1,512 raised against a $2,000 goal. Ah. Maze. Ing.  So please - can you give this another look and TWEET and SHARE this story so that we can get over the line this weekend?  It's SO appreciated!!

Ok. I admit it. I've been here a LOOOONG time.  Lately, however, my life and work schedule has precluded me from actually writing here.  I read here regularly, and drop a comment or two where I can and where I have time.  But writing?  Not so much.

If you're new-ish and we've not met, you can check my profile to know that I've been here a while and I'm not full of crap.  :)  If we've met, hopefully - even if you've disagreed with me, perhaps - you know that I'm not full of crap.  :)

So onto the ask and the story.  asimbagirl is in need of some help.  Her UID is in the four digits - she's been here forever.  You may know her from Top Comments (her most recent is here), or just from seeing her around in other diaries and comments.  I'm going to tell you a story of how I "know" her, outside of dKos.  Follow me over the fold.

I live on the east coast in the DC suburbs.  Asimbagirl is a So. Cal girl.  We've never actually met face to face, but we met on Daily Kos years ago after I joined.

As social media - and particularly Facebook - rose up to prominence, my Facebook friend list expanded to include those I "knew" here from Daily Kos.  This included asimbagirl.  We would occasionally chat or share comments on Facebook, share each other's political outrage, all of that stuff.

What I didn't know is that asimbagirl is an animal lover.  Lots of those here, I imagine, and I "know" a lot of them from Pootie diaries and whatnot.  But I digress.  So here's the first story I have to share - it's relatively short, but it's totally germane to asimbagirl's need for help.

Kitty Puff - Saved.
Sometime in 2010, I got back into rescue - big time.  My soft spot (and eventually my specialty) is senior and special needs cats.  Over the 12 months between July 2010 and July 2011, I amassed a really huge rescue network on Facebook.  Honestly - looking back, it's amazing to me how word gets out and how Facebook is instrumental in getting the word out with regard to rescue.  At any rate, I got a plea for a very senior, very sweet cat who had been surrendered at a kill shelter. She was at least 15 of 16 years old and her name was Kitty Puff.  I can't remember the exact details, but my mind is telling me that that Kitty Puff's owner had either died or been placed in a nursing facility, leaving Kitty Puff homeless and landing her at the shelter.

So a general comment related to the overall story: even the best county/state/town shelter is a bad place.  It's terrifying - and the smell of fear and death pervades it.  When you're a cat, and your sense of smell is so excruciatingly acute, you are constantly surrounded by that fear and death.  In addition, illness runs through a shelter even if that shelter tries very, very hard to prevent its spread.  We refer to them as URIs - kitty colds.  Some are mild and some are severe and deadly.  When you're a senior cat, used to a home and the care and safety that home provides, you are terribly, horribly susceptible to these URIs, and what's mild for a younger cat can be deadly for you.

So yeah.  Kitty Puff was in a bad way.  

Kitty Puff - very loved.
Because in addition to what I've outlined above, county/state/town shelters (with very few exceptions) kill animals to make space for the new animals coming in that they have to accept.  First on the list is any animal that is owner surrendered - they don't have a mandatory stray hold.  Next on the list is any animal who otherwise has something that makes them less adoptable, like they're a senior animal or they have a kitty cold or they have some other condition.  They're the first to be killed - trust me on this.

So I put an urgent Facebook plea out for Kitty Puff and I tagged rescuers that I knew to be somewhere in the area and I begged and pleaded that people share that picture and get that sweet senior girl OUT of that place.

And miraculously, asimbagirl saw it and she went to that shelter and she adopted Kitty Puff and saved her from death.  Asimbagirl sadly lost her sweet Kitty Puff earlier this year to cancer, but only after giving her a great and loving home and saving her from an anonymous, scary, uncaring death.

But that's not the end of the story of asimbagirl.  Some of you know that I adopted a wonderful senior cat, Clide, from an area kill shelter and that he was diabetic. As a result, I got involved with Diabetic Cats in Need (DCIN), a 501c3 nonprofit that helps diabetic cats and their owners nationwide.  Sometime last year (2012), DCIN posted an urgent plea for a beautiful all white boy named Snow who had been surrendered to a San Francisco area kill shelter.  I watched the pleas for Snow over the days and shared him on my page, tagging CA-area folks as I went.

Time kept ticking down for Snow and no one stepped forward for him.  Snow was, quite literally, on his last day at the shelter.  No rescue, no adopter, and Snow would be killed.  But asimbagirl stepped forward for Snow.  She had no experience with diabetic cats, but trusted the resources DCIN could bring to help her help Snow through all of this.  A herculean effort was mounted to get Snow from San Francisco down to So. Cal to the loving home and arms of asimbagirl and her family, and that's where he remains - ADORED - to this day.

And even THAT is not the end of the story.  After losing Kitty Puff, another diabetic cat, Charlie, came onto DCIN's radar.  Charlie lived in Pennsylvania.  Although that's a long way from So. Cal, DCIN doesn't let distance deter a great home.  The only missing piece was finding that great home.

Charlie - another saved!
And yes, you guessed it - asimbagirl stepped forward for diabetic Charlie. Charlie flew across the country a bit more than a month ago and is getting loved and treated by asimbagirl and her family.

I guess you'll have to take my word for it how very difficult and heartbreaking it is to try to find a home for a senior cat, let alone one with special needs.  Having asimbagirl step forward for these three great cats as well as all the other cats she's loved and lost renewed my faith in humanity - and trust me - it's been sorely lacking lately.  She's one of the good guys, no doubt.  

Now, she's been managing all of this, financially, without needing any assistance. But she recently got double-whammied.  Her mortgage is going up, AND it was determined that Snow needs rather extensive dental surgery.  She's been to her vet for an estimate, and Snow will need about 13 teeth extracted and the others cleaned.  Attending these dental issues is imperative in cats: it can help stave off other life-threatening issues, let alone allow for continued comfortable living and eating. And in a diabetic cat, having needed extractions can allow the cat to go fully off of insulin once they have recovered from the surgery.  Snow remains insulin dependent, and we are so hopeful that attending these dental issues will allow him to become fully diet controlled.

As I mentioned, Diabetic Cats in Need is a 501c3 nonprofit.  They are running the fundraiser for Snow's dental work.  As a result, any donation that is made is fully tax deductible.  At the provided link, the tax ID is given so that you can properly deduct any amount you can donate.  No amount is too small!! The estimate for Snow's dental surgery - with required pre-surgical bloodwork - is a whopping $2,000.  Which, frankly, with all of those extractions, is not unreasonable and asimbagirl's vet is not unreasonably priced.  

Can you help??  I don't usually ask for stuff like this here - I think it's been more than three years since I've done such a huge fundraiser.  But asimbagirl - and the cats in her care - truly do deserve any assistance we can provide. She's stepped up for so many.  You know about the three cats she saved where I was directly involved.  She also contacted me a few months ago about a dear friend of hers who had a kitty, Twinkle, who had a tumor that needed to be removed to save her life.  I orchestrated that fundraiser, and asimbagirl was its very first donor.  She steps up for those who need help, human and otherwise.  And by the way - Twinkle got her surgery and the tumor was successfully removed and she's back home again, being loved and doted on by her people.

Give it up for Snow!!  DONATE.

If you want to know more about Diabetic Cats in Need, you can find information here.

As always, thank you for reading.

Originally posted to RenaRF's Random Ramblings on Sat Aug 24, 2013 at 11:47 AM PDT.

Also republished by PWB Peeps and Community Fundraisers.

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