Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Can You Read This Face?

Can You Read This Face?
Originally uploaded by rikkis_refuge
You can't please everyone!

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Candy Erhard, Rikki's Super Shopper

and the creator and coordinator of the Puppy Pals program. As a Super Shopper, Candy looks forward to getting your coupons in the mail, finding the best deals in town, and buying the delicious treats for Rikki's at super discounts. Her Puppy Pals program allows you to feed the dogs of Doggy Downs one day a month, on your chosen day. All you have to do is sign up for a monthly withdrawal from your credit card, Candy and the team at Rikki's do all the rest for you! Buy it, open it, wash the bowl, serve it, wash the bowl, and even clean up to poop!! If you'd like to sign up to sponsor the dogs one day a month for only $15 contact Candy at paul-candy@starpower.net.

Christmas Kitty Quilt Raffle

When Candy was visiting her mom, one of her mom's quilting friends came over to show off some of her latest quilts. Candy thought they were beautiful, and had only one suggestion for making them even better. Why not make one with cats on it? The next time she was visiting, she was presented with this beautiful quilt, to be raffled off to raise money for Rikki's Refuge.

The raffle will be held February 2 at 4:30 p.m. at Rikki's Refuge. You do not need to be present to win. Tickets are only one dollar!! Or, says Super Shopper Candy, six tickets for five dollars! You can pay by cash, check, credit card or PayPal. We need your name and telephone number, and must have your entry in no later than noon on February 2.

This lovely quilt would make a beautiful addition around your home, a fabulous Christmas gift for a cat loving friend, or .... shhhhhhh .... keep this one a secret, but if you're a dog lover and have no need for a cat quilt, or would just like to do something really wonderful for our Super Shopper Candy - buy a ticket in her name. She absolutely loves this quilt, and really, really, really would like to be the winner !!!!!

You can contact me, Kerry@RikkisRefuge.org or Candy paul-candy@starpower.net, or buy your ticket through PayPal mail@RikkisRefuge.org, or by USPS Rikki's Refuge, PO Box 1357, Orange VA 22960 or in person at our January 27th 1 pm Tour.

Here's a Close-Up of One Square

Isn't it beautiful? Can't you think of a thousand places in your home you'd like to see this beautiful quilt?

And Here's the Back

And Here's the Back
Originally uploaded by rikkis_refuge
so you can flip it over, when your dog loving friends come to visit!

Slinky Disappointed, says Santa Cheated

You should have seen the look of disappointment on his face when he woke up Christmas morning to discover Santa had brought him his very own car! "Car?, Car?" said the sixteen year old, "I wanted a mouse!" I can't eat this thing! But Vincent was quick to console him, "I know where Kerry leaves her credit cards at night. You study up and get your license. I'm sure we can find an all-night cat food store!" "Cat food? Cat food?" said Slinky, "How about a pet store full of mice!"

Gloria Gets the Gift of her Dreams

With her new magic carpet and her very own magic wand, Gloria is off to make the world a safer place for all the cats of this planet ... and beyond !!!

Young and Old

Young and Old
Originally uploaded by rikkis_refuge
The young and the old share space in the 9th Life Retirement, Assisted Living and Psychiatric Center. Two year old Lilly often comes to work with her grandma, Lena. She's not allowed to help dispense meds to the folks in the 9th Life Retirement, Assisted Living and Psychiatric Center, so she spends her time sketching portraits. Hazel, one of our oldest residents, has become her best friend and loves to watch over her shoulder.

Meet Jan Chetnik

Meet Jan Chetnik
Originally uploaded by rikkis_refuge
Jan wears many hats at Rikki's Refuge. As our Public Relations Director and the Team Leader of the Jan Kerri Jean PR Machine she heads up the advertising about our Open Houses, Tours and other events and has been majorly instrumental in enlarging the spotlight on Rikki's Refuge. After all, if you've never heard of Rikki's, you won't be helping us to support the animals.

As our Educational Director she administers the Kind News program, reaching out to classrooms across the nation and the world. Raising the funds to send subscriptions to Kind News, an outstanding monthly Humane Education Magazine. It's only $35 a year to sponsor a classroom. Have a favorite teacher or just want to help a classroom of Jan's choice? Make your $35 donation for education and you can sponsor a whole class room of kids for a full year. We can only make a difference one child at a time. Teach a little kindness to a young one and they have a lifetime to spread it around.

As our Director of Prayers and Goodwill and Warm 'n' Fuzzy Things she keeps the miracles happening and things flowing smoothly at the Refuge. If you don't believe in prayer - just ask Jan to pray for you!!! Let me tell you - it works every time! Thank you Jan !!! At Rikki's Refuge we no longer just believe in miracles - we have come to rely on them.

Jan is also the one you'll meet on a Tour of the Refuge or at an Open House. These events are held once a month and Jan, our Tour Director, is the one who puts them together and pulls them off beautifully. She's that tall dark gorgeous brunette in the Rikki's T and Cap just brimming with excitement to introduce you to all the wonderful critters at Rikki's. Don't miss her next tour January 27th at 1 pm.

Jan hosts either a Tour or an Open House each month at Rikki's Refuge.

There will be 4 Open Houses during 2008. Each time we will be open for four hours with tours leaving every half hour. These events are often filled with special events like nature hikes, magicians (I keep begging for the "Watch the Poop Disappear" trick, but nobody has perfected it yet), artists, bake sales, crafts. You're welcome to come any time during an Open House, and all animal visitation is with tour guides.

The other 8 months of the year feature Tours. Tours last about 2 hours. And there's only one! So be prompt and don't hold up the group!

Sponsor Appreciation Day / Spring into Animals, Sunday 4/27 from 12-4 pm
Summer with the Animals, Sunday 6/15 from 12-4 pm
Halloween with the Animals, Sunday 10/19
Fall in Love with the Animals, Saturday 11/15 11 am - 3 pm

Sunday 1/27 1 pm
Sunday 2/24 1 pm
Sunday 3/30 1 pm
Sunday 5/18 1 pm
Friday 7/4 11 am
Sunday 8/17 11 am
Monday 9/1 12 pm
Thursday 12/25 12 pm

Learn to be a Tour Guide so you can help out at events or give special private tours. Contact Jan for training info: jeanne.chetnik@usmc.mil

Participants will gather at the Gift Shoppe and the tour will leave promptly at 1 pm. The gates will open at 12:30. Please be on time as we cannot accommodate late arrivals.

On a tour you can meet the Cows of Bovine Boulevard, the Goats of Capri Corners, the Guinea Pigs of Cavy Castle, the Chickens of Chicken City, the Chukars of Chukar Chalet, the Dogs of Doggy Downs, the Donkeys of Donkey Dale, the Ducks of Ducky Digs, the Emus of Emu Estates, the Cats of Feline Fields, the Cats, Dogs and Rabbits of the 9th Life Retirement, Assisted Living and Psychiatric Center, the Geese of Goosey Gardens, the Guinea Fowl of Guinea Fowl Grounds, the Horses of Horsey Haven, the Mules of Jackass Junction, the Peacocks of Peacock Prowls, the Pheasants of Pheasant Phacility, the Pigeons of Pigeon Palace, the Pigs of Piggy Paradise, the Rabbits of Rabbit Rotunda, the Roosters of Rooster Rounds, the Sheep of Ramsey Residence, the Turkeys of Turkey Terrace and who ever else is staying with us at the time.

You will get to interact with the friendly cats and dogs, feed the pigs (bring apples) and sheep and goats and rabbits (bring carrots) and learn the story of why Rikki's is here and where we are going. You will see what day-to-day life is like at the refuge and you will also be invited to join in our volunteer efforts to build new housing for new animals.

Tours run about two hours and you should wear waterproof shoes, old clothes, long pants, sun lotion, hats, etc; dress for the weather as it's all outdoors and you will get wet, muddy and slobbered on! Warning - lots of prickles and hooves so sandals and shorts aren't recommended. Visit our Gift Shoppe for Official Rikki’s Wear and all kinds of wonderful unique crafts. Bring your camera, you'll get great shots of the excited animals thrilled by your attention.

Admission Donation is one can of cat or dog food per person (please be as generous as most folks and bring a case). We’re sorry, but we must ask that you leave your pets at home, our mascots aren't used to visiting animals and we don’t want a tangle. Children must be supervised by their parent or guardian (no more than 4 under the age of 10 per adult). Remember: animals have built in weaponry (horns, hooves, fangs, claws) which they can and will use, sometimes without warning, so enter at your own risk. Parent or guardian must sign for minors.

Can You Read This Face?

Can You Read This Face?
Originally uploaded by rikkis_refuge
Cute? Think he'll purr for you? If you guessed wrong, you'd be bleeding right about now. This is one furious feral cat. About to be captured for his second "processing". He didn't enjoy the first and doesn't intend to submit to the second. When Lena tells her patients, "This is going to hurt me more than it hurts you", she's for real. A lot more human blood is lost in our hospital than critter blood !!!!

Cat Processing 101

Cat Processing 101
Originally uploaded by rikkis_refuge
All animals are processed thru a minimum of a two week quarantine when they come to Rikki's. We cannot risk any of our residents catching something from "the outside world". Our residents are our first concern. When a new resident joins us they go into quarantine. In the case of cats, it's usually two weeks, unless there are "issues". Like persistent worms, a bad case of ear mites, they get sick during their two weeks or they need additional veterinarian work like neutering or spaying or a current rabies vaccination or a dental.

We have an extensive parasite prevention program because we simply cannot afford to have all of our animals infected by parasites brought in by one animal. An otherwise healthy and "ready to go" cat receives two preventative parasite treatments as well as a physical and any needed vaccinations. They are treated for fleas and ticks, ear mites, mange mites, a whole host of possible internal parasites and given vaccinations. The typical cat will have his or her ears cleaned and mite prevention dripped in. They will receive a capsule of worming meds and 2 cc of liquid worming meds. They get an injection for mites and other parasites and one for distemper and those other nasty things. Then they get flea drops. If they didn't come with a current rabies certificate or it's due to expire soon, they also get a trip to the vet to update that. A full exam includes various body orifices being poked and prodded, otoscope in ears, thermometers in unpleasant places, eyes examined, mouth pried and held open so teeth can be examined - visually we hope but all too often with the ferals we get to feel first hand how well those teeth are working - stethoscope pressed against chest and abdomen, nails clipped - often after being extracted from human flesh.

And two weeks later it's all repeated. And if all looks well at that time they get to move into their new cat house. We have 8 temporary pens for cat quarantine that can hold up to six cats each. Some will have to be quarantined in cages in our hospital. When a family comes in together we prefer to keep them together in a temp pen than in individual cages. it's much more homey and much less scary. Lots of kitties who've come to Rikki's in the last 8 months thank Ron for the temp pens.

These kitties have been captured in their temp pens and brought up to the hospital for "processing".

Going Home

Going Home
Originally uploaded by rikkis_refuge
After their scary adventure they are loaded up to go back home. Unfortunately these guys just finished their second processing but are still having some ear problems. They'll have to wait another two weeks to see if they can pass the test next time.

Imagine what a feral cat must think. Either it walks into a trap and the door slams shut. Or it's hunted down and netted. hauled away in a heretofore unknown conveyance and deposited on an operating table under bright lights. Body orifices are poked and prodded, just like they say in all the testimonies, sometimes they pass out and wake up missing some parts or with scars on their bellies. Then they are returned home. Just like you've seen on the X-Files.

Kenny Loves to Listen to Folks

telling him how to do his job. Why don't you build a fence nobody can ever escape from? Why do you allow them to poop on the floor? Why do you allow the chickens to clog the gutters with eggs? Why don't you .... Why don't you .... Why don't you .... Why don't you .... So he hung up a Suggestion Box !!!