Introducing “Fender” & “Massey” – “The Network Cats”
Fender’s Story by Dr. Jackie St.Cyr
While driving home one day, in 1996, I was paged by a friend who was going through a tough time emotionally so I pulled into the Chevron station at Hwy-290 and Pinemont. As we were speaking on the pay phone I kept hearing a faint “Meow, Meow” sound coming from somewhere near me.
When I ended my phone call, I realized that next to me there was a woman sitting in a Chevy Blazer with all of her windows rolled up, looking as though she was terrified. After some comforting, I was able to get her to open her window and tell me what was wrong. She informed me that she believed there was a cat under her hood and she had called a mechanic friend of hers to come and help her. This friend was coming from Waller, TX, 50 miles away, where she had just driven from. I had no idea how long she had already been sitting there, so I decided to try and help her. She was obviously very concerned about the cat.
When I suggested that we open the hood, she expressed fear that the cat might be mangled or seriously injured and she could not face seeing this. I didn’t think this was the case because I continued to hear the soft, gentle, “Meow!” The sound also led me to believe that this was a very small kitten.
Just as we raised the hood, her friend arrived. We could clearly hear the kitten, but we could not see it anywhere. It was now becoming dark outside and none of us had a flashlight; there wasn’t even one for us to buy! We were beginning to gather a crowd and one of the men had a small light on his keychain.
During all of the commotion, I spoke to the lady, whose name was Beverly, and I asked her what she would do with the kitten when we freed it. She said that she had no intention of keeping it and I could have it, if I wanted. I knew that if it was a black kitten, then it was MINE! I told Beverly this and said, “If it is a black kitten then it’s a God thing!” Just one week prior I had said that I was open to having a new kitten, a black kitten, in my life. About six months prior I lost of my cat of 8 years named “Shadow”. Shadow’s death came very unexpectedly after receiving too much anesthesia for a flea bath! Shocking! I was devastated!
Even when the soft mewing ceased, I just innately knew my “new black kitten” was going to be just fine. With the keychain light we found a small hole on the inside of the body of the vehicle, over the wheel. When the light was shone down into the hole, the kitten began to cry again and come towards the light. Someone shouted, “It’s coming out the bottom. Get it!” I slid under the Blazer, on my back, and caught him as he came out. He was so sweet and covered with black oil, which was now all over the front of my t-shirt, but that was alright with me. He was scared but miraculously did not appear to be injured in any way. When it became apparent that I was going to keep him, the people standing around asked what I’d name him. That was easy. I stated, “I will call him “Fender”. He rode 50 miles over the highway from Waller, TX, to this Chevron station, over the wheel (the fender) inside the body of that Chevy. He had to come a very long way to find me!”
I left with my little baby kitten in my arms and went to the home of my friend. After bathing Fender, we went to Fiesta, the only store open that late, to buy some kitten food and a litter box. Even though Fender was afraid to come too close to me for about a week, it was amazing what a ball with some string attached was able to do!
Fender has been my daily companion ever since his rescue and he has brought me great comfort during many healing moments in my life. Right now, Fender is enjoying his tough life as he stretches over the couch. He loves the people at the chiropractic center and he loves to “love on them!” He can be a bit feisty at times and will never hesitate to let you know if you annoy him. But, he also gives great hugs and loves to comfort anyone who is hurting. Fender delights in greeting clients at the front door, giving good “chin-bites”, eating wet food and protecting and loving his little sister, Massey!
Miss Massey’s Story by Misty Johnson
(You have to know my friend Misty to really get the humor here LOL, but this is a true story, Dr. Jackie)
As I drove home from work one moderately tempered afternoon, I decided to stop and buy some supplies that I needed to repair my tractor. Tractor Supply is on my way home and generally a good place to find farm supplies of all kinds.
As I walked in, I smelled the familiar aroma of livestock feed, rubber, pesticides and animal ointments. The wonderful aroma therapy I usually take home with me in my hair and clothes after a visit to Tractor Supply. There were few customers in the store moseying around in typical country-folk style, going from aisle to aisle, in no hurry. I gathered my goods and proceeded to the smiling cashier, who knew me by name, and checked out. With my goods rattling in a plastic bag, I spoke my farewells to the cashier and proceeded to the exit.
The first automatic sliding door opened with a heavy grinding as it moved along its tracks. I stepped on the activation pad to the second door and it opened with a sound unlike the grinding I had heard from the first door. As I stepped up to the second door’s threshold, a fuzzy trip hazard made its way in front of my feet followed by the most desperate “MEeeoowww” I have ever heard. The meow echoed inside the entry of the store and was vocalized, one right after another. The meows were those picturesque of a domestically raised animal seemingly trusting that humans understand its desperate cry of “help me please”.
I stopped and looked down at this very tiny and dirty fuzz ball and was in disbelief that such a strong cry could come from something so weak and pitiful looking. To be sure, that what I had presumed to be true was, I turned around and asked the cashier if this was anyone’s kitten. She said, “No, it’s just been hanging around here for a few days and shows up at the door every so often”. Well then, I thought to myself, I can’t deny that cry for help. I reached down and picked up a 4 ounce ball of bone, skin and fur and went back into the store. “Where is the cat food?” I asked, as I walked by the cashier. She pointed the direction and away I went. The thought never crossed my mind as to what in the world I was going to do with this kitten. I just knew it needed my help.
As we traveled 70 miles an hour down the freeway home, kitty munched away on Kitten Chow in the floorboard of the truck. As I neared my exit, kitty was finished with her groceries and meowed for something else. She became restless and moving around in the truck. By this time I was in my neighborhood, traveling slower, and enjoying the weather with the windows down. Kitty became so restless that I took her into my lap in an attempt to calm her. She calmed down immediately and became eerily quiet. An unpleasant aroma suddenly appeared and as I looked down at the kitty in my lap going 40 miles an hour down the road, I realized why she became so quiet. Fecal matter was not only in my lap, but it was also still making an exit from her bum. I grasped her by the scrape of the neck and held her out the window of the truck. We were still traveling approximately 40 miles per hour as she dangled from my grasp over the pavement. She never seemed concerned as she carried on with her business five feet in the air at 40 mph. Got to do what you’ve got to do when it’s necessary.
I finally arrived home, let excrement roll out of my lap as I got out of the truck and put kitty in a dog crate. Now comes the plan on what to do with this kitten. I can’t keep her as I have “cat killing” dogs and numerous birds that would be at risk. I smiled and thought to myself “my friend Jackie loves cats”.
I dialed Dr. Jackie’s number and she immediately knew something was up by the tone in my voice. “What’s up Misty Jean?” she said suspiciously. I could not even finish saying, “I found a kitt…”, before she said, “NO, Misty Jean!!” So, what I felt it best to do was work my charming magic on Jack’o, so that she would take this kitty and give her a home. In my conning tone of voice I said, “But Jack’o, she is a very special kitty rescued from Tractor Supply and needs a special loving home. She has a wonderful temperament and you will love her Jack’o!” Quite easily, Jackie gave in and agreed to take her and love her. Mr. Fender needed a buddy anyway.
A few days later, after the transfer to Jackie and the vet visit, Jackie called me to tell me Kitty had been given a clean bill of health. She asked, “What are we going to name her?” I said, “I don’t know, something tractor related maybe”. And then it just came to me, “Massey”, Jackie – name her Massey”. Jackie had that “deer in the headlights” response, wondering what the heck that had to do with tractors. I spoke up, laughing inside, and said, “Massey Ferguson is a model of tractor, so let’s name her Massey”. Actually her full name became “Massey Ferguson Ki-Kitty Johnson St.Cyr”.
………and that’s Miss Massey’s Story
You never know what special gifts life will drop into your lap at the most unexpected moments.