A Southern California dog rescue organization has garnered world-wide fame for producing videos of the dogs they save from streets of Los Angeles. They often delve into low places to lift stray pooches out of their squalor and give them a new life.
The rescuers at Hope for Paws occasionally get calls about other animals besides dogs, too, such as cats, rabbits, or even fowl—and their passion for saving living creatures makes it hard for them to say no.
There was one such case not so long ago when Hope For Paws rescuers Lisa Arturo and JoAnn Wiltz got a call of a litter of feral cats that had been thrown into a dumpster in an industrial park. It was hoped that the team could locate them, gather them up, and find a real home for them.
When they showed up on the scene in their SUV, they spotted the large, blue dumpster behind an industrial building, and it was clear from the height of the opening that the kittens could not have gotten in there by themselves.
It wasn’t a filthy dumpster (thankfully) but was filled with industrial packaging waste, a labyrinth of wooden skits, boxes, and stretch-wrap where the kitties could be hiding. They could hear them mewing from somewhere inside. Catching them would be another story.
“The container’s getting picked up tomorrow,” said Arturo. “There’s going to be a lid that’s put on this, and then everything in it, all of the contents in this container gets crushed. So, the kittens are not going to survive.”
They would have to see to it that that didn’t happen.
Quickly, they straddled the lip of the container and lifted a wire cage inside with them. They quickly located one black kitten and lifted it into the cage.
There turned out to be three black kittens in all inside the dumpster. The other two they eventually located amidst the jumble of wood, plastic, and cardboard and managed to lure them into the cage with food. Soon, thankfully, all were safe and sound.
“You’re going to thank us later, Mister,” Arturo playfully told one cat that was hissing fearfully from inside the cage. “The dumpster’s no place to be.”
The two rescuers named the trio rather creatively, Salmon, Squid, and Sardine, and the three siblings were eventually brought to Room8Cats where there they would have a promising life ahead, with food, shelter, and plenty of toys to play with, but would still need some kind soul to adopt them.
Room8Cats is a no-kill cat shelter started by a California woman, who once cared for cats in her own home, who was affectionately known as the “Cat Lady.” Upon her passing, in 1996, all of her estate was literally speaking “left to the cats” to ensure that they would still have a place to live. They are dedicated to providing care and shelter, and finding successful, loving adoptions, for homeless domestic cats.