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Thomasina - An Amazing Rescue Story

Posted by Harry Shubin on

There are many cats on the streets.  This is the story of one of them.  The names have not been changed to protect the innocent.  That way, in a few months when Thomasina and her kittens are available for adoption, you'll be able to find them on the FFGW website.

Thomasina was on the streets.  A kind soul was feeding Thomasina, trying to gain the trust of the wary, street-wise cat, whose belly grew with a soon-to-be litter of kittens.  And then,Thomasina disappeared.When Thomasina reappeared three days later, she was skinny and starving, and it was clear that she had had her kittens - but where?  Our volunteer tracked her, up alleys and across yards, until she found the kittens, but they were under the porch of a house with a dog, and the owners had called animal control.  Thomasina wasn't interested in the animal control officer's traps, as our volunteer had fed her a rotisserie chicken for Easter dinner the night before! The next part of our story is best told in a letter to the City of Alexandria, written by our volunteer:

I want to make you aware of the recent heroic rescue of a stray mother cat and her five kittens by the Alexandria Animal Control Staff. Thomasina was a stray and had babies and we didn't know where she stashed them. Officer Howes of Alexandria Animal Control came to our assistance when they were initially located. The kittens were only about a week old, and his arms were long enough to reach under the house and grab three of them....While he left to take the initial three babies to the Animal Welfare League, the frightened mother cat moved the remaining two onto a different hiding place. The Feline Foundation of Greater Washington (FFGW) was overseeing this and Laura Goodman, the President of FFGW was on the phone with Officer Howes during the rescue operation. According to Ms. Goodman,  "I was so impressed by his refusal to trap Thomasina while the two babies were still out there!" With assistance from some of the neighbors, Officer Howes was able to locate the remaining two kittens that afternoon, and by evening, another neighbor lured the mother cat into a carrier. Even though it was 7:30 p.m. by then and nearing the end of his shift at 8 p.m. Officer Howes drove over to pick up the mother so she could be reunited with her kittens before the shelter closed for the evening. In six days Thomasina and her entire brood will be transferred to a FFGW volunteer, who will foster the entire family until they are all placed in loving homes.

We all just want to express our deepest appreciation for Officer Howes: His professionalism, expertise, and the empathy for the helpless little creatures which he enabled us to save....

Thomasina and her kittens are safely in an FFGW foster home tonight (working quickly, our volunteer had recruited a foster home while she was working on gaining a pregnant Thomasina's trust, and we had quickly processed their application!). Remarkably, now that she is safe, Thomasina is incredibly friendly, and has even bonded with the foster's dog!  


These cases were among the calls reported recently by the Animal Welfare League of Alexandria, which provides animal control services to the city.

Reunion: Cedar St. W., unit block, March 28. An officer took a litter of kittens found underneath a residence to the shelter. Their mother was found and taken to the shelter.

And now you know... the rest of the story!

You won't want to miss the heartwarming video of Thomasina when she was reunited with her kittens in the shelter!

Thomasina Reunion Video 



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