A note about The Cuddlywumps Chronicles

This blog is written and maintained by Miss Cuddlywumps, a fluffy-tailed calico cat who is both classically educated and familiar with mysteries. She receives creative input from the Real Cats and clerical assistance from She of Little Talent (old SoLT, a.k.a. Roby Sweet). Comments or complaints should be addressed to Miss C rather than to old SoLt (Ms. Sweet). Ms. Sweet accepts no responsibility for Miss C's opinions.

Thursday, April 7, 2016

How to Help Senior Cats at Rikki’s Refuge

Mr. Mister is 22 years old, FIV+, and has a home
for life at Rikki's Refuge.
Courtesy of Rikki's Refuge.

Today we are meeting three new senior friends who live at a special place called Rikki’s Refuge in Virginia. Rikki’s Refuge is a no-kill facility that cares for about 1,300 animals, including about 500 cats. Many of the cats are seniors and/or have chronic health issues. The nonprofit refuge relies entirely on donations to care for all those creatures, and we’re going to tell you exactly how you can help them. But first, cats.

Mr. Mister

Mr. Mister.
Clearly, this is a cat who knows where he's
going, so if you're taking a tour of Rikki's
Refuge, follow him.
Courtesy of Rikki's Refuge.
According to She of Little Talent’s failing memory, Mr. Mister was a pop group from her youth (Kyrie, anyone?). Obviously, that’s not what we’re dealing with here. This Mr. Mister is truly a cat with a past: he turned 22 last December. He’s a mellow, friendly fellow who is the sanctuary greeter and gets to know all the regular volunteers. He also sometimes rides on the truck dashboard while the manager makes rounds. Hey, a cat’s got to know what’s going on his territory.

Mr. Mister has lived at Rikki’s Refuge for ten years now. He first arrived there after testing positive for FIV. He started out living in one of the cat houses before earning the right to roam. And by the way, there are certain rules to roaming:
  1. you have to stick close and not leave the property,
  2. you have to show up for breakfast and dinner so the humans know you’re okay, and
  3. you have to promise not to harm or eat any of your neighbors (which is good advice generally).

We’ve been told that if you go on a tour of the refuge, Mr. Mister will go along as a guide. He must know where all the good stuff is.

Wally, diabetic senior, occasional
spokeskitty, all-around good guy who
came to the refuge when his elderly
people could no longer care for him.
Courtesy of Rikki's Refuge.


This handsome fellow is over 16 years old and loves people. He’s lucky the refuge is there: A few years ago, his elderly humans had to move to an assisted-living facility that was far away, and they couldn’t take Wally. This is a heartbreaking situation that is all too common. Fortunately, Wally landed at Rikki’s Refuge, where his age (14 at the time) and diabetes weren’t held against him.

Wally gets insulin injections twice a day, but he doesn’t let that get him down. He is mellow, laid back, loves to be held, and loves to have his long hair stroked (who wouldn’t want to do that?). He’s also stepped in as a Rikki’s Refuge spokeskitty at several educational events.


Seymour says, "Nyah!" to litter
boxes. He prefers to go his own
way, so to speak.
Courtesy of Rikki's Refuge.
Seymour really shows why Rikki’s Refuge is so fabulous. See, this cat has a nickname: Seymour Peemore. He got that name because he, um, pees wherever the fancy strikes him, which is pretty much everywhere. You can guess that this did not endear him to his former owners. He arrived at the refuge in 2004, and he’s now at least 16 years old.

Unlike most kitties who pee outside the box, Seymour does not have an underlying medical problem that makes him avoid the litter box. We guess he just doesn’t like to pee in a box (would you like to pee in a box?). Fortunately, at Rikki’s, Seymour can spend a lot of time outside “peeing on the tires of visiting vehicles—maybe he was a dog in a past life—peeing on the trash cans, and occasionally peeing on somebody's boots,” the refuge tells us. And what does the refuge have to say about all this “aromatherapy”? “We love him anyway.”

Good answer!

How you can help the Rikki’s Refuge cats

If you have a cat or three, you know how expensive it can be just to provide them with good food, not to mention vet visits and so on. Now think of an older cat, a diabetic cat, a cat who pees every which where and needs to be thoroughly checked for illness. Think of some 500 cats and 800 other animals. Those bills add up, and that’s why Rikki’s Refuge needs your help.

Rikki’s Refuge is a no-kill life-care facility that handles animals other organizations can’t or won’t. They specialize in feral cats, cats with FIV or leukemia, elderly animals, differently abled animals, animals with chronic health issues like diabetes, and farm animals that were once pets to keep them from entering the production market (i.e., being slaughtered).

They are a nonprofit 501(c)(3) that gets all of their funding from donations. If you’re interested in helping, there are many ways to do so:

Paypal: mail@RikkisRefuge.org
Opie’s Corner Store: http://astore.amazon.com/wwwrikkisrefu-20

Mail a check or money order: PO Box 1357, Orange VA. 22960

Rikki's Refuge on social media:

Blog: http://RikkisRefuge.blogspot.com/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/rikkisrefuge
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/RikkisRefuge/
Flickr: https://www.flickr.com/photos/rikkis_refuge/albums
YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/rikkisrefuge

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