willy on chair

For almost 3 years, our precious senior boy Willy has been living with cancer. With regular chemotherapy and medication to help his appetite, there were times that he was doing so well that we began to imagine (and hope against all odds) that by some miracle he no longer had cancer. Each time we thought his time was close, he would surprise us all.

His previously quiet and timid nature began to change as he became unwell. You would never know on meeting him, that this affectionate and attention loving cat was ever anything different. It has been heart-warming to see him become so content with human company. Many of our visitors have been greeted with Willy in our reception and all of our volunteers know how much he loves a lap to lay on and lots of pats.

Willy & Melina

Willy has had a number of dietary changes to suit his taste and assist with weight gain. His cat mates Socks and Melina were more than happy to share their food in return for his company. Sometimes, the sharing also extended to sharing a cosy bed.

We’ve had almost 3 years to prepare for his goodbye ….but it didn’t make it any easier.

The time came that his body could no longer fight this horrible disease. It was heartbreaking to say goodbye but we couldn’t have asked for any more from this beautiful boy. We will miss you sitting on our paperwork and purring on our laps. Forever in our hearts, Willy will be missed by so many.

BAWCS ‘caring with compassion’


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Farewell Tuppy

Those big round eyes captured our hearts from the moment Tuppence arrived. This sweet girl has had her health challenges but we vowed never give up on her until she let us know it was time…and that she did. It is with a very heavy heart that we let you know Tuppence has been given her wings.

One of our palliative care cats, Tuppy was recently placed into permanent foster care. We knew she wasn’t destined to be around for years but we were shocked when the day came so soon. Our heartfelt thanks to Brooke and Shane who took Tuppy into their home and their hearts. It brought us much joy hearing how happy she was in those final weeks, sleeping on your bed and following you around the house. We feel their pain as their hearts are now broken. Fly free sweet Tuppy, we will all miss you so much.

You can read Tuppy’s story here


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April waiting for swim

1. NEVER leave your pets in the car on a warm day. The reality is pets die in hot cars! Please don’t take the risk, as it may cost them their life. If you can’t take them with you where you are going, leave your pets at home. Don’t leave pets confined in rooms or garages that have no ventilation or air conditioning. With no airflow, confined spaces can heat up quickly.

2. CHILL OUT! On hot days, limit outside activity or play to avoid heat exhaustion and keep them calm. If you’re going to walk your pooch, make sure it’s early in the morning or in the evening after sun set. If it’s too hot to walk bare feet, then it will be too hot for the pads of their paws.

3. BE PREPARED. If you do have to take your pet with you on a hot day, keep them in the shade, take a water bottle/bowl with you and a misting spray to keep them cool.

4. WATER, WATER, WATER! Avoid dehydration by providing extra water bowls with a heavy base to avoid spilling, and place them out of direct sunlight. Pop in some ice cubes to keep the water cool. Feed your rabbits small pieces of water rich fruit/veg like apple which will keep them hydrated (avoid the seeds).

5. BRING THEM INSIDE! Take extra care with small pets such as rabbits, guinea pigs & birds, specific breeds (short noses) that are susceptible to heat, elderly or young, overweight or unwell pets. If possible, keep them out of the heat and in air-conditioned rooms. Many pets will choose to lay on naturally cool surfaces such as your tiled kitchen floor.

6. FROZEN WATER BOTTLES! It’s free and easy to freeze water in used soft drink bottles which can be placed in different spots for your pets to lean against.

7. GROOMING your pets to ensure there is no loose or matted fur will help prevent overheating.

8. WET TOWELS can be placed over outdoor pet enclosures, used to wipe down cats and placed for pets to lay on.

9. CLAM SHELL POOLS for your pooch. The BAWCS doggies love them!

10. CHANGE THEIR BEDDING. When you pack away your winter doona, don’t forget to do the same for your pets. Use elevated beds for dogs to allow airflow. Your kitty might love her fluffy blanket in winter but when the heat hits, making a change to a cotton sheet will keep her cooler.

11. DON’T FORGET your larger pets such as horses, will need access to shade and extra water too. You may be surprised how much they can drink on a hot day.

Buns with frozen water
BAWCS bunnies love their frozen water bottles
April in clam pool
April enjoying her clam shell pool

 

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Tuppence

It is with sadness we advise that we have finally received the results of tests undertaken on Tuppence that recently indicated something was not quite right. The high white cell count cannot be accounted for (the urine culture was clear) so it is feared that our sweet princess may have cancer. This means she is not a candidate for the Radioactive Iodine Therapy we had planned to cure her Hyperthyroidism.

Tuppence will now join our palliative care cats. We will continue to monitor her health and do whatever is required for her to be happy and comfortable.

For everyone that had donated to her thyroid treatment, please contact us if you would like a refund of your donation, otherwise we will put the funds raised to her ongoing palliative care, including her thyroid medication. Please note: we were unable to get the results of pre treatment tests prior to raising the funds as the tests have to be undertaken one week prior to Tuppence being admitted for the treatment.

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Marvel Adopted

Almost a month ago, a very special match was made with our beautiful Marvel. Such a gentle soul, who had been in BAWCS care for some time and was loved by all of our volunteers. It warmed our hearts when we received this lovely update from Marvel’s new “mum”, and we just had to share…

Thought Tony and I would send through an email letting you know how Marvel is settling in. Marvel is absolutely adorable and we love him to bits. He has settled in really well and seems to think he’s boss…lol!

Marvel stretched out

He is very well toilet trained, no mishaps whatsoever and loves his tucker both wet and dry food and has his daily routine down pat….or should I say we have his daily routine down pat…like I said he thinks he’s boss 😉

Marvel loves his smooches, snuggles, pats and kisses with both Tony and I and distributes them differently with the two of us.

At night when it’s bed time, he snuggles right in with Tony and I on our bed, on our pillows behind our heads, at the foot of the bed or anywhere on there he feels comfortable. We often wake up at night and he’s on our pillow next to us looking at us, then he makes sure we’re okay and settles back in and starts purring all over again….until we move our tootsies and he’s up for a play 😉

He has started to become more adventurous within our home and looking into places he hasn’t yet gone. He knows exactly where his food is kept and even when Tony and I are in the backyard he is often at the sliding door watching and staying close.

marvel beautiful boyHe has found ‘his spot’ on the couch, on our laps, on the dining room chairs, on our bed, on the floor and has just started approaching his scratching post without as much fear.

Oh and he loves, loves playing with his toy mice and adores shoe laces.

The kids love him to bits and he is not so shy with them as he was when we first brought him home.

Tony and I just laugh at all the fun and cute little things he gets up to, even his cantankerous mood and crankiness at times.

We are so grateful for our furry feline child in ways I can’t describe and Marvel means the world to both Tony and I.
One thing I am so thankful for is BAWCS no kill policy because we would not have Marvel if that was the case seeing as he was a BAWCS resident for 2 years. How no-one snapped him up before us is unbelievable however he was waiting for the right family to come along and take him home and love and spoil him rotten, which Tony and I do without hesitation.

Marvel has started snuggling with one of his toy mice attached to a shoelace of a night time. If you look closely at his photo, the toy mouse is under his cute little head.Marvel and his toy mouse
Before I sign off…this kitty loves TV…he sits there watching it with us…he sure is lovable.

Until next time…love Marvel, Tony and Christine x

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Rusty was a pretty sad sight when he first arrived into BAWCS care, with a large open wound on his head and a damaged eye. While he was happy to have a loving pat and keen to get some attention, it was obvious this poor boy was in pain. As fate would have it, he had found himself at Central Victoria’s only “No Kill” shelter and he was in safe hands. He was immediately taken to our vet who suspected the head wound was an abscess which had been untreated. The eye had a very painful and deep seated ulcer, leaving the only option to remove the eye. A blood test also revealed a further challenge, he was FIV positive.

FIV (Feline Immunodeficiency Virus) is a feline disease which weakens the immune system and is most commonly spread through deep bite wounds that usually occur outdoors during aggressive cat fights.

Rusty underwent surgery to remove his damaged eye and repair his head wound. A flap of skin was stitched over the wound on his head but it was unknown if this would be successful given the size of the area. Rusty came through the surgery well however he was left with quite a few stitches and a drainage tube.

Rusty with drainage tube
Rusty post surgery with drainage tube and stitches

A return visit to the vet confirmed that the skin flap hadn’t worked but the skin around the area appeared to be healing. A second surgery was undertaken and this time the stitches held and over time, the wound healed and revealed a very playful and vibrant young cat.

It was a long road of recovery for Rusty, but we never doubted that the process would be worth it…and he reminds us every day! Rusty is currently sharing with our group of “office cats” at the BAWCS Shelter, where he entertains us with his antics, sometimes his playfulness proving to be a little too much for the more mature “Pumpkin”.

Rusty Feb 2015
Rusty ready for adoption!

Rusty is available for adoption now and ready to start his new life. If you would be interested in adopting this special boy, you can view his profile here.

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Mogg

Late last year a very special girl came into our lives. Our sweet Mogg, with her endearing little half ear and cute little kitty chirps. Originally, a “community cat”, a change of circumstances meant her future was uncertain as the care she had been receiving was not going to be available any longer.

She immediately won us over with her beautiful nature and we wanted to find her the home she deserved…but we didn’t get the chance.

On arrival into care, our hearts sank as we immediately noticed a very large mammary tumor and we held our breath when she went into surgery to have it removed. Our worst fears were realised when she was diagnosed with a very aggressive form of cancer. Mogg recovered well from the surgery and she joined our ‘palliative care’ family of cats with the word put out for a long term foster carer to take her on.

Whilst we waited for that special home, another two lumps became evident and they were very different to the original one so we decided again to have these removed given Mogg had recovered very well from her previous surgery, and sure enough, she came through with flying colours again.

We knew her time was limited however we weren’t expecting such a rapid deterioration after the last surgery. It is with a very heavy heart and many tears that we must now let you know she has lost her battle.

Over the last week she had started to decline and her little chirps became less frequent and after finishing a course of antibiotics and pain relief for an infection, we knew the end was coming closer.

Once she became unable to eat and developed difficulties with her breathing, the time to end her suffering was upon us and whilst heartbreaking, we knew we had to let her go. Right by her side, whispering comforting words and telling her how much we loved her, Mogg was given her wings and she is now flying pain free, another Angel at the Rainbow Bridge.

Although, we didn’t get the chance to find her that loving home, we hope the love we felt for her and the care we had shown her was enough for this beautiful girl who will always be remembered by the many that were touched by her.
R.I.P sweet Mogg.


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Willy diagnosed 2

After noticing that Willy had lost weight, it was off to the vet for a health check. A blood test was taken and it was suspected to be Pancreatitis. He began to respond well to medication and a change of diet but he suddenly dropped weight again and stopped eating.

So, he once again returned to the vet but this time for a few days while they undertook further tests. He seemed to be bright but was only eating a tiny amount, not nearly enough to sustain him.

He was still not a well boy so it was decided to go ahead with exploratory surgery and a feeding tube was inserted.

Once he recovered from the surgery and started to eat small amounts again, we were able to bring him back to our shelter and await the results of the surgery.

The question which had been on our minds was finally answered ….Willy has cancer.

This beautiful boy came into our care as a teenager back in 2005 and we have come to know him well. He has a quieter personality but is always eager to get your attention. He enjoys the company of other cats and has a protective streak, often taking younger cats under his wing (or should we say paw).

Just as we made the commitment to care for him when he came into our lives those many years ago, we will continue to do so. Willy will now join our growing number of palliative care cats and take up residence with Socks, as another “office cat”, getting lots of love and attention from all of our volunteers and visitors.

After Willy’s stitches have been removed from his surgery, treatment options will be discussed with our vet however if it impacts on his quality of life, we will not be going ahead. Our main focus is for Willy to remain happy and comfortable.

If you would like to help support Willy’s ongoing veterinary care and special dietary requirements, then why not become a Special Needs Cat Sponsor?

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basil lipoma

For most people, the thought of having to surrender their beloved pet is heartbreaking. For many people in palliative care, they have to make that decision to leave their best friends behind….and this is how Basil, our placid champagne senior, came into our care. With a bond formed over 12 years, his “Mum” entrusted her precious boy into BAWCS care and we gladly accepted him, bump and all.

Basil recovery
Basil after surgery, with his drainage tube still in

On first glance, you could have been mistaken for thinking Basil was huge…before realising that something was not right! He had a large tumor growing on the left side of his body and although he appeared to have adapted to having this growth attached, it was obvious he would be more comfortable without the “bump”.

As with all surgery, and particularly at 12 years of age, there were risks involved but the blood work determined he had a good chance and we knew he would have a better quality of life with the tumor removed so the decision was made to go ahead with the operation.

After a nervous wait, we got the call saying the surgery was a success and the 1kg lipoma (non-cancerous fatty lump) had been removed. Sue and the team at McIvor Rd Veterinary Centre took such great care of him and he was back at the BAWCS shelter in no time!

Sadly, Basil’s mum has since passed away but she can rest peacefully in the knowledge that her beloved Basil will still live on happily in BAWCS care, until we can find a permanent lap for him to curl up on.

With the stitches long since been removed and his fur slowly growing back, Basil is a handsome (and somewhat lighter) boy! He’s still getting used to his new found agility and hasn’t quite realised he can jump up on your lap himself…or does he just have us wrapped around his clever little paw?

basil sleeping
Basil can finally sleep comfortably on his side!
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