How to Care For Your Rescue Cat with Abby Engel

Resources

Pet Angel Adoption and Rescue Website

Pet Angel Adoption and Rescue Facebook Page

Donate and Support Pet Angel Adoption on their Patreon Page.

Videos for Cats:  Click Here.

3 Take Aways

  1. When adopting a rescue pet, you must give them time to adjust.  Many times, pets have been through a lot and just need time to get familiar with their new surroundings.
  2. Youtube is a great way to entertain your cat!
  3. Cats can’t tell you if they don’t feel well.  You need to pay attention to what they do, or don’t do, that will give you indications.

Sponsors

Pet Angel Adoption and Rescue:  This super cat friendly, no-kill cat shelter has been finding cute kitties homes for over 16 years.  Each cat is fixed, vaccinated and microchipped before going to their forever home.  After adoption, Pet Angel offers a wonderful online community to help enrich your new life with your newest family member.  Visit PetAngelAdoption.com to learn how you can adopt and support this great organization.

Transcript

Cliff (00:00):
Welcome everyone to the call of leadership podcast. Today I am joined by Abby Engel from Pet Angel Adoption & Rescue. Abby, how are you?

Abby Engel (00:07):
Hello. Hi, I’m good. How are you?

Cliff (00:09):
I’m doing well. Thank you for asking. So tell us a little bit about where you from, where you grew up.

Abby Engel (00:16):
Yes, so I am from, well technically I live in Bay city now, but I’m born and raised in Frankenmuth, Michigan. Of course I, my family actually goes back to founding fathers of Frankenmuth through the Engel side. So my family has been here for generations. I mean, you know my parents very well. But yeah, I was been here my whole life now. I live in Bay city, born and raised, went to high school here. I went to Saginaw Valley state and I graduated in 2018 with a major in communications and a minor in RP w which is rhetorical and professional writing. But now we’re going to cat rescue. I’m working in the nonprofit industry and I wouldn’t change it. Anything about it

Cliff (00:57):
With regards to, you know, your journey, how did you get involved with Pet angel adoption? The cat rescue?

Abby Engel (01:03):
Yes, it’s actually a very interesting story. I grew up in a cat rescue because my parents, when I was nine, accidentally started Pet Angel. We lived in town at the time and my grandmother had moved into the house behind us. We could help take care of her. And when she passed away we had some feral cats outside and it was the week she passed away. Two of the feral cats gave birth to kittens under our porch. And my mom being the cat lover, she was, when the moms weren’t able to take care of those kittens, we took the kittens and my mom had bottled fed kittens before, so she kinda knew what she was doing. But my brother and I, I was nine, so my brother would have been, what, like six or five. We learned how to bottle feed kittens. It was just a fun thing we were doing.

Abby Engel (01:47):
We were getting them, you know, their shots and finding them homes and in the vets in the area started hearing what my parents were doing and before we knew it we had cages of cats in our garage and my parents had to make the decision, are we just going to find these cats homes or are we going to do this and turn it into something. And they found list street, our location on the street here in Frankenmuth and we moved into a one room garage with three dog runs and we started putting angel. We’re still at that same location today, but now we have the full building and we don’t have dog runs anymore. We built real walls. We have apartments. Yeah. I got started in the nonprofit industry because I was born into it. I was raised in the cat rescue. When I went to university, I went for communications.

Abby Engel (02:31):
My minor was RBW and I wasn’t really into the other jobs that my peers were looking into. They were looking into more like, you know, writing grants, working for like publicist or things like that. And that wasn’t what I was looking for because I didn’t want to work for someone just to make somebody else all the money. Well I wanted to do was something that impacted people around me specifically for me animals. But that wasn’t my initial goal. I just wanted to make an impact in the world. I just, my goal wasn’t making money. And so when I graduated I actually got in the Bavarian princess court here in Frankenmuth and I was the 2018 Bavarian princess. And when I got on court, I was also searching for a full time job. It was right after I graduated and I couldn’t find a full time job that would give me the time off for princessing, but my mom needed a new office worker, so she was like, Hey, you could work at the cat rescue just while you’re doing princess and then you could consider a new job after that. I’ll give you the time off that you need. And so I did it and now I can’t leave. I love it too much. I’m too far in. This is my mom’s business. I didn’t intend on going into it, but I can’t stop. I’m too deepen. I love it too much and I wouldn’t, I can’t see myself doing anything else.

Cliff (03:42):
A question to go back on would be, you know, this is pet angel adoption, which is a cat rescue. Obviously a rescue is different from a pound. What is the difference between the two?

Abby Engel (03:53):
So my rescue, my cats aren’t kept in cages. Most of my cats, of course everyone has to be an occasion, some point when they first come in, but most of the time they’re in a free room room with other cats. So I have four big free room rooms. They have cat trees, litter boxes. My volunteers care with them all. They’re just not cupped in like, you know, those stereotypical what you think, small metal cages. We fully vet all of my cats. They are treated like they are in a home. They’re loved by, you know, all the people I have come in, all my volunteers, but my building is just set up nicer. I guess what I would say, it’s more luxury if you want to put the quotes around that. And then we keep them until they find a home. We don’t put them down for space or anything like that.

Abby Engel (04:39):
They’ll stay with me until they find a home or until the good Lord calls them home. But we don’t send them there ourselves. And then we get them fully vetted. So like orphan kittens, we actually have one. She’s getting her PA fix tomorrow. She has a deformed paws. So she’s getting her PA fixed. Monday I have a cat who is she has complications with both her eyes and right now she can’t see out of them and they’re gonna fix her eyelids so she can see. So we do things like that. Whereas other cats, if they would come into a pound if they had issues or a pod deformity, they would just be put down. So we kind of fix it and give them a second chance and then find them a family that can care for those needs.

Cliff (05:18):
If I understand this correctly, there’s, there’s a lot of cats, well not a lot of cats, but there are some cats that at least walk through your door anyways that do require medical attention a lot. I will admit that one of your cats that caught my heart is jinx. I mean, could you tell us a little bit of a story about, I love this.

Abby Engel (05:35):
So GenX was so jinx. I actually adopted jinx. Jinx is my personal cat at my house now. But he came from pet angel. He has epilepsy. And it is something that he really, really struggles with. I never intended to have three cats of my own at home, but when jinx had his first seizure, I was at the rescue. He was born there and is the only kitten from his litter. Even his mom didn’t live through the birthing process. He’s the only one that survived. And he has epilepsy. He’s not really all there. I mean that in the nicest way possible. I’m talking about my own cat here. But he’s not all there and he’s very Spacey. I realized there wasn’t something quite right with him, but I was at the rescue one day. I heard these noises. I walked in the back, he was in his cage recovering from being fixed and he was having a seizure, which I’ve seen before.

Abby Engel (06:24):
I’ve seen cats have seizures, but there wasn’t much we could do for that. But I, once I saw that and I went through that with him, I couldn’t let him go to anybody else. And I talked to my boyfriend into him and we took him home a couple months later. Jinx has struggled with epilepsy. I’ve had him almost two years now and June of 2019 jinx. Had a 20 minute seizure at my house. It was very traumatic for me. My boyfriend and I did not think he was living after that when the surgery was over. I have videos of it. It’s very horrible. But when usually when jinx wakes up from the seizures, he just, you know, kind of comes out of, it, will lay there for a few minutes but jump back up and he’s normal. But jinx was unresponsive for about four hours after the surgery.

Abby Engel (07:08):
I mean he had it for 20 minutes straight or not surgery, seizure. We thought that was it for him and then all of a sudden he just stood up and was fine. I took him to our vet the next week, which was very hard to take an epileptic cat in a car, but he, they kind of put them under to get some blood work done and they found out that it was all cognitive. So something in his brain is not firing correctly. And my vet put him on medication. Jinx, gets a pill twice a day, every day, once in the morning and once at night. He’s very good about it cause they give it to him in a treat, but he’s doing really good. So he went almost 250 days. Seizure-Free he did have a seizure last month. He got into some human food and then threw up and we think the throwing up caused the seizure.

Abby Engel (07:53):
Yeah. As it was cleaning up the vomit, I heard him having the seizure in the bedroom. I was maybe like a minute and a half long. It didn’t last very long. He did really, really good coming out of it and has, we haven’t had any problems since. I did talk to our vet. My vet is absolutely amazing with it too because I use the same VAT as the cat rescue does and he has epileptic cats himself. So dr fursona and I have really kind of connected on that level and when I called and let them know that jinx had a seizure, dr [inaudible] himself called me back to talk about it. So I really think that like it’s just, it’s perfect. And the medication that I have, it’s only $16 for a month and a half’s worth of medication. So it’s not something that’s breaking my bank. Yeah, it’s hard to watch your cat go through a seizure and it’s hard to think like he just turned four and we don’t really know how long he’ll be with us because the epilepsy will cut his life shorter and it’s hard to know. Like, I might not have him as long as I’ll have my other cats. But it’s good to know that I can give him a seizure free life. I think he’s happy. Yeah, he’s happy. He’s as healthy as I can get him. And he’s just, he’s my favorite. Don’t tell my other cats but he’s my favorite.

Cliff (09:02):
Talk to me cause I know with being in boot with being in, in your line of work, it’s got to bring you a great sense of satisfaction when you do find a home for these cats. But it’s, I know that it’s not all rainbows and sunshine walk and talk to us a little bit about maybe like, like one of the biggest challenges or a couple of the biggest challenges that, that you have that you’ve faced.

Abby Engel (09:21):
Yeah. Things like losing a cat, a cat passing away is always hard. Especially when a cat in the rescue passes away. Whether it’s like an abandoned kitten, you know, orphan kittens don’t always make it. Or an adult cat who passes away from old age illness, something like that, you know, hit by a car, they’re not always going to make it. But it’s still hard because that cat is passing away without a family. And that always hits hard on us. But I think two of my biggest obstacles when I came into this job was one dealing with the public. I, I, my jobs before the cat rescue was, I worked in retail, I worked at a high ropes course and I used to coach and it wasn’t something where I was dealing with people who had issues and I had to help solve the issues or the passion people have when they talk about animals.

Abby Engel (10:07):
So nine times out of 10 when I get a phone call, either somebody who wants me to take a cat, somebody who wants one of my cats or somebody who’s upset about something and I wasn’t really prepared for that. It’s still something that I’m trying to learn to balance and not carry home with me, but sometimes getting yelled at on the phone or called names. I’ve had to call the police a couple of times. I’ve seen animal abuse in the rescue. I’ve seen people bring animals and abuse them in front of me. So it’s just some of the things that people say or I see people do or I’ve seen animals gone through just breaks your heart and it’s not things that you know, you want to remember, but you can’t forget. So I think that’s something I’m still trying to balance, but I’m doing better with.

Abby Engel (10:53):
And then another thing that I think a lot of animal welfare people struggle with but isn’t really talked about or very well known, it would be compassion fatigue. It’s something that like nurses, first responders, people who care for people and care for people and trauma have a lot. But animal welfare and people in animal welfare have compassion fatigue. I mean, I have had cats die in my arms. It’s something that’s hard to deal with. And when you have a cat like Sparty our office cat pass away, it’s hard to go back to your job because that cat that you used to see every day is gone. And it’s, it’s a shock. People in animal welfare, we’re actually third behind police and firefighters for suicide rate just because it’s so even vets and animal welfare, you see, you see so much, you see so many people go, you see bad things happen to the animals and you carried all those emotions either that the people have, the animals have the trauma that they’ve gone through.

Abby Engel (11:50):
You carry it home with you, you carry it around with you, and it’s hard to retain volunteers. It’s hard to stay in the position, but I’m lucky enough that my parents have been, I mean, my mom’s spend in the animal welfare industry for 16 years now. So I was kind of raised into it and my parents kind of taught me how to deal with it differently. But just jumping into it was a lot different because I went kind of from just like not being in the front foreground with it, battling with my mom. I was kind of in the background and now I’m in the, you know, front, I’m getting the hit of it all.

Cliff (12:23):
Yeah. There’s, there’s no buffer between you and the general public.

Abby Engel (12:27):
Yeah. Yeah. So sometimes that’s hard to deal with. There’s not a lot out there that teaches you how to deal with that. But that’s something that I’m hoping that we can work on in the animal well in for industry. That’s something that I’m seeing a lot of psychologists work with animal welfare people now. So they’re starting to be some things that can help us out with that, which is always good.

Cliff (12:49):
And I think you bring up a good point cause I, there’s a lot of people out there that will sit there and say, wow, I want to do something either start a nonprofit cause I want to help these people and they’re passionate. And I do really believe that, that they’re genuine. But I’ve also seen a lot of people within a year, maybe a year and a half at the most that just walk away from it. Cause it’s, it’s, it’s too much. And I think they’re, they’re almost more in love with the idea and they really do want to make a difference. But man, when they get down there and they see it, like when you were talking before about people abusing animals and kind of view, I really do believe that you know, it just, it just burns you out. So now how long have you been working with pet angel rescue?

Abby Engel (13:29):
I started when I was nine. Yup. I started full time at the cat rescue in 2018 working 40 hours. But when I was nine, I was just, I mean when I was a kid we wouldn’t, we didn’t come home after school. We went to the cat rescue, my snow stuff stayed there, my bike was there. My brother and I would like dig tunnels in the snow from the parking lot being plowed. We would ride our scooters around the parking lot when mom was cleaning cages and doing adoptions. My brother and I used to be in charge of runs. I would have a run, he would have a run and we would help. We would have competitions to see who would adopt what cat from watch cage, trying to talk adopters into adopting a cat from my cage. And so I grew up in it, but it was still at that age, I’m nine, my mom’s not gonna let me see people abuse a cat. But now I’m 25 and 25 and I’m watching people.

Cliff (14:17):
Yeah, there’s no, there’s no, there’s no buffer. There’s no shield there. So you see it. Yes.

Abby Engel (14:22):
Yeah. And it’s hard. But I, I agree with you. I think a lot of people will ask me like, Oh, I’d love to have your job, but they want to have my job to help the animals. They want to help my job with the positive parts. But the positive parts is only a small handful. A lot of it is combating the bad stuff. It’s a good thing that I’m combating the bad stuff. But it takes a lot out of you.

Cliff (14:43):
And you talked about this on one of your Facebook posts and it actually broke my heart about somebody came into the rescue, they adopted a cat, took it home, they had the cat for boat. I want to say it was a week and brought the cat back. What advice could you give to somebody? Cause I’d also, I also know that it’s kind of like the in thing now to have a rescue animal, a rescue pet. What, what pieces of advice or what things should people be thinking about if they’re, if they’re saying to themselves, you know what, I would love to have a rescue cat or a rescue dog rescue cat. Let’s keep it there. What advice would you give?

Abby Engel (15:17):
Yes, so adopting a rescue animal, you have to realize they have a past and a lot of that past, all of my cats at the rescue right now, not one of them has some type of trauma in their past. All of them have trauma in their past, either where they came from, you know, abuse with a dog, with kids, you know, kids pulling on tails. Animals that have been attacked by other animals. Some of my pets were born at my rescue, so they’ve never seen stairs, a window, a TV, a microwave. So when you bring an animal home, it’s not going to be, you know, open the carrier door. They’re part of your family, happy-go-lucky, like it’s perfect. It’s going to take a time, a time period, and it’s more than a week. Sometimes it’s more than three months. I heard a statistic out there that it takes nine months for a dog to fully adjust to a home.

Abby Engel (16:08):
I’ve haven’t heard a statistic on a cat. I’d love to find one, but I heard that it takes nine months for a dog to adjust fully to a home. So you can’t really know when the first week, I actually have two cats coming back today that were adopted two weeks ago and they were two of my shyest cats too, so it’s going to be very hard for them because they went through that change. They were born at my rescue too. They’ve never been to a home before. So now when they do go to a home again, it’s going to be even harder for them because they went to a home and they were only there for two weeks. They’re absolutely terrified. They didn’t have the chance to come out of their shell and adjust to the home and now they’re coming back to the rescue.

Abby Engel (16:43):
So they’re even going to struggle more. And I think a lot of people don’t realize that, Oh my cat might hide under the bed for a week. Like it’s not that she doesn’t love you, she does like you. She’s just, she doesn’t know where you, she doesn’t know you. She doesn’t know the sense. She doesn’t know where she’s at. She’s never seen stairs before you. You put her litter box in the basement and she doesn’t know how to get to it. So you just have to remember it’s going to take some time. I always recommend starting your own pet or your new pet in their own bedroom, whether it’s like a bedroom, a bathroom. I never recommend a basement or a laundry room cause those can be scary. Just put their food, water, litter box and them in the bedroom. Just open the carrier door and leave them alone.

Abby Engel (17:23):
When they come out, they’ll do it on their own time. You know the food, water, litter boxes right there. So they’re not going to have an accident or you know, hold anything in and get sick. They know they can see the food and water so they’re not going to starve or you know, get sick and when they’re ready they’ll come out when you walk in and that’s when you can start introducing them to your other pets and giving them free reign of the house and showing them how to walk down the stairs and where the litter boxes, you can’t just open the door hope that they find it. You have to kind of lead them to it. And that’s not something a lot of people think about. And I mean some, I don’t have dogs, but I know that dogs can have issues. In the past, some dogs in rescues might have come from hoarding cases.

Abby Engel (18:06):
They might’ve saved your dog you just adopted from, it might’ve been a bait dog. It might’ve been trained for dog fights. So you might have two other dogs and he might be absolutely terrified of your other two dogs. You, you have to think about those things and maybe ask the people that you’re adopting the pet from. Like, what is this cat’s back story? Find out as much information as you can see, you can slowly help that dog improve. I don’t know if you know the YouTuber, Jenna marbles. She sounds familiar. She’s very well known in the YouTube world. I’ve been watching her for years, but she and her boyfriend who’s also utuber, they have four dogs now. They just adopted a rescue Greyhound this last year. She used to do Greyhound racing and they, they adopted her and they actually have some videos on YouTube if you’re interested in that stuff.

Abby Engel (18:57):
All about how they’ve helped her like come out of her shell from coming from a racing dog to living in a home and like they have a swimming pool. I mean they’re famous YouTubers, they’re rich, so a lot. But like she was terrified of their swimming pool. They had to like feed her clothes off from their other dogs because she had food aggression there and they’ve worked with all of her on that so you can kind of watch their videos from when they got her. They had to have a muzzle on her all the time and now she never wears a muzzle. They can, they only, her her boyfriend could only feed the dog, like she couldn’t feed the dog and now she can put her hand in the food bowl and their dog’s name is bunny bunny. Doesn’t do anything. So it’s really cool to watch those type of things because it’s not something you think about. But you can learn things from Jenna marbles. She’s not out here being a dog YouTube or about rescuing dogs or anything. She’s just doing something nice that she and her boyfriend wanted to do. But it’s something you can learn from just by watching what they did right

Cliff (19:52):
Before I hit the record button on the machine, we were talking about different ways to entertain your pets, especially if you’re not there. I had a cat long time ago. Full disclosure, I had a cat once and whenever I would go to work I would come home and all of my dirty clothes were laid out all over the apartment, my socks, my underoos, everything was everywhere. And it was like day after day after day, never my clean clothes, just my dirty clothes. And you know, this lady I worked with, she was a cat lady. She said, Hey cliff, it’s because your cat misses you. So he wants her sent all over the apartment. But it was, you know, coming home and finding my stuff, laying all over the floor. I was like, Oh, come on, give me a break. So you know, what would, what is some of the things that that people can do? I mean, I can imagine them getting into the trash or shredding, shredding couches or whatever it is. But what, what’s one of the tricks? You were telling me some ideas about this. What are some of the tricks?

Abby Engel (20:45):
So when I lived, when I was in college, I lived with my best friend Maddie and I had my cat or two. He’s, I still haven’t, but it was just our two at the time. And our two would get into our trash. We would come home every day and the trash in the bathroom would be through the bathroom, through the hallway into the kitchen, into the living room. It was through the whole apartment. So what I started doing was I looked up on YouTube videos for cats. You can find there is thousands out there and they are absolutely amazing. But the very first one that comes up is an eight hour loop. Somebody set up like a video camera with some bird seed and birds and squirrels come in and eat the bird seed and then fly off the screen. And it changes to different scenes with different animals.

Abby Engel (21:26):
But it’s a nine hour loop of all different scenes. And I would put it on my iPad and set it up on the floor for our two. When I would go to class, I mean I would, I was taking 24 credits, I’d be gone all day. So I would leave in the morning, we’d come home, the trash wouldn’t be everywhere and our two would still be sitting in front of my iPad watching the videos. Yeah, he would just sit right there and watch the videos. To this day, if I still bring them up, he gets all excited. He recognizes the noises the birds will like fly off the screen and his head will like keep going, like trying to like see where the bird flew off to. It’s so funny. But we actually play the videos. I have a projector at the cat rescue and I project YouTube videos for cats on the walls for my cats in the free room rooms and they love it.

Abby Engel (22:07):
You can find all sorts of different ones like strings going across little laser pointers, cartoon fish that like swim across the screen. The cats love them. So cats, if you think about like a cat in a wild or even dogs in the wild, they’re not supposed to be just given food. They have to go out and hunt and work for their food and capture it and kill it. But our house pets, we just put their food in the bowls and then they get obese. So one way that I’m combating that with my cats and something I use at the rescue for my very active cats who like to rip everything apart is puzzle bowls. They usually make them for dogs, but I just use them for cats. But they’re basically all sorts of different puzzles that the cats have to solve. So like there’s some where they have to like push a thing and it knocks the, you put treats in it and they have to figure out how to get the treats out.

Abby Engel (22:56):
Or there’s drawers and they have to like push the drawer open or there’s like a ball and they have to roll the ball all over and you put the treats inside the balls and the balls come out of the holes. And if that’s one way to like feed your cat, put all their food instead of putting it in a bowl in one of those balls with the little holes in it, that’ll dispense them. And your cattle stay busy for four hours getting their lunch. Or if you have a, you know, a cat who likes to get into cupboards, keep put, put, put, put some treats in a puzzle bowl, it’ll keep them active for hours. I have cats who would get like really rambunctious and you know, nibble fingers and want to play and wrestle and we would give them a puzzle bowl of treats in it and you keep them busy for three days straight trying to get those treats out of there.

Abby Engel (23:38):
So I always recommend them. I know you can find them on Amazon for super cheap. A lot of cats like spring toys. If you go on Amazon and you type in spring toys for cats, you’ll find them for like $5 and you can prime them to your house. All of my cats my office cat pansy, she’s 14. I’ve never seen her play with a toy. We’ve had her for 10 years and she does not like toys, but she will play with Springs. I will see her run through the office chasing these spring toys. They’re just little tiny Springs. They just, they’re pink and green and the cats can like easily carry them. I think when they like push them, they roll and they like fly across the room. They love them $5 and keeps your cat entertained for days.

Cliff (24:20):
I know we’ve, we’ve talked, we kind of overlap between cats and dogs during our discussion here. And the one thing that I wanted to ask you about is like, like I’ve been a dog guy, like all my life, I love dogs and whenever my dog has ever gotten sick, I mean I know for some reason I can just look at their face. They just look sad, you know, cause dogs can really emote through their face, whereas a cat’s got the same expression all the time. Right. And I know there’s a lot of people out there that love cats. What, is there any way that you can tell, like if your cat is sick or having an issue or a problem, is there any way that you can,

Abby Engel (24:58):
Yeah, so cats hide their illnesses for a lot of reasons. But I think the biggest reason that they do that is because in the wild, if they’re injured or sick, they’re more preyed upon. So that’s their way of like, you know, hiding it so they’re not going to be attacked or the target. But even your house cat will still hide things. Nine times out of 10, if your cat pees outside the litter box, your cat has a UTI. There’s a couple of different things. Your cat, if it’s declawed, they might not like the litter. You might not clean the litter box very often. If you have multiple cats, your cat might want their own box. But most of the time it’s because of a UTI. I’ll have a lot of people bring cats back to me or bring cats to me because she’s peed on my bed six times.

Abby Engel (25:42):
We can’t handle it. She peed on a towel right in front of me or you know, she’s pooping all over the rug. I don’t know why you take her to the vet. They test the urine, they test the fecal matter. It’s UTI, it’s worms. You give them a round of antibiotics for five days and they’re back to normal and then I find the cat a home. But they could have stayed in their home if they would’ve just take them to the, to the vet. If your pet goes outside the box, the first thing to do is take them to the vet. Whether it’s number one or number two. Another thing that cats do when they hide is stop eating. And then cats can’t go 24 hours without food. So if you notice your cats aren’t eating, even canned food or treats, you know, not eating as much, take them to the vet like as soon as you can, not eating, not drinking and going outside the boxes, the biggest signs for them.

Abby Engel (26:31):
And it’s important that you take your cat to the vet and you get them up to date on those things. Because if your cat has like, let’s say something more serious, like something with their liver or kidney disease, they’re going to hide that too. They’re not going to tell you that they’re in pain. They don’t know how to speak. So they can’t say, Hey, I’m not feeling well. And you might not pick up on the little things like he’s not jumping up on the counter because you know his stomach hurts or you’re not seeing that he’s throwing up because he’s throwing up under the bed when you’re not home and you don’t look under your bed. So taking him to the vet regularly, your vet checks those things. And you can catch things like kidney disease before it turns into kidney disease. An untreated UTI can often turn into kidney disease.

Abby Engel (27:09):
I have a cat at the rescue with kidney disease who got it from an untreated UTI. So if you don’t get your cats UTI treated, then it can become fatal. I have cats who, colds can become fatal because they have weakened immune systems. So if you don’t even treat a cold, it could become worse and it can become, you know, pneumonia. So take him to the vet. Even if you don’t let them outside, even if you don’t, you know, you might not think they need vaccines, but it’s not just for vaccines. You just need an annual checkup. Make sure everything’s good. They’re not dying. Keeping track of if they eat or don’t eat, drink or don’t drink. Yes. Where they’re going to the bathroom. Yep. Yep. Okay. Yeah. I would always take her about once a year, even if they don’t need a shot, just to make sure that they’re okay.

Abby Engel (27:56):
Your vet can catch things before you can and a lot of the times when you see it, it’s too late. Your cattle be towards the end. Tell us about a time where you thought to yourself, wow, I’m really making a difference. Like you really impacted somebody. I, I think I have a couple of different answers. You said time I impacted a person, but I think I impact animals more than I do people. Okay. But I started at Pettengill full time in 2018 from when I started in 2018 to today. I have adopted out 325 cats, so I feel like I’ve impacted 325 animals and 325 families without me or without the rescue. Some of those cats wouldn’t be at the rescue. I don’t think that some of those cats might have found those people and those people wouldn’t have the animals that they have. I know some people I have adopted to single old ladies who lost their husband and didn’t want to be alone anymore and I gave her that happiness.

Abby Engel (28:54):
I hear those stories all the time. Well it sounds like there’s 325 happy families. Yes. Yeah. We have an alumni page for all of our former adopters on Facebook and a lot of them will join the page when they adopt. So it’s really cool cause I get to see those cats like as they grow and I get to see like the really shy ones come out of their shell as in when they’re in a home and it’s really cool for like the ones that are born at the carer. Sq. I see them the day they’re born and then I get to see them in a home. So it’s just like you get to see that one 80 I saved a kitten from under a porch last year. I named her Calypso. Her new name is Tia, but her dad came in last week, the man that adopted her and he brought pictures and was telling me all about her and he just came by just to show me updates. So it’s, it’s really cool that I have like that connection with those people.

Cliff (29:41):
If people want to connect with you online, whatever, what’s the best way for, for people to, you know, to reach out and get engaged?

Abby Engel (29:50):
Yes. So if you want to find pet angel, we’re on Facebook as just Pet Angel Adoption and Rescue. If you type it in, we come up, we also have a Patrion which is something you actually helped us with. So you can, yes, I’m super excited about it, but you can join our Patrion. It just launched. It’s just Patreon.com/petangeladoption. But if you want to find me, I’m on Instagram and I’m just ACE Engel . And I actually share a bunch of behind the scenes on my Instagram every single day I’m posting just videos of me walking around the cat rescue. And you know, Arthur, my office cat eating my lunch is on my Instagram today. So you’ll be able to see some great behind the scenes things there too. Yeah.

Cliff (30:36):
And for the people that are listening, we’ll have all those links in our show notes. Abby, it’s been a real treat having you on the podcast today.

Abby Engel (30:43):
Yes. Thank you so much for having me. I’m so excited and you guys should definitely listen again. Cliff is amazing and I’m really excited that he’s doing this. I follow all of your Facebook videos, so the fact that I can now listen to you when I’m driving to work makes it even better.

Cliff (30:57):
Oh, yes. Well wow. Thank you that that’s a nice vote of confidence.

Abby Engel (31:01):
You’re welcome.

About The Host

About The Host

Cliff Duvernois

Cliff is the host of “The Call of Leadership” podcast.  He has published over 500 short stories over Facebook, Medium and LinkedIn.  He is a passionate lifelong learner, marketer and philanthropist.  He currently lives in Reese, Michigan with his fiancé Sherry and her two children.

ABOUT