Ernie & Henry: Together Again
By FieldHaven Feline Center
Stories like this are very common: Rescuer takes in a cat or kitten but doesn’t have them neutered or spayed. Along comes another…and another and before they know it, the rescued cats become family members in the literal sense.
Such was the case of Ernie, a retired military veteran. While his intentions were to help the stray felines, he didn’t have the proper guidance to curtail reproduction. Knowing his local shelter was not a safe option, he maintained his growing colony. Unfortunately, it grew beyond his landlord’s limits and he was evicted from his apartment.
When Ernie reached out to FieldHaven for help in April of 2018, we answered. All of the kitties were altered, several were re-homed, and the others were taken into the shelter for adoption. This kind-hearted rescuer was left with the one cat with whom he relied upon for emotional support, Henry, and the knowledge of how to manage community cats in the future.
FieldHaven also assisted Ernie with getting Henry designated an emotional support animal. Unfortunately, the landlord at Ernie’s new home was refusing to let him – or any tenant – have emotional support animals live on the premises. Needing a place to call home, and without many options, Ernie again reached out to FieldHaven.
With FieldHaven’s support, Ernie contacted his Congressman, John Garamendi, and Veteran’s Affairs to file a grievance against the landlord for discrimination. It was initially thought that Henry could stay with a friend during this time, but after four months he needed to be fostered elsewhere. FieldHaven safely tucked Henry into Buck’s Barn during the rest of this extremely slow process, which ultimately took 11 months. Everyone at FieldHaven celebrated when Ernie won his case and he was reunited with Henry in his home.
What’s the second part of this story?
Two of the cats from Ernie’s original group, Shay and Peter, were extremely bonded. Being older cats, they’d have a tougher time getting adopted. While Peter liked human attention, Shay didn’t like to be picked up, making their potential adoption even more difficult.
Shay and Peter spent about a year at 2nd Chance Ranch before moving to FieldHaven Marketplace earlier this year. They were adopted together at the beginning of October to a wonderful family…after living at FieldHaven for 19 months.
Ernie keeps in touch with us at FieldHaven and is a great supporter of the work we do. It is because of your support that FieldHaven can take the time and offer resources necessary to make sure cats, kittens, and the humans who love them are all nurtured, happy, and healthy. This Thanksgiving week, we are thankful for you!