In 2004, Tulip was born into a colony of community cats that lived behind a church. She had never been touched by people, and was super-shy. There was a person who fed the colony on a regular basis, and who made sure that any newcomers to the group were spayed and neutered. Tulip was one that just couldn't be trapped, and continued to have litter after litter.  Finally, when Tulip was about 2 years old, she was caught in a humane trap and taken directly to the vet's office for spaying and shots.  After some healing time, Tulip was released back into her community.

For the next 7 years, Tulip stayed with her cat family in the relative safety of the church grounds.  Many of the cats came and went, but Tulip was there consistently over the years.  Things changed, however, when a new groundskeeper took over -- he decided that all the cats must go.  So, he started trapping the cats, one by one, and taking them to the pound; Tulip was one of those caught.  The person that had been feeding the cats all those years immediately went to the pound and "bailed" Tulip out, knowing that as a "feral" cat, she would never be adoptable, and would be very quickly put to sleep.  Once Tulip was freed, she couldn't be returned to the church, so her rescuer decided to release Tulip into her own backyard.

So began a new chapter in Tulip's life.  Since Tulip was moved into an unfamiliar neighborhood, she would need to learn where "home base" was -- that is, a place to go for food, shelter and safety.  So, for the next 6 weeks, Tulip was kept in a large crate in the backyard.  Her crate held all the comforts that she had never known.  There was a large, soft bed to lay in, a litterbox filled with clean litter, fresh food and water just inches away, and yummy wet food at least once a day.  Since it was cold and raining, Tulip's crate was kept on the covered patio, wrapped with thick blankets to keep out the wind.  After a few weeks, she began to look foward to the evening ritual of placing a heating disc under her bed, piping hot from the microwave.  She would stay snuggled in her bed all night, toasty warm...most certainly for the first time in her 9 years.

Tulip has since been released back outside, free to roam again.  She stays close to her rescuer's house, although is still super-shy.

Keep updated on Tulip: follow her journey on her Blog page.
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