The heat at the shelter was like nothing I had ever felt before in the 8 years I've lived in the Toronto area. The temp gauge on my car said 45 degrees celcius (113 degrees farenheit) and it had to be hotter in the shelter. The fans were blowing and the water dishes to the animals were all full. There really wasn't much else that could be done.
I hate going to the shelter when the cages have been marked for euthanasia for the next day. I was surprised to find that very few cats had been "marked" - most who were older, feral or sick. Until I walked up to a cage with a 4-5 month old brown tabby girl in it. She was stretching towards the fan and I sadly opened the cage to hold her for a little while. The least I could do is give her some love before she dies tomorrow. I held her up to the fan as her fur flew into my face and stuck to my lip gloss. She started to lick the sweat from my face, then lick my shoulders. She seemed frantic for love and starved for affection. She wrapped her paws around my neck and I was *done*. She was coming home with me.
My actual purpose for going to the shelter was to rescue "Ella", the "toe sucking cat": (Many thank you's and hugs to Jennifer and Alison who came forward for this sweet cat!)
She was SOOOOO happy to be out of the shelter!!! She's currently upstairs in my washroom and grooming up a storm! Actually, I have 3 cats in that bathroom right now and they're ALL getting along: Ralphie, Ella and Tabby Girl! It's such a bonus to only put out one litterbox instead of farming cats out in every washroom.
I felt really angry today. I'm sure it was the heat. It didn't seem right that the animals OR employees who had to work in those conditions, but who am I to bitch on behalf of the employees - they're union.
I could hear the dogs howling in the back and the cats were unusually quiet. I left the shelter in tears and that hasn't happened in a long time.