Monday, November 9, 2009

Rescued Levindale Cats Find Homes

by Helene King

From living in a sewer to having a pink bedroom all her own. Sounds like the stuff dreams are made of, and it is, for a cat named Mitzvah (good deed in Hebrew).

You may remember Mitzvah from the post in July on this blog. That’s when Constance Harris, a patient accounting representative at Levindale, rescued her.

Constance had to climb into a sewer grate on West Belvedere Avenue, the road between Sinai Hospital and Levindale, because Mitzvah refused to move, despite coaxing from several LifeBridge employees.

You’d think finding a cat below ground and saving it would be enough surprises for one day. However as you’ll recall, turns out, less than two hours later, Mitzvah had given birth to four kittens. They are all pictured at right.

Belvedere, Levi (for Levindale), Ron (for Levindale’s past President Ron Rothstein) and Kay (Harris’ middle name) were all healthy but still needed with their mother.

So it was “Constance to the rescue” for a second time. She agreed to foster the family until September, when the little ones would be weaned.

Nurturing the cats fit purr-fectly into the Eden Alternative philosophy, already being followed at Levindale and Courtland Gardens. It incorporates pets into the daily life of residents, patients and employees to make the atmosphere in both centers more homey and relaxed.

In fact, with the help of an animal fund at Levindale, all of the cats were vaccinated and spayed.

Loving homes were found for each mom and her kittens after 10 weeks. Levindale’s Director of Nursing for Long Term Care, Barbara Church, adopted Mitzvah.

The fuzzy found feline is now one of six cats that Barbara and her husband parent. Mitzvah has her own room with a furry blanket and a perch so she can look out the window whenever she chooses. She has come a long way from the sewer grate!

Mitzvah also is the youngest of the four-legged members of the Church family, so at mealtimes, she’s been known to jump up the steps ahead of her older siblings so she can reach her food bowl first. She also receives all of the love any cat could want.

Other Levindale employees adopted Mitzvah’s kittens. It’s really the cat's meow for each of them.

Levindale employees or visitors, have you met Mitzvah or her kittens? Share your thoughts in the comment section!

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