5/12 Cat Rescuer of the Day: Clare Costello

The Cat Rescuer of the Day

The Cat Rescuers is an upcoming documentary about four dedicated volunteers who are saving the lives of hundreds of abandoned and feral cats on the streets of Brooklyn. Check out our Kickstarter!

Our film calls attention to a global issue being addressed by thousands of organizers and heroic human beings – those who do TNR, volunteer at shelters, take on fosters, what have you.  Since we could only put a fraction of those wonderful people in our film, we’ve created the Cat Rescuer of the Day program to celebrate the efforts of as many as possible.

Meet Today’s Rescuer: Clare Costello of Decatur, GA!

Rescue Efforts:

Thanksgiving Day 1999 my apartment building was like a ghost town; everyone was away with family and friends celebrating with plentiful food and drink. Mid-afternoon, I noticed a small group of cats at the edge of a thicket just out back. They did not look tame, nor did they look wild…they appeared expectant. It dawned on me that these cats were used to being fed, fed by someone who was taking a holiday! I could think of no better way to spend a day of thanks than to provide a nice, healthy meal for some cats that had been forgotten. I knew to be discreet and keep food and water bowls well hidden…no need to give someone a reason to call Animal Control. Over the next few weeks these wise creatures learned the sound of my car, knew my unit on the third floor and didn’t run completely off when I set down their food, fresh water and a sprinkling of catnip. Boy was I feeling mighty good about myself, I mean my indoor companion cats were all rescued off the street but here I was providing some comfort and sustenance to kitties that got left behind.

Then one day I saw them. Three tiny kittens came gamboling down the hillside following their mother. They did not yet wear her cautious expression. After all, so far she had survived fights, hunger, car tires and cruelty to provide them with the care they needed at such a tender age.

I have been a devoted animal lover all of my life, sickened at the number of healthy, lovable dogs and cats killed each day in our shelters simply because there are more of them than welcoming homes. All of my companion animals were spayed and neutered and I knew not to shop but to adopt. So, it hit me like a punch in the gut – these cats did not stand a chance of becoming anyone’s companion or even ending up in a shelter, yet in their struggle to survive, they will also breed.

The thought of those playful little kittens soon cultivating the look their mother wore, fighting to survive and to begin creating litters of their own spurred me to act, somehow… some way. I was not born with a humane trap in my hand. Far from it. Many blunders have been made and many more await my crusade but I borrowed traps when I had to, purchased some when I could, and shamelessly begged for donations to purchase more when needed.

One evening the following spring, I set down food, fresh water and a sprinkling of catnip, backing away slowly I sat and watched thirteen kitties tiptoe in to have something to eat, a clean sip of water and a tumble in their very own herb. Each one sported an ear tip; they had been vaccinated, spayed and neutered. Their life was still outdoors but with them the cycle of unwanted, homeless litters would end.

One Rescue I’ll Never Forget Was…

I remember each & every one…but Buttercream comes to mind. He was feral, but wanted so badly not to be.

One Thing I wish People Understood about Cats or Cat Rescuing Is…


When I’m Not Rescuing Cats, I Like to…

Read and relax while surrounded by my senior & special needs rescue babies.

I’m Looking Forward to  The Cat Rescuers Film Because…

People need to know this is EVERYONE’S responsibility and you can be part of the problem or part of the solution.

Be sure to follow @CatRescuersFilm on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, and support our Kickstarter – HelpTheCatRescuers.com!

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