Sedgwick resident finds ‘gift from God’ under her porch

by Bill Bush

SEDGWICK—For years, Sedgwick resident Kathy Chavez has had a stray cat in her neighborhood. In fact, it’s been around so long she named it Princess Shelly and has adopted a couple of its offspring over the years.

The latest one she rescued just in the nick of time.

Princess Shelly had settled underneath Chavez’s porch with two kittens, one white and one black. Chavez said that she and a neighbor kept an eye on them because they weren’t looking very good. One day the smell from underneath the porch was pretty bad. The black kitten came out and let them pick it up.

“I think that little black kitten came out because he was looking for help,” Chavez said. “He was extremely dehydrated.”

She thought he was about four weeks old at the time, which was on Aug. 12. Chavez recalls what happened next.

“My neighbor had the syringe so she took him to her house and I ran to Wichita to get some powdered milk for kittens,” Chavez said. “I came back and we kind of had to force it to eat in the beginning. But after that she started taking a bottle and started putting on some weight.”

They weighed her for the first time on Aug. 17 and the kitten weighed exactly ten ounces. Chavez things it might have weighed around six ounces when they found her.

Chavez and her neighbor took pictures of the kitten wrapped in pearls so her neighbor suggested calling the kitten Coco Chanel. Then Chavez’s cousin and daughter told her the cat was a male, so she named him Hairy Pawter. Notice the spelling.

Finally, last week she took Hairy Pawter to the vet and learned that Hairy was indeed a female, so Pawter became Coco Chanel once again.

It’s not the first time Chavez has mis-named a cat. She named another one of Princess Shelly’s kittens Lizzie after it invited himself in.

“That cat came into my house one day, I mean all the other ones were afraid and they were skittish and they would run,” Chavez said. “He just walked into my house and he never left and he just wasn’t afraid of nothing. And I’ve had him for a couple of years.”

Lizzie turned out to be male, but by the time she learned it she was too used to the name and wasn’t able to change it.

As for Coco Chanel, she was up to one pound, four ounces as of Sep. 3, and had still not eaten solid food. Plus, she’s officially an orphan. Chavez said the porch kept smelling so her husband crawled underneath and found Princess Shelly’s dead body.

Chavez is determined to help Coco Chanel become a healthy adult.

“I guess God sends them to you if they need help,” Chavez said.

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