I used to think that catching my little abandoned Rat Terrier Jack was hard – that took a month of following him around my neighborhood. 

Then I thought that no rescue would ever be as difficult as catching my once feral Shadow – that took a few months of following him around La Grange, Countryside, and Hodgkins.  Then I thought that no rescue could ever possibly be harder than catching sweet Etta, the Railroad Dog from Englewood – that took us almost a year.  Then along came Cookie from Cook County – we spent hour upon hour in the sub-zero temps attempting to catch this little street orphan.

AliceBut now I truly believe that it would be extremely difficult to top the difficulty of the rescue of Cemetery Dog – now known as sweet Alice.  I never believed that we could ever accomplish it, but Katie finally did accomplish it last Sunday – after seven grueling months of first feeding her at the cemetery, and then tracking her movements up and down the lakefront over the last several months after she wandered away from the cemetery.

I usually write and post our rescue stories on the wonderful website run by my friend and fellow pet rescuer Laura Simpson called ‘The Great Animal Rescue Chase.’  I think about 25 of my rescue stories are posted there now, and then Laura posts some of them on The CARE2 Animal Welfare Website.

But I really think that Alice’s story belongs to Katie, and that she should write it and post it on The Great Animal Rescue Chase, because it really was – A Long and Great and Nearly Impossible Animal Rescue Chase – and hopefully, Alice’s story might inspire someone else to ‘Never Give Up.’  We need far more Pet Rescuers like Katie out there today.  Here is the link to the website:


My contribution to Alice’s story, and my Kudos to Katie, have been sent to The City Newshound in the form of a poem that I wrote entitled ‘Safe At Last.’  It was the least that I could do considering that Katie owes me about $500 in downtown parking fees for every time that she called me and said “Cemetery Dog is now on Lakeshore Drive and…!” or, “Cemetery Dog was just seen with the homeless guy about two hours ago in front of Macy’s on State Street!” and of course, by the time that I would arrive at any of these places, Cemetery Dog would be long gone.

There are now an increasing number of folks, myself included, who believe that Katie should adopt Sweet Alice herself, as she did Sweet Etta, the once extremely elusive Railroad Dog.

Thanks to Katie, I ended up adopting three wonderful dogs - good old Trucker, Shadow, and Little Valentino.  And because of Katie, I took in two more cats (just what I needed) – Jailhouse Joe and Jasmine.

Because of Policewoman Barb, I took in both Carrie and Scruffy.

And because of Sue Malone, I am now blessed (or cursed) with both Little Renny and Devil Dog Roxie.

The rest of my Beasty Boys, Poopers, and Kitty Cats are my own damned fault.

So Come On, Katie – Etta and Alice would make wonderful Soul Sisters!!

Safe At Last

By Ed Kostro,
Author of Through Katrina’s Eyes
Poems From An Animal Rescuer’s Soul

This starving canine orphan was homeless
Living on the grounds of a huge cemetery
I joined two fellow pet rescuers out there
Way back in the sub-zero days of January

But the staff at this cemetery, were heartless
They eventually kicked us off of their property
After we left, so did this homeless street orphan
She ended up on icy Lake Michigan, at its mercy

 Chicago’s Fire Department managed to get her off the ice
Their heroic rescue was even depicted on the evening news
But she panicked and escaped along the lakeshore once more
The mounting number of people concerned for her, now grew

 For the next several months, we would get calls and texts about her
She would be spotted somewhere along Chicago’s massive shoreline
But by the time that we would race out to her latest reported location
She would already be gone, and this would sadly happen time after time

We finally got the break that we had been hoping and praying for on Sunday
She was spotted lying under a bench, next to traffic-filled Lake Shore Drive
Several of us raced to this location, wondering if she had died of starvation
But we were soon filled with joy – this homeless street orphan was still alive

 One of my fellow pet rescuers sat in the grass, tossing her bits of delectable food
She staggered to her feet, began devouring them, and came closer and closer to her
When Katie finally managed to get a leash around her neck, we were now all ecstatic
This homeless orphan was safe at last, after over seven months of very frustrating work

And as soon as this homeless, starving, terribly afraid, street orphan was finally captured
She transformed into one of the sweetest dogs, that we have ever had the pleasure to meet
She’s now being cared for at an animal hospital, getting the medical attention that she needs
And soon, she will have the loving home that she deserves, which brings enormous joy to me

 Please Help A Homeless Pet If You Can,
There Are Far Too Many Of Them
Out On The Streets Of Chicagoland Today.

by Ed Kostro



One Cat is Company

"One cat is company.
Two cats are a conspiracy. 
Three cats is an attempted takeover.
Four or more cats is a complete coup!"

Shona Steele (Australia)

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