I have received this email from longstanding OCICBW... reader, Mark Brunson (Grandmère Mimi received the same request):

My older cat, Katzie, has had to have emergency care - x-rays and catheterization. His urethra blocked and he couldn't urinate and was in great pain. This has happened before, and the vet has confirmed that this is likely to happen throughout the rest of his life, off and on, and it may require surgery - a long name with "cysto" in it somewhere - to basically transform his urinary tract into a female's urinary tract, opening the ureters wider to allow the crystals in the urine to flow out.

As of now, he's home, having been catheterized and cleared. He's not showing any signs of pain, but also hasn'turinated since he got home, so, naturally, I'm worried.

The difficulty is the cost of the care - for the past two-day stay, it comes to $281. I've been able to pay most of it, but it's coming out of the money saved for my property tax, which will be due December 20. The full surgery will cost (an additional) $400. I'm writing the two of you because you have far wider readership than I could hope for, and are more forthright and, well, crusading than I am. I wind up apologizing for having bothered everyone by living and saying "You know, don't worry about it. I'm sure I'll be fine." But I won't be fine this time. This is serious, and I need folks in my corner. I've checked around - our priest is out of country, and he's the one with the discretionary fund, though it's tiny. There are no charities (I'm aware of) who have anything right now, and nothing for someone's pet care. I'm now, officially, pulling in $217.50 a week, which is the legal requirement that I be left with in my pay after garnishment, being minimum wage X 30.

I have a PayPal account now through this email address. I'll take any help anyone can give, if you'll raise the rallying cry. Even a few bucks helps.

Thanks, in advance, for anything - prayers, advice, whatever.



COMMENT: I am so convinced that this is a perfectly genuine cry for help that I have sent my own donation taken out of my meagre unemployment benefit. And yes, I am trying to embarrass you into donating in this instance. Mark has been a good friend to me, and OCICBW..., over the past four years or so and if we can't help our friends when they are in trouble then all our charity is worth nothing.

You can send money to Mark through PayPal using his email address:



  1. Let me just chime in here and say, yes, do help if you can. I’ve had two cats over the years who had that difficulty and it’s just dreadful but it can be treated.

    (Poor, poor kitty!)

  2. Is there a way to do this and not have to create a PayPal account?

    I do not want a PayPal account. I donated to the other appeals that we have had, on PayPal, and without an account. Is this different?

  3. To whom it may concern:

    Your comment, though perfectly valid, could have a detrimental effect of the charitable giving of this, and other, communities. Therefore, until an acceptable alternative is available, and applying the same utilitarian principles as when I decide on which political party to vote for at an election, I have decided not to let it through.