Crystal was a young mother struggling to make it on her own. This past summer, for reasons beyond her control, she and her five children found themselves homeless and hungry. Thatís when a local family stepped in to help.
Crystal is a beautiful, tame Siamese cat who gave birth to her kittens in a garden shed behind a vacant house on King Street.
Nothing too unusual there. Every urban neighborhood has stray cats who, because they arenít spayed or neutered, bring more homeless kittens into the world.
But Crystalís story is unique and inspiring because of the lengths she went to to save her kittensí lives... and because of the help she got from her human friends.
Enter... the Grooms
The Groom family rescued the cats and made it their family project to care for the kittens until they were old enough to be adopted. The Groom children Shane (9) and Jaida (7) fed them, cleaned their litter box, and played with them every day. They even endured bouts of asthma and allergies from their exposure to the kittens, but kept on going.
Sadly, one of the kittens, Izel, disappeared and couldnít be found. He had always been sickly and underweight so everyone assumed the mother had taken him away to die.
Meanwhile, the four other kittens grew up and were adopted to their forever families. Their mother, Crystal, was taken into rescue at Virden Pet Network.
Then, when it seemed like the story was over, something remarkable happened. A Siamese kitten turned up near the original nest. It was Izel.
No longer the runt of the litter, he was chubby and healthy. Thatís when it became clear that Crystal hadnít taken him away to die after all. She had moved him away from the stronger kittens so she could feed and nurture him separately. So she could save all five of her offspring.
She must have hunted and delivered private meals to Izel while continuing to watch over the rest of her litter back at the nest. This brave, hard-working mother refused to give up on any of her babies, even the smallest and least likely to survive. And she did it with a little help from her friends, the Groom family -- true animal heroes.
See how Crystal's other kittens are doing in their new homes. Visit our Happy Endings page.