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Rescuing cats - a Way of Life for Eric

Story ID:5544
Written by:Suzana Margaret Megles (bio, contact, other stories)
Story type:Local History
Location:Akron Ohio USA
Person:Eric Schickendantz
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Donna Miller of the Cleveland Plain Dealer gave me permission to crosspost her very inspiring account of Eric Schickendantz, who in his life time has altered 1,000 cats! Recently, he rescued 101 cats from a foreclosed home on Lakemore. Here is the article I think people who appreciate animal lives will be happy to read. They will also come to know a little bit re a man who cares deeply about cats and the knowledge that life is important to them as it is to us.

Anonymous donor leaves 200 pounds of cat food on Lakemore cat rescuer's porch
By Donna J. Miller, Plain Dealer reporter
December 29, 2009, 8:50AM

Akron,OhioŚ Eric Schickendantz arrived home yesterday evening and found 200 pounds of cat food on his porch.

The 10, 20-pound bags were likely left by someone who read the story in the Sunday Plain Dealer about Schickendantz's rescue of 101 cats from a foreclosed house in Lakemore, just south of Akron.

Schickendantz, 62 and dubbed Katmandu Rescue, spent more than four months catching and taming the cats. He spent thousands on their veterinary care, getting them neutered, vaccinated and treated for respiratory infections.

Publicity and his e-mailed pleas for help to a network of cat rescuers brought him donations of $6,000, food and several carriers. He still spent $600 on carriers and grew a $2,000 debt.

Twenty-eight of the wildest cats are living in a shed Schickendantz built in Hartville on land owned by a friend. The shed has a cat door and a ramp to shelves and sleeping boxes, where the cats hide when he and other caregivers visit with food and water.

Schickendantz, a tribal arts collector, needs help with the cost of feeding those cats and the five timid cats who remain in his care waiting to be adopted. One of them, Yellowman, almost died of pneumonia after being placed in the Hartville shelter.

Schickendantz estimates that he has caught and neutered nearly 1,000 cats in the last 50 years, finding homes for some and releasing the wild ones in areas where someone agrees to feed them.

Reach Schickendantz by e-mail, or 330-864-2879.