Wednesday, November 28, 2012

The Avio Arc

This posting brings you an update on the warm and fuzzy, four footed (mostly) side of Avio Vineyards. 

We've always had a passion for animal of all kinds.  Since moving to Sutter Creek in 2004, we have rescued or acquired over 70 animals, ranging from guinea hens and peacocks to goats and llamas (and almost everything in between!)  Many of them are still with us, some I’ve gifted to friends, and some have passed away.  Since the beginning of this year, 8 of my beloved animals have passed on, along with many tears.  But as with the cycle of life, although we have lost many of our cherished companions, we have opened our hearts and our doors to many new furry/feathered friends, and welcomed them onto the “Avio Ark.” 

Earlier in the year we started fostering kittens for A-PAL (our local animal shelter) to make them more sociable, thus, more adoptable.  The first litter was of 3 little babies, who barely had their eyes open.  We absolutely enjoyed raising them, as kittens bring such joy and spontaneity to a home.  We wound up keeping one of them for ourselves, and we absolutely adore her.  Then on Sept 6, I saw  two kittens at the front of our property, just inches away from a very busy road.  I tried to catch them, but to no avail.  We did finally trap both of them, and they were feral.  Still too small for solid food, we had to bottle feed them for a while, and attempt to get their sickly and malnourished little bodies back to health.  We were able to get them healthy, and now we are looking for a special home for them both.  

Knowing that I never wanted to have unwanted kittens on my property, I made an effort to trap all of the feral cats in our vineyard, and have them spayed/neutered.  A-PAL pays for all feral cats to be spayed/neutered, so I rented a trap, and began trapping!  I caught 3 cats, 2 females and 1 male.  The two female cats look exactly like one of my kittens, and the other kitten looks exactly like the male we captured. After each surgery, we kept them in a large cage for a day to allow them to heal in a quiet place with plenty of food and water.   Subsequently, all three were released back into the vineyard where we had trapped them.

If you live in Amador County, please know that if you have feral cats in or around your property, it costs you nothing to have them surgically altered so they stop reproducing.  All you need to do is contact A-PAL at 209-223-0410 and they will give  you the details.  Wherever you live, I'm betting your community has a similar program, as well.  Every critter deserves a chance at life -- no matter how "unwanted" they may seem.

Of course I hope that by the time you read this, our kittens will have found their forever homes, but if anyone is interested in meeting my two "formerly" feral kittens for adoption, please send me an email at  They are incredibly cute, extremely loving, very attached to people, and have two distinctly different personalities.  The one thing they do have in common though, is the need for a loving, indoor home, where they will be cherished - and where they can reciprocate, for the rest of their lives. 

Lisa Watson
Avio Vineyards