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For the friends of the Independent Cat Society, a no-kill cat shelter

Fall 2017 #155

ICS Celebrates 40 Years of Caring The ICS Cat’s Meow 40th Anniversary Gala on October 14, 2017 is now history, but it was a night to remember. Thank you to Blue Chip Casino Hotel & Spa for providing a beautiful venue and delicious food; Chicagoland Popcorn for their fabulous Popcorn Bar; and City’s Pure Ice for the wonderful Ice Sculptures! We’d also like to thank every individual and business who helped, donated and/or attended, making this a successful event. Here’s to the next 40 years! Did you miss the celebration? Check out these great photographs, and save the date for December 9 and 10, our Holiday Open House, so that you can stop by and wish the kitties a happy anniversary one more time!

Thank you to these businesses who donated silent auction or raffle items for our event: • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

AMC Theaters Aurelio’s Pizza - LaPorte Bissell Blast Camp Paintball and Airsoft Cat Trees by Max Chesterton Feed & Garden Chicago Cubs Chicago Street Theatre Daisy Soap Company Disney Figure 8 Brewing For Life Tattoo Studio Indianapolis Colts Jake’s Feed & Garden Kong Company Memorial Opera House Peepers Reading Glasses Sea Glass Fine Art Photography Shady Creek Winery South Bend History Museum

Upcoming Events, Tributes, and much more inside!

Calendar of Events


Published for the friends of the Independent Cat Society, Inc. PO Box 735, Westville, IN 46391 (219) 785-4936 Web: Email: Facebook: INCatSociety The Independent Cat Society, Inc., founded in 1977, is a non-profit, no-kill cat shelter on US Rt 6 at the Porter/LaPorte County Line Road in Westville, Indiana. Our mission is to rescue, shelter, adopt, and promote the spaying and neutering of cats in our Northwest Indiana and Chicagoland community. Adoption hours: Friday, 5:30 pm - 7:30 pm Saturday, 10:00 am - 4:00 pm Sunday, 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm Others by appointment. Please call (219) 785-4936. About our Adoption Fees Include: Spay/neuter, vet exam, feline leukemia and FIV test; ageappropriate vaccinations; parasite treatment; tattoo ID/microchip; 30 Day No-Cost Pet Insurance; Hills Science Diet coupon; and free postadoption participating vet visit. Please check our website or shelter for monthly adoption specials! Board of Directors: President: Jocelyn Vereb Vice-President: Paulette Gonzalez Recording Secretary: Diana Richie Corresponding Secretary: Kay Vazquez Treasurer: Natalie Cebulski Board Members: Diana Foster Beth Hayden Lori Hlinsky Jennifer Stall

November 25 Dunes Cat Fanciers Show 8:00am - 5:00pm Lake County Fairgrounds, Crown Point, IN

November 28 Giving Tuesday The holidays are right around the corner, and we invite you to kick it off with ICS on Giving Tuesday, an all-day online event!

December December 9-10 Holiday Open House 10:00am - 4:00pm Saturday; 1:00pm - 4:00pm Sunday Drop off book donations for the Book Sale and enjoy holiday cheer! ICS Shelter, Westville, IN

December 17 Gift Wrapping at Barnes and Noble 12:00pm - 5:00pm Banes and Noble, Valparaiso, IN

January Mid-January 2018 Sweetheart Contest Commences Check the website, Facebook, and Mewsletter for info on the contestants

January 20-21 ICS Abridged Book Sale 10:00am - 4:00pm Saturday; 11:00am - 4:00pm Sunday Contact the shelter to drop off donations Valparaiso Moose Lodge, 108 Indiana Ave.

February Sweetheart Month! Throughout February, vote on your favorites – $1 = 1 vote

March March 3 Sweetheart Day Valparaiso Moose Lodge, 108 Indiana Ave. The winner of the 2018 Contest will be determined today! Join us for a wonderful day of crafts, food, fun, and your favorite ICS kitties 2

President’s Message Happy Fall! It’s hard to believe the holidays are upon us already! Our Cat’s Meow 40th Anniversary Gala is now history, but it was a big success and I hope that all of you who attended enjoyed it, and we thank you for your support. Our popular Fall Yard Sale was also quite successful! All of our events directly benefit the cats and kittens at ICS by providing the funds needed to pay for food, litter vet care, medication and all the expenses needed to properly care for our kitties. Please see our list of Upcoming Events – especially our annual Holiday Open House on December 9th and 10th! We hope to Fiona looking official in her “uniform.” see you! While it has been a very busy year, and “kitten season” has never really ended, it has also been gratifying to look back on all the kitties we’ve been able to save, and all who have found homes so far this year. Through October 2017, 256 cats and kittens have been adopted (70 since our last Mewsletter in late August!). We are so thankful to all of you who have chosen to give an ICS kitty the purr-ever home he/she deserves. November is “Adopt a Senior Cat” month, so we want you to know that our kitties are “Aged to Purrfection”, so please consider giving an older kitty a home. Our adoption fee for cats 5 years and over is $50 for the month of November. On a sad note, we also lost several long-term residents this year. As a no-kill shelter, every cat we save is assured that he or she will never have to be alone for the rest of his/her natural life. Sadly, some never find that perfect adopter, but are loved and cared for by all ICS volunteers and staff, as if they were their own. It is especially difficult to lose them and we will always have a special place in our hearts for these great cats who spent their lives with us: Orphan Annie (16), Azurbajan (12), Twix (20), Flower (12), Farafalla (20) and Bjork (16). Finally, we want to pay tribute to the late David Witter Jones of California who was a supporter of ICS, and as a great cat and animal lover, generously provided funds for ICS and several other non-profit animal organizations across the country, in his Will. His bequest is very much appreciated as we continue our mission to rescue, shelter, adopt, and promote spaying and neutering of cats. On behalf of all ICS kitties and volunteers, Fiona and I wish you all a Purrfect Thanksgiving, a Meowy Catmas and a Happy Mew Year! Thank you all for your support throughout the year! Thank you all for your continued support! Jocelyn Vereb, ICS Board President with Fiona, ICS “Office Manager”

Spay/Neuter Resources ICS assisted spay/neuter vouchers are available at the ICS shelter on Saturdays from 10 AM-4PM and Sundays from 1-4 PM. (Others hours may be available by appointment only). After purchase (cash/check/credit card), call one of the clinics below to schedule an appointment: • • • • • •

McAfee Animal Hospital (Valparaiso): 219-462-5901 – $115 Westchester Animal Clinic (Chesterton): 219-926-1194– $65 Coyne Veterinary Center (Portage): 219763-3311 –$65 All Creature Features (LaPorte): 219-393-3558 – $85 Gast Animal Hospital (Valparaiso): 219-759-7387 – $110 Maple City Animal Hospital (LaPorte): 219-324-0055 – $116

Dr. Anderson’s Feline Reduction Center has a low-cost clinic on Saturdays in Beverly Shores. The scheduling number is 219-861-9006. Other local options: • • • • • •

Neuter Scooter: Pet Neutering and Adoption: www. (DeMotte) ABC Clinic: (Granger) The Estelle Marcus Animal Clinic: www. or (219) 924-7140 (Munster) PAWS Chicago: The Lurie Spay/Neuter Clinic or mobile unit, or (773) 521-7729 (Chicago) Fried’s TNR Clinic: 219-252-2872, (Michigan City)

Contact us at for information on feral/community cat spay/neuter.



from your Spokescat,Monica

Have you thought of the perfect gift for all of your friends and loved ones this holiday season? No? Well, Monica, our Sponsor-A-Cat spokescat, is here to help. Anyone on your list this year can receive something really special – the gift of knowing they have helped a shelter cat feel happy and comfortable while waiting for his or her forever home. That’s right, sponsorships can be gifted to anyone you know and love. As you fill out the form below, just indicate that your sponsorship is a gift, and let us know where to send the special card and photograph of your loved one’s new sponsored kitty. We’ll do the rest.

Monica, your Spokescat

Donations and memberships can be gifted as well! Clip the form on the back page of this Mewsletter to set up a gift of a donation or membership for someone special in your life. Monica, and all of us at ICS, thank you for all you do to support ICS and the Sponsor- A-Cat program. Happy holidays!







I want to Sponsor-A-Cat from the Independent Cat Society

I have enclosed a check for:

__________ $180 for one year of Sponsor-A-Cat

__________ $15 for the first month of Sponsor-A-Cat. I pledge to send $15 each month to Sponsor-A-Cat

__________ I pledge to send the amount that fits my budget and feels “right” to Sponsor-A-Cat each month Please mark “SAC” on your envelope and check memo. The sponsor will receive a photo and biography of his or her Sponsor-A-Cat. Name of sponsor_____________________________________________ Is this a gift sponsorship? _______________ Address_________________________________________________ City______________________________________ State_______ ZIP__________ Telephone _______________________________________ Month of sponsor’s birthday______________________________ email address_______________________________________ Clip and mail to: Independent Cat Society, Inc., PO Box 735, Westville, IN 46391 4

ICS 2018 Elections It’s time once again to bring in new voulnteers to serve on the ICS Board of Directors. This year, there are four positions open:

Full descriptions of the duties for all members and officers within the nine-person Board of Directors can be found in our bylaws, located on our website at

• Vice President • Corresponding Secretary • Two at-large positions

Board candidates will be introduced to the membership during the regularly scheduled November board meeting on November 7, 2017, held at Gelsosomo’s Pizza in Chesterton at 6:00pm. Elections will be held in a general membership meeting on Monday, November 27, 2017, at 6:00pm at the Valparaiso Public Library.

The preliminary ballot includes the following candidates: Vice President Paulette Gonzalez Recording Secretary Kay Vazquez Member at large (2 available seats) Diana Foster Jennifer Stall Would you like to add your name to this list? Contact the Nominations Committee (chairperson, Staci Trekles) at shelter@, and provide us with a brief description of your qualifications. We are always looking for new members of our organization, and hope you will take this opportunity to participate in the important work of board service. Note that you must be an ICS member in good standing in order to serve on the board. Please see the back page of this newsletter or visit our website at to start or renew your membership.

Cleocatra says - get out the vote!

Ask Ollie by Viktoria Voller Dear Ollie,

and central nervous system depression to pets if eaten in large quantities. Cats are especially sensitive to this, but my cat is never under a table – she likes to be on top, but only when no one is watching.

Is it O.K. if I brag just a little? I’ve been doing quite a lot of wishing this past week. And, like a canine miracle, my wish was granted. Little “Sticky Fingers” is coming home for Thanksgiving dinner. “Sticky Fingers” is a tiny girl child human, the three year-old granddaughter of my human. When she was two she dropped all her food on the floor. Oh boy, I hope she still does that, so that I know just where to sit on Thanksgiving Day... Welcome to Thanksgiving dinner little “Sticky Fingers!” I have staked out my spot and it’s not under my pet parents’ seats.

In the kitchen, when there’s baking and cooking activities, she won’t give me raw dough because if ingested, an animal’s body heat causes the dough to rise in his stomach. As it expands, the pet may experience vomiting and certainly bloating which may become lifethreatening. Thankfully, I have never “risen,” so to speak. Holiday cakes are off the menu, too, because if the cake includes raw eggs, they could contain salmonella bacteria that may lead to food poisoning. With all that bad stuff behind us I’m still taking a chance on “Sticky Fingers.” Under “Sticky Fingers’” chair will be the best seat in the house Thanksgiving Day, and it’s all mine.

This year, she will be sitting with the adults and eating some very serious Thanksgiving dinner including turkey, turkey and much more turkey. I don’t care if it’s roasted, basted, fried or barbecued as long as it’s turkey. I look for a boneless and well cooked nibble.

Laddie, labrador/border collie mix Hebron, Indiana

Why not, you ask? Because they read all the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) stuff that comes in the mail with all of those address labels. My man-human never drops food and never, never feeds us dogs under the table. The ASPCA says that’s a “no, no.” My woman human always reads everything they send, but makes a few exceptions and will slip me something because it is, after all, Thanksgiving.

So Laddie, Was there a question in your letter? I didn’t think so. Therefore, without a question, there’s no answer. Instead, I send to you and all my readers’ fond remembrances, heartfelt appreciation and warm thoughts for a fabulous holiday. May every dog, cat, human, and other creature that reads this column have their very own “Sticky Fingers” eating dinner with them on Thanksgiving Day.

I expect that since she carefully read the ASPCA “Thanksgiving Safety Tips” pamphlet, the turkey won’t be undercooked because that may contain salmonella bacteria. She won’t give us stuffing because it may contain sage, onion, or other things that contain essential oils and resins that can cause gastrointestinal upset

Ollie Ollie writes with his human Viktoria Voller, Board president, Humane Society of Northwest Indiana, 219-464-8124 5

Memorials & Tributes

August - October, 2017

In memory of all the kitties that became beloved pets, from Sharon Jokantas

In loving memory of Nancy Rudnick Larson, a great supporter of animals, from Leonore Barugh, Carol Bartuzik, Elizabeth & MIchale Cook, Carole Dusza, Lin Dowling, Carla Pfeffer, Jane Stachowski, and Ray & Joann Stanley

In memory of Loretta McDowell, from Philip McDowell In memory of Molly, from Evelyn Hutton

In loving memory of Pat Van Blaircom, gifted crafter and friend of ICS, from Computer Services Inc., Debra Davies, Gast Animal Hospital, Terry Kuss, Karen Land, Maria Padilla, Janice Topp, and Doris & Russell Van Blaircom

In memory of Walter Witt, from Mary Witt In memory of Russell Reberg, from Edward & Sandra Collins In memory of Robert Resetar, from Donna & Alan Resetar

In memory of Jean Luchene and Bobbie Purcell, from Leslie Luchene

In memory of Misty, from Doris Baker

In memory of Freeway from Donna Frey

In memory of Popcorn and Indigo, from Tommy & Shirley Bryant

In memory of Tippy Jay beloved cat of Jane Stachowski, from Kathleen Stachowski and Chris Barns

In memory of Greg Fleischman, from Sue Ogg, Carol Albrecht, and the staff at At Nature’s Door

In memory of Mom and Dad, from Martin Gonzales

In memory of Sherril Mirkin, from Marcine Todd

In memory of Boo Kleckner - 23 years wasn’t long enough, from Tom and Nancy Kleckner

In memory of Natalia Albrecht, our beautiful and beloved Birman, from Wayne and Carol Albrecht

In memory of Jean Luchene and Bobbie Purcell, from Leslie Luchene

In memory of Jim Jasperson, who, with his late wife, Diana Vollmer, supported ICS for many years.

In memory of Casey, our little black stray who we had 15 years and suddenly passed away - we will miss your wakeup call in the morning, from Brenda Palla

In honor of my cat Sissy, from Wendy Trost In honor of Phyllis and Dennis Brandy’s 50th wedding anniversary, from Gary & Beverly Overmyer

In memory of Ted and Dolores Russ, my loving and kind parents and animal lovers, from Diane Carpenter

In honor of Dr. Kylene Huler, great lover of animals and tireless supporter of ICS, from Jason & Melissa Petrovich, and all of the volunteers at ICS

In memory of Sean James Cairns, from Claudette Cairds-Boyd In memory of Aiden, my baby, from Lori Jacobs In memory of Inky, adopted from ICS 17 years ago, from Eugene & JoAnn Tylicki

In Tribute to a Kind Man Greg Fleishman was a fighter; he defied the odds. When diagnosed with stage 4-lung cancer and given six months to get his life in order, Greg managed to keep on living his life and caring for himself and his cats for over 3-1/2 years, including the two foster cats at the right with special needs, who recently found a new home. For Greg, a Portage businessman, it was always about the cats. In addition to Greg’s work at ICS, some of it physically hard and nonstop, Greg had his own cat companions. Greg’s nineteen-year-old cat, Caesar, was by Greg’s side until Greg’s passing. Caesar is not in great health, and it will not be long until they will be reunited. As volunteer and former board member, Greg was a good friend to ICS and kind to many, always willing to help others, as well as the many felines in need that crossed his path. Currently, his employees and Greg’s business partner will care for Greg’s storefront cat, Blanca. Emily and Blue, cat sisters, are also at the store and hopefully will be adopted together into a loving home. Greg’s also had five outside cats that he cared for and that reside in his workshop. Greg wanted them to stay where they felt comfortable and Greg’s friends are working to help that continue. Greg Fleishman was a hero in the cat world. Greg worked tirelessly so cats, those he knew and those he didn’t, could live without fear, hunger, or abuse. Greg Fleishman’s life and his work made a difference for cats and people. Thank you, Greg. 6

A Tribute to Little Orphan Annie Here at ICS, we always know that someday, our time with a special cat with have to part. Whether that is due to adoption or passing on the Rainbow Bridge, we know in our hearts that we cannot keep our favorites with us forever.

Over the years, Annie developed medical conditions, making her case very special. She had a unusual condition called feline hyperesthesia, which caused her to have “twitchy” back and tail muscles, and frequently caused her pain. She would even sometimes attack her own tail in an attempt to stop that pain, caused by a nerve condition similar to epilepsy. While not well understood as a disease, our veterinarians helped Annie through various courses of prescription treatments until, as she grew older, her condition grew less severe.

Still, it is always a shock when we lose a kitty we have grown to love over many years. Anyone who has visited the shelter in the past fifteen years or so is likely to know of Orphan Annie – or, just “Annie,” or sometimes even “Annie Banannie.” Annie was a fixture, a regular kitty who walked the halls and did whatever she pleased. She had spunk, she had attitude, and yet she was sweet as she could be. You could find her just about anywhere in the shelter, as she would frequently sneak into other rooms and make herself comfortable in a quiet corner somewhere. The other cats never complained, and she never started a fight. She was just Annie, and she ran the show.

Some of you might even remember Annie as a columnist in this very Mewsletter, the “author” of Catty Comments. With the help of her human interpreter, Cate Amador, Annie dished all the latest gossip, Entertainment Weekly-style. Annie was also an ICS Sweetheart and made regular appearances in pictures on our website.

Later in life, Annie also developed diabetes, and was on insulin several times a day. She received both foster care and in-shelter treatment, and our volunteers and staff always tirelessly made sure that she was comfortable and healthy. She was a favorite of almost everyone who worked at ICS. We will miss Annie’s funny meow and her silly antics around the shelter. She was a very special cat, and we all loved her dearly.

Corporate Sponsorships Financial Institutions 1st Source Bank Allegius Credit Union Northern Indiana Federal Credit Union Grants Banfield Charitable Trust Best Friends Animal Society Bissell Foundation John W. Anderson Foundation Petco Foundation Porter County Community Foundation Porter County Master Gardeners TransCanada Corporation Unity Foundation of LaPorte County Matching Gifts ArcelorMittal Matching Gifts Charity Gift Certificates CNA Foundation Discover Financial Services JC Penney Change for the Better Campaign State Employee’ Community Campaign Truist United Way of Greater LaPorte County

Local American Community Bank, Munster Aurelio’s Pizza, LaPorte Blue Chip Casino, Hotel & Spa, Michigan City BoyConn Printing, Valparaiso Cat Trees by Max, Hebron Chesterton Feed & Garden, Chesterton Chicagoland Popcorn, Merrillville City’s Pure Ice, LaPorte DeVries Tire Company, Michigan City Eley-Graham Financial Advisory Services, Merrillville Flanagin’s Bulk Mail Service, Valparaiso Jake’s Feed & Garden, Valparaiso KarahTess Clothing & Lettering, LaPorte Kuraray, Merrillville Moose Lodge – 1357, Valparaiso Puntillo & Crane Orthodontics, Crown Point St. Stanislaus School, Michigan City 2nd Chance Games Movies & Music, Portage Westville Elementary School, “You Can Make A Difference Club”, Westville

Racing Capital Cat Fanatics, Indianapolis Wells Fargo Advisors Participating Veterinarians All Creature Features, LaPorte Arbor View Animal Hospital, Valparaiso Ark of the Dunes Animal Hospital, Chesterton Coyne Veterinary Services, Portage Gast Animal Hospital, Valparaiso LaPorte Animal Hospital, LaPorte Maple City Animal Hospital, LaPorte McAfee Animal Hospital, Valparaiso Michigan City Animal Hospital, Michigan City New Carlisle Animal Hospital, New Carlisle Westchester Animal Clinic, Porter Vale Park Animal Hospital, Valparaiso

Other Disney Event Wines - Benefit Wines Health and Hospitality Corp of Marion Co Network for Good

If we have inadvertently omitted anyone, please write, email, or call us so we can include them in the next newsletter.


Independent Cat Society PO Box 735 Westville, IN 46391

Non-Profit Organization US Postage


Valparaiso, IN Permit No. 134

Upcoming Events • Dunes Cat Fanciers Show

November 25, Lake County Fairgrounds, Crown Point

• Giving Tuesday


November 28, Independent-Cat-Society

• Holiday Open House INCatSociety

December 9-10, ICS Shelter

• Gift Wrapping at Barnes and Noble

December 17, Barnes and Noble Books, Valparaiso

• Sweetheart Contest Time!

Beginning in January

• ICS Abridged Book Sale

January 20-21, Valparaiso Moose Lodge

• Sweetheart Day

March 3, Valparaiso Moose Lodge

If you’d like to receive the Mewsletter via email, let us know at

Can you help the Independent Cat Society cats? Become a Member! Annual Dues:

Donate or Volunteer! ______ I am donating $______ for the care of the cats and kittens.


$1000 Corporation

______ I am donating $______ to the building fund.


$500 Platinum

______ I will help groom cats at the shelter.


$100 Gold Star


$50 Family


$25 Individual


$1­­0 Student

______ I am donating $______ to the TNR/Assisted Spay & Neuter Fund. ______ I will help at fundraising events. ______ I will be a foster parent. ______ I will donate my cat-themed artwork or crafts for fundraising events. ______ I will bake for fundraising events. ______ I will make adoption follow-up telephone calls. ______ I will help cats get good homes by becoming an adoption counselor. ______ I will help take care of the grounds and maintain the shelter. ______ I will distribute flyers for fundraisers.


$10 Senior ______ This is a gift donation/membership contribution.

­­Name______________________________________ Address_____________________ City______________ State_______ ZIP__________ ____This is a new address. ____ Do not send a “thank you” note. Phone____________________ email___________________________ Clip and send to: Independent Cat Society, Inc., PO Box 735, Westville, IN 46391

ICS Mewsletter Fall 2017  

The Fall 2017 edition of the Independent Cat Society Mewsletter.

ICS Mewsletter Fall 2017  

The Fall 2017 edition of the Independent Cat Society Mewsletter.