Ellwood City man rescues dozens of stray cats

ELLWOOD CITY – Rick Venezie never set out to be responsible for 57 cats, but they all live happily with him and his rescued aging Pomeranian dog Max.

No matter how many cats there are, Max is the top dog.

Venezie, the creator of Kitties Found Home Inc., a 501 (c) 3 nonprofit, recently said, “Occasionally there are loud fights that last 30 seconds and scare the rest, so it’s like a pinball game in the room. but Max doesn’t pay attention to it. ”

A house full of meows, purrs, and the occasional hiss costs at least $ 560 a month in food and trash, and in recent months Venezie has had $ 3,000 in vet bills. All cats are neutered or neutered and are 1 to 9 years old.

Every cat has a name and Venezie makes sure that every cat gets attention.

Venezie currently looks after 57 cats in his home.

It all started when a stray gave birth to five kittens near his house. Venezie picked her up and named the mother cat Pregnant Mother. He was able to find a home for two kittens who promised to keep them indoors, and named the remaining three Peter, Paul, and Mary. Most cats are named for singers or musicians, while others are named for their different looks.

Chief Six Toes gets his name because he has six toes on each foot, a silly, skinny cat is called Cher, and Tommy Gray is a 30-pound gray tomcat who is tall and handsome.

“The jawbone got its name because it had a skin infection on my face and I kept peeling it off, and Tuxedo Mama got her name because she looks like she’s wearing a tuxedo and she had a few litters of kittens before I did was able to catch and repair them, “said Venezie. “When I took in these stray cats and housed them, the neighbors were happy because the cats weren’t digging up their flowers and using their flower beds for potties and spraying their garden furniture.”

Venezie continued, “When I have a kitten, I try to find a home, but if I still have it after three months I’ll give it a name and that’s home.”

After Venezie finds a stray kitten, he gives himself three months to find a home, and when the three months are up he will name it and keep the cat himself.

He found a home for 25 cats.

“Cats can do without people, but they get along much better with them,” said Venezie. “They have their own personality and will pay attention to you when you want them to.”

He hadn’t set out to take cats in, but when he saw them cold, wet, or muddy, crouched under a bush, or had kittens under someone’s porch, Venezie responded.

People were letting out strays and one day his lawyer called him and said, “There’s a starving cat outside my door and I can’t take it in.”

“I told him, ‘I don’t need cats anymore,’ and then I took it,” Venezie said. “Lots of people don’t like cats, but they need a friend and my personality is similar to that of a cat.”

As he grew up, Venezie’s mother, Millie, used to take in strays and he remembers that at any time of the day or night a stray cat was hit by a car, they took her to the vet and everyone recovered.

“My mother and I had a unique bond. She was so great at keeping her healthy,” he said.

When Millie died in 1995 she had five cats and Venezie’s brothers didn’t want them, so he took them in. The last one died in 2005.

“As a young person who works, I didn’t think it was fair to have a pet and not have time to give them the attention they deserve,” Venezie said.

To donate to the nonprofit organization, Venezie can be reached at zevini100@yahoo.com.  or Facebook or 724-333-2294

He was sales manager for the Post-Gazette for 35 years until it was no longer distributed in the area.

Venezie is the creator and star of the Ricky V Show, which airs on WXED 107.3 FM from 7 a.m. to 8 a.m. and repeats from midnight to 1 a.m. daily. It’s an hour of music with a lot of Venetian humor and energy.

After graduating from Lincoln High School in 1978, Venezie was a wrestling coach at Lincoln and Laurel High Schools for 20 years, and also coached track and field tennis for girls and boys.

Venezie can be reached at zevini100@yahoo.com, on Facebook, or 724-333-2294. Donations to his group are required and are tax deductible.