Help Dreidel's House Cat Rescue

My house caught on fire today. Twenty of the animals in our house did not survive. Eighteen cats, a dwarf hamster, and a sugar glider died; another cat is still missing. Our hope is that she escaped out of a broken window. 

My girlfriend, Wendy, and I started a cat rescue and have been saving cats from our neighborhood. It is named Dreidel's House Cat Rescue after a young cat we lost in December. He suffered from neurological issues his whole short life, and the name is in honor of him.

We left the house this morning to buy cat food. We got a call from Wendy's daughter-in-law that our house was on fire. We raced home as quickly as we could, and saw Jacksonville Fire and Rescue Department (JFRD) on scene when we arrived. They were fighting flames and pulling animals out of the smoke filled interior of the house. The ones that showed any signs of life were treated with oxygen, a kindness that I am certain saved them.

The first cat I adopted when I got a place of my own was Joy. She was 12 years old. She passed away along with two elderly cats, Thomas and Bonnie, kittens only about 5 months old, and too many more. These were more than animals, they were the center of my every day and what gave my home life purpose. Now I have to focus on recovering from this tragedy and making the best life for my pets, my family, and myself.

To date I have amassed significant debt to care for all of my animals. Our dream was to be able to fund the rescue with donations and have it make an impact on cats in our area. Any immediate money we receive will go toward food, medical care, and supplies like cat trees and toys. Our longer term goal will be to have a rescue building of our own where we can continue our work. We are thankful for everyone that helps us through this campaign by donating and spreading the word. I will continue to rescue animals, right now I need your help. Thank you.


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Kurt Lessenthien 
Jacksonville, FL
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