John and Karen Barger with grew up on a farm and have lived with having cats and kittens around life. Growing up on a farm, however, had its up and downs when it came to these animals. They will always remember the joy of a mama cat carrying her kittens across the yard to find a better place to raise them. They remember the sweet nuzzle of a fuzzy feline after a day working in the field as they begged for attention. These were the farm cats. They were their pets and the loves of their lives. Being farm cats, however, there was also the other side of the coin. They also remember the horror of finding their pets on the road dead from someone who just did a hit and run. They remember hearing the howl of they coyotes at night and could only hope and pray that they would wake in the morning and see their furry friend alive. They also remember the stories of people cruel enough to use these animals as target practice.

Around 2002-2003 they started fostering and volunteering for other organizations and about 3 years later it was taken to the next level as they moved into the house John's Grandmother and Grandfather once lived in. Unexpectedly the farm came stocked with 4 female cats and 1 tomcat. Before long the population doubled, then tripled. Each year added more to the count. This is a prime example of why they promote the spay and neuter of pets as soon as possible. If you can touch them and can grab them - get them fixed. If they are feral - get someone in to catch them and get them fix. There are spay/release neuter programs out there that will do this at little or no cost to you. All of those cats are now fixed.

Again, they encountered the joy of having the cats around, but, they also had to live with the other side of the coin. They buried numerous pets as they found them on the road. They spent nights searching for pets only to find that they were gone forever. They saw the animals get sick and die for no reason. Enough was enough. Even though the cats initially were not their responsibility, they became their family and they were going to be treated that way.

John and Karen spent thousands upon thousands of dollars over the next few years caring for these animals. They were not a shelter or a rescue, just two people with two big hearts. It became official, however, in the start of 2011 that they had to become a rescue. They needed to buy a home and find a place that they could help the shelter kitties and also help out the community.

John and Karen are still working on the "project" they started so many years ago, but they are doing it with open hearts.
Fisher Valley Felines endeavors to be a strong presence in the community, working to increase awareness of animal issues. We strongly advocate spaying and neutering of both feral and pet cats to reduce the overabundance of unwanted kittens and improve the general health of adult cats. We hope for the day when all animals will know what it means to be wanted, loved and cared for.