Humane

13 06 2006

This kitten thing has been such a work in progress. The girls have been bugging me forever to get a puppy or a kitten. And a puppy? That would be like having a new kid.

Cats can fend for themselves. If we are gone during the day we won’t be given the guilt trip thing that dogs are so good at.

I really need any addition to the family to be relatively self-sufficient.

When we went to the Humane Society I tried to prepare the girls to be open to older cats too. I think it is such a bummer that so many older animals are not adopted because everyone wants a baby animal.

But I also wanted an animal that would bond with the girls.

We visited with the kitten first – and the girls were totally taken with it, of course. So was I. But I felt this undercurrent of irritation from the employee that was helping us. I’m sure it is heartbreaking to see the older animals constantly passed over.

I explained – in front of her – that we should view some other animals that might be older, too. The employee perked up and said, “Oh, I have the greatest orange tabby. He’s a year old and my favorite one here.”

She almost skipped out of the room to go get him.

He was a beautiful cat. Orange, with tye-dye rings of cream. He reminded me of a cat that we had growing up named Daisy. When she put him on the table, he immediately head butted all of us in succession. He was so, so very happy to have some attention.

But he was a tom. And a year old. And I thought he may spray all around the house even if neutered.

Maya was truly taken with him. I think she understood his heart. She is a quite a bit like him. She likes to have attention and love almost constantly. She likes to be in direct contact with someone – holding hands, sitting on my lap, or just sitting next to me. I have to bargain with her almost every night to sleep in her bed.

She saw herself in him.

And the thought that something so like her could be in a little cage in a pound just about killed her.

During our visit this cat looked over at the picture that was painted on the wall of the visiting room. It was a picture of a little yellow house with a picket fence and a tree in the front yard. He looked at it and meowed.

I looked at Maya and her eyes were full of tears. I said, “Oh Maya! What’s wrong?”

She looked at me, the tears spilled down here cheeks and she said, “He says he wants a home.”

So I cried.

And the employee, who was in the room at this time cried, too.

We talked it over and decided that although we loved the orange tabby, the kitten would probably be the best for us.

It tore Maya’s heart to pieces to have to choose.

When we walked out with the kitten in it’s little cardboard carrier I felt as if the Humane Society employee was convinced that this was not your run of the mill “hey, let’s go get a kitten” situation. The undercurrent of disapproval had evaporated in that visiting room full of tears.

I really hope he gets his yellow house, picket fence and tree. That would be the perfect ending.

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4 responses

14 06 2006
Ant

Aw damn, that wrenches the heart strings…

We had something similar when we went to get Tipsy (parent’s cat) from the Protection League place all those years ago. I basically just wanted to herd them all home and look after every single last one of them – even the nasty ones…

14 06 2006
Christine

That’s so sad.

If I lived in Washington I’d be marching my butt over there to get him right now.

14 06 2006
melissa.in.london

Aw…I second what Christine said.

I’d so be there.

Poor guy. I hope he gets his happy ending, too.

15 06 2006
Marianne

Aww, what an incredible story! My daughter and I volunteer at a no kill animal shelter, so every pet has a happy ending. I think it is wonderful that you adopted from a shelter. After doing so myself, and now being a volunteer, I will NEVER buy another animal. I will always adopt. I swear those animals love you even more.

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