Today’s Guest Post comes from Thirtysomething Belle who will be joining us for further guest posts in the future!:
So, it seems my reputation as a cat lady is well and truly thriving as the years go by. The ‘crazy’ part is debatable…
I’ve have always been animal obsessed. During childhood, I was surrounded by cats, rabbits, guinea pigs and hamsters. I’d spend hours in the garden reading with a cat or two on my lap whilst my many rabbits ran around happily digging holes and chomping on my mums flowerbeds.
Within a few months of leaving home, I ended up heading to my local cat shelter and adopting an 8 year old ginger Tom cat creatively named Rusty. He was the size of a small dog and had similar characteristics too! I’d regularly find him taunting the geese in the allotments across from my house and on occasion, Rusty would bring me back ‘delightful’ gifts such as rats, frogs and the odd pigeon. Despite numerous bells on his collar, he was a keen hunter so in the end, I felt I had no choice but to try and keep him indoors as much as possible for the sake of our local wildlife.
Fast forward a few years, two babies and a house move, Rusty started to show signs of getting old. He wasn’t quite as agile as he used to be and his hunting days were well and truly over. He seemed tired and worn out. One morning in February, he went out of our back garden and never returned. I was heartbroken. I still wonder what happened to that gorgeous ginger boy but I hope he found peace.
These days, not much has changed. Our home is currently shared with 3 feline fur babies and hamster named Albert. This is a bitter sweet sentence.
A few weeks ago, we lost a much loved member of our kitty tribe. Dexter was hit by a car on the Sunday night and didn’t make it. We took him to the vets with a tiny glimmer of hope that the black bundle in front of us wasn’t really Dexter but I think in our hearts, we knew the horrible truth. The vet scanned for Dexters chip and gave us the sad news that it was indeed him. He had taken a severe impact on the road so at least there is the small blessing that he didn’t suffer for long. My emotions got the better of me as we arranged for Dexter to be cremated, the tears fell and we left him behind.
He was genuinely one of the sweetest cats I’ve ever owned – and the only one who taught himself to play ‘fetch’. Not that I appreciated this much when being woken at 5am with foam balls all over my bed and an eager cat wanting to play. Dexter was friendly and loving, wanting to cuddle anybody who happened to be on the sofa. I shall sorely miss his company and little owl like face for a long time to come.
Dexter and his brother Luther were acquired under slightly bizarre circumstances. Somebody had cruelly dumped them outside my boyfriend Adams office and they were found hiding in a bush, dangerously close to the road. When I received a picture of these two tiny little faces, I melted. I offered them a home and they quickly became part of our family. The vet gave them a once over and said they looked to be around 5 weeks old. In the coming weeks, their little personalities began to creep out, Dexter was the nosey, boisterous one and Luther, the quiet, reserved runt of the litter. I quickly became attached and loved coming home to be greeted by purrs and cat cuddles. Luther can often be found fast asleep on my 11 year old daughter, Lucies bed with her or just a few paces behind Adam who has become his favourite human!
Oscar is our eldest cat at 6 years old. He came from a litter that my mums cat had and was Lucies birthday present after she’d been asking for her very own pet for a long time! Oscar is a rather cautious cat, picking and choosing the people he trusts carefully. However once you do earn his trust, he is such a lovely, loyal boy who will cuddle happily for hours on end. His favourite place in the world is the bathroom sink. He’s given many unsuspecting visitors a shock over the years! Oscar was not a fan of the kittens initially but after a while, he came around and is happy to share his home – unless they got a bit too close, resulting a warning growl.
In an odd twist of fate, a couple of days after Dexter died, I received a picture of 3 black and white kittens from Adam. Yet again, somebody had dumped them in the office car park in the middle of the night, leaving them in a shoebox by the bins. Luckily, the 2 female kittens found a home together thanks to Adams lovely colleague and the little boy…well, he came home with us!
Lex (or Ludo…we still haven’t settled on his name) has a brilliant temperament. Curious but meek, he has settled in nicely so far and the other cats seem to be tolerating him well considering. I very much doubt that Lex will be my last feline addition and hopefully one day, I will be in a position to be able to foster cats as a few of my friends do.
I would urge anyone looking into getting a new pet to please consider your local rescue centre. Sadly, due to circumstances beyond their control and through no fault of their own, there are far too many animals in dire need of a forever home and can make the most wonderful, loyal pets if given the chance.
I would hope this goes without saying but for crying out loud – neuter your pets! It makes so angry to see these places full of unwanted animals that could of easily been prevented by a simple procedure that every responsible pet owner should be enforcing. As soon as they are old enough, get them to the vets to be neutered, chipped, flea treated, wormed and vaccinated. Until then, keep them indoors. I know many people do not bother but it is so very important and something you must consider before taking on a pet. The cost, the time, the effort involved. So rewarding but a big commitment all the same.
For further advice and re-homing enquiries in the UK, please see the links below:
Originally posted on http://www.thirtysomethingbelle.wordpress.com
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About the author:
British lifestyle blogger. Self confessed cat lady, mama of 2, lover of all things vintage, rockabilly, tattoo, food, travel, adventure and Manchester related. Based in England.