Guest Star Cat: Cecelia’s Story

The following guest story was submitted by Barbara B.:

After my last two cats passed away I decided to wait before getting another. My kids were grown and gone and with our jobs, many interests and travel, we were rarely home. After we retired I began to long for a cat. My husband however was not in favor of getting a pet. We had many discussions until his cousin took matters into her own hands. She happened upon an adoption event and fell in love with the cat we would name Cecelia after my mother. Since she had her legal limit of 6 cats, she convinced us to adopt her.

On January 4, 2020 we traveled 1.5 hours to get her. On the way home she yowled on and off and thrashed about her carrier. By the time we got home, we were nervous wrecks. I couldn’t wait to let her out. When I opened the carrier she shot out like a bullet and hid in the basement. We use our basement for storage and had shelves of records, books and boxes of stuff. We couldn’t find her so I moved her food and water into the basement and made her a bed. The liter box was already down there.

That night she came upstairs and yowled on and off all night. The next morning I was relieved to see that she had eaten her food and used her liter box. The next night she yowled all night again. We weren’t getting much sleep. My husband thought we should return her. The foster mother desperately wanted the adoption to work as CeCe had been adopted once before and returned. She was 9 months old and we were her fourth home. According to her vet records, she had been treated for ear mites and parasites at 3 months. So I think she was born to a feral cat outside. The third night she was very quiet. As long as we could sleep, I was willing to hang in there.

On the morning of day 6 she came out of the basement, walked up to us and let us pet her. She had tremendous energy and loved to play. We have an old house with front and back stairs and she loved to chase a laser up and down the stairs and throw her little mice up and down the stairs.

When the pandemic hit we were stuck at home with nowhere to go. So we showered CeCe with toys and spent 2 hours a day playing with her. She entertained us with her antics and made us laugh and helped us through that difficult time.

She was a biter. If we tried to pet her, she often bit our hands and arms. She didn’t like being touched. She also loved to attack our legs. It seemed mostly like play biting but she didn’t hold back. We both had scratches and bite marks at various stages of healing on our hands, arms and legs. She did seem to like our company though as she was always in whatever room we were in. At night when we went upstairs, she wanted to play. She would chase a laser back and forth the length of our upstairs hallway which was very long as it extended onto a second story long porch on one end and main bedroom on the other. She ran full speed about ten times before she tired. We called her “Super Cat, faster than a speeding bullet”. When we got into bed, she would jump up on a high shelf of the bookcase and sleep behind the books.

When the weather got warm, we began spending lots of time outside. I had intended for her to be an indoor cat but she wanted to come out with us. So I got a cat tent. At first she was happy to be in her tent. But then she wanted to explore. So I got a harness and leash. There was no adjustment, she learned instantly. Her walks became her favorite activity. My husband loves to walk her. She gets 2-4 per day. She drags him through the neighbor’s yards and onto their porches. We are blessed with wonderful, tolerant neighbors. Especially at night when my husband wanders about their yards with a flashlight!  Her night walks are her favorite.

It really bothered me that she didn’t walk around with her tail up and never purred. Maybe she didn’t like us? Maybe we weren’t the right family for her?

During the second year, she began occasionally walking with her tail up and letting us pet her more and sometimes purring. Best of all, she came down from the bookcase and got in bed with us. She kneaded on us, purred loudly and cuddled up close against our bodies. I called her the Velcro cat. One of the great pleasures of life is having a purring cat in bed next to you.

But she was still biting us a lot. If she saw another cat while out on a walk, she went crazy and sometimes would attack our legs. She tore holes in three pairs of my husband’s pants. One time his leg became infected and another time his hand and he needed antibiotics. And still he called her “my little baby “.

We have now had her for three years. She rarely bites anymore and they are usually very gentle bits. She now runs around with her tail up, often wants petting, and purrs when we pet her. I can say with confidence that she is a happy cat and loves us but not as much as we love her!!

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