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Sunday, July 29, 2012

More Shelter Cats


Before the rest of this post I wanted to update you on the cats I wrote about for Adopt-A-Cat Month. Happily Ringo and Bingo found a home together since I took their pictures as did Spirit, the beautiful blue tabby. 

Ringo & Bingo
Unfortunately Twix, Smooshie, Blossom and Chum remain at the shelter. Sometimes I don’t understand why certain cats remain behind although I know that personal preferences are unique and unpredictable. 

For instance, I realize that Twix and Smooshie may not seem “flashy” to some but to me they do stand out. Twix has those remarkably brilliant green eyes and splashes of gold in her coat. Smooshie is a red tabby so he naturally stands out.

Blossom and Chum are both longhair cats so maybe that makes some people hesitate but it shouldn’t. They are both such lovey-doveys that brushing them should be easy. All four of these cats are so lovable and playful that they would be great cats for any household. 

Let’s hope that they, as well as the other five cats that are still there find a forever home soon.

Today I want to present you with three cats I met at the shelter this week. I’m showing you all three because they all have similar attractions. They are young cats, bi-colors (meaning one color plus white), shorthair and have unique personalities. None of them had names listed for them so I will be referring to them by names I’ve boldly given to them.

Denver, named because he had a Broncos blanket in his cage when I saw him, is a cream tabby and white neutered male shorthair cat. He’s only about a year old so he’s still a bit of a kitten inside. He was a stray and lost part of one ear to frostbite but he is front-declawed now so he’ll need to be an indoor only cat. Though he didn’t get up the entire time I was taking pictures he was enthralled with the string on my camera. He’s obviously very playful but I think he’ll be a great lap warmer.
Mae; she looks a lot bigger in her picture than she really is

Mae is a black and white shorthair, spayed female who was also a stray. She is about one year old, front-declawed and quite a character. She has that look in her eye that says she is the boss and people are going to be her slave. I just love her quirky behavior and hope she finds the right home. Again she was taken by the string on my camera and really went for it as you’ll see in the video.


 Finally we have Dove, a blue and white shorthair, spayed female who is about 7 months old. She came to the shelter as a kitten and has been here way too long for such a beautiful girl. I found some inexplicable quality in her that spoke to me. I kept thinking of Bluebird as I stroked her fur even though she is nothing like my beloved girl. I don’t know what it is………….Anyway, Dove is a little shy but once you pet her she comes out of her shell and just soaks up your attention. She is extremely loving and needs someone who will smother her with their love.

I hope that these young “kids” are going to find a home soon. They shouldn’t grow up in a shelter no matter how caring the personnel are. They need a home life and a family to give them tender loving care.

These three cats are currently staying at the Story County Animal Shelter. Please come and meet them and the other cats looking for homes.

The shelter is located at:         975 W Lincoln Highway
Nevada, IA 50201
Ph: (515) 382-3338

Their hours are:                       M-F 11 am to 4 pm
                                                Closed on holidays and weekends

You can see more of the pets awaiting adoption at the shelter website and updates on their Facebook page.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

A New Generation

Funny how a day can pass. Today I found myself sorting through the many harnesses in a rainbow of colors, changing tags and reassigning them to my present cats. Each one holds a memory so precious, so far from my reach. A tear came to my eye as I set Rainbow’s aside, unable to reassign it.

The reason for this sorting evolved from a biography, of sorts, that I am writing about Mewdy Blue. As I typed in his age, 15, I realized sadly that someone has to step up and take over his activities. He is a local celebrity in that he started as a show cat early in life doing very well and developing into quite an accomplished cat.

Mewdy Blue
Eventually he moved into the agility ring and won the regional award. With his partner, Lady Butterfly, he became a pet therapy cat visiting youth shelters, adult day care and long-term care facilities to help brighten the day of many people. He has appeared on television, in newspapers and in person many times. He even acted as a guinea pig for veterinary students learning to do physical exams as well as giving demonstrations of his tricks and agility skills.

So now that Mewdy Blue is ready to retire from the limelight who can possibly fill in for him?

I planned to visit my mother in her assisted living apartment so I packed up Gooseberry, his new (reassigned) harness, leash and carrier and headed out. The first part of the day Goose talked and talked and talked about the situation (I know he’s got some Siamese in him) and looked everywhere for the perfect hiding place. When he’d finally settled down a bit I put on the leash and took him out into the hallway for a walk.
Gooseberry, ready for anything

You know that boy actually walked on the leash?! I’m not saying that cats don’t walk on leashes just that he has never done so before. The couple of times I’ve taken him outside to judge his reaction he panicked and raced for the door. Remembering that experience I had thought that an inner hallway might be easier on him. His first outing no other people were in the hallway but we could hear their “noises” from behind closed doors.

Goose was nervous but he did a great job of following me down the hallway. If he balked a little I simply pointed up ahead and he followed my finger. A simple stroking of his head was all the reward he needed. It wasn’t until we turned a corner and saw an air conditioner sitting on a cart that he decided he’d had enough. He took one look at that contraption and told me in no uncertain terms that we were going back to the apartment. No mechanical monsters for him!
Goose, packing for his first show

I left him in the apartment with my mother for a couple of hours then we went down for the obligatory early supper (who eats at 4:30 anyway??). Afterwards I took Goose out for another hallway carousing. This time other people appeared from out of the elevator and he decided it wasn’t fun anymore. He seemed comfortable as long as I held him in my arms so he got a little experience around other people that way.

So my little buddy, Gooseberry, is on his way to learning how to be a pet therapy cat. I’m sure with a little more exposure to different environments, other people and more leash-walking he’ll be up to the challenge. Who knows? It might even improve his chances at cat shows. And the day that started with a tear turned out to be rewarding.