Here we go .. the second guest post about George!
(by our twitter friend Alex !)
This post is about George coming to live with me after Dad had to move to a place that had allergies and he couldn’t take George along. It’s also a story of transition that was absolutely the least heartbreaking surrendering of a pet when there’s no other choice. That had to do with my dad’s concern for this tuxie who’d stolen his heart.
My last post was on George’s horrible early life and how he came to be rescued and adopted. While my posts won’t always be about him, I will use my first few to explain this unusual feline and the mark he has made on all our lives, as well as one for “dem eyes!”
To summarize from before, George was one of 90 cats rescued in a two-county seizure for neglect and cruelty. He nearly died; many of them did. But he beat the medical odds against him and recovered to the point where he could be placed for adoption. He was estimated to be 1.5 to 2 years old at time of adoption, based on his teeth. So based on taking the top end of that age estimate, he will be four years old in October, 2015. But he might only be 3.5; I took the upper estimate.
My dad originally adopted him because Dad was sad and lonely. My mum had recently passed away and he also couldn’t forget the little calico kitten he’d rescued up north. Adopting a cat was constantly on his mind and while he saw a few calicos the day George was adopted, his heart went to the tuxie with one green and one blue eye (although strangely, I was the only one who noticed that at first). It was really George putting a spell on my dad so he come into our family.
So, things went really well. George and my dad were fast friends. When dad said it was bedtime, he’d head to the bathroom and come out to find George always sitting at the end of his bed. While my dad lived relatively close to my older sister and I (20-25 km) we couldn’t always be there. I invited him to move in here, as my folks had done for my grandmother, and he was thinking it over. He was 86 then, and while spry and alert, he had a few issues. Like, he couldn’t cook. Washing machine? What’s that?
“What about George?” he asked. “What about him?” I asked in reply. I reminded him of the promise he had had extracted at the time of his adoption. ‘If anything happens to me, one of you will take George, right?” I told him of course George would be cared for. “What about Molly?” She’ll love him the minute she sees him, dad.
My younger sister, who is a 6-hour round trip away by car came to see dad one day and before we knew it, the flat was up for sale, she and her husband had started renovations on a suite for him that included his own bathroom, lounge and sitting areas. He was excited to spend more time with his youngest daughter and grandson, whom he rarely saw because of the distance. Within a week, the flat sold and dad was moved in here, complete with George, and his plan was to stay five weeks to “transition George.” George couldn’t go with my dad because my nephew is allergic to cats.
I prepared a room for him, and the move happened. George didn’t need five weeks. More like five days. The first day he arrived, he met Molly. They ran into the living room, jumped up on the couch, and stared at each other. Molly tried to sniff him and George lifted his left paw and smacked her one. Then it was done. He was boss of the house, he was in his new home, he had a minion and a plaything and his papa was still around too.
I kept Molly in my room with the door closed at night so a) George and Dad could have their together time and b) so George could have the run of the house to explore his new home without interference from his pesky new sister, who was forever following him around and bringing him yucky dog toys covered in slobber. (This gesture on my part would later prove quite costly, but that’s another story.) George would just lift his paw, give her a soft smack and she’d go lie down somewhere. Poor Molly.
It shows how much dad loves animals when he decided to make it a five-week transition with him still in the picture. He started to go out for short periods (and to be honest Molly was more fretful about that than George.) Then he’d spend two or three long days with my sister, leaving in the morning and coming back in the late afternoon. Again, he always came back, so things were okay in the animals’ world. These were his departing words every time he left the house. “I’ll be back.”
Finally, moving day came. Things had been taken a few at a time to my sister’s so it was just a case of his duffle bag and a few personal possessions left here. He fit those all into his car and he headed down the road to the new life chapter in his life, but without his bosom buddy George.
The next day, dad phoned and asked me to put Molly and George on the phone, George first. He talked to them, said “I’ll be back” and he did that increasingly less. Every second day, every third day, then once a week. He didn’t want them to be upset he was gone.
Dad’s first return visit was a cause for joy for Molly, a situation of aloofness for George until he forgave dad for leaving. But he was all over dad the minute he sat down in his leather recliner, which he’d left here for his visits. Dad always stays about a week-10 days and always ends his visit to me, George and Molly with “I love you. I’ll be back.”
I believe the long transition dad set up (which benefitted him more than George but awwww) and the fact that George met me the same time as he met dad, and saw me every time I went to visit dad when he still had the flat, contributed to his successful transition. He already knew me, he now has his minion, and he knows dad comes back. But he’s my cat now. Don’t let my dad tell you anything different. He’s delusional. MOL (just kidding). And yes, when he phones, he still asks me to put George on the phone first, then Molly.
NEXT BLOG POST will be on heterchromia iridium, the genetic condition that gives humans and animals different coloured eyes. After that, I’ll do one on George’s reason for lifelong #unfug membership. He breaks things. Regularly, noisily, and with great joy.
Find me on Twitter @AlexandraLSmit2
(copyright all pics in this blogpost by @AlexandraLSmit2, used with her permission here)
(update.. added some pics from Neo friends, scroll to end)
NO, i did really not want to insert our loved Neo hamster buddy into a blogpost title!
This should have been the first regular blogpost called #HugiMeows .
It should appear weekly or bi-weekly, with some short stories about Lady Minky and me, news from Hugodads weekly animal shelter visits and maybe some events from our animal community. Dat was the plan ..
But yesterday in the evening (german time) i read the sad news,
that my hamster friend Neo went OTRB :-((( .
all our Moin group friends also cried ..
(Wise Mr. Kuma, i would like to add a picture of you too, can you select one for our Neo darling?)
The Cinnamons also sent us a photo for Neo
HugiDad and me are very sad! He always made us smile with his lovely face and his cute nose.
May the little cutie rest in peace .. #RIPNeo friend !
Datz it for today
your sad Hugi 😦
i searched some pics of how we want to remember our weetie friend Neo:
no copyright text today, but plz respect our friend Neo and his friends !
It was a real bad Hugiday 😦
After my early morning garden patrol I switched on my iCatPhone and then i saw it ..
a Bye-bye from TribeOfMa tweet made my eyes leaky
my loved Ma will be going offline and I don’t know how long!
(pic from @tribeOfMa)
For me it is a real sad situation. I fell in love wif Ma!
Ma’s Dad @TribeOfMa beame a real good Hugidad friend during the last year.
He is in real reallife trouble now, and we can only hope the best for him and his tribe of beautiful cats!This goodbye tweet triggered a large reaction .. out catworld is loosing a good friend, animal lover and puurfect cat photographer .. at least for a while. All my friends hope TribeOfMa comes back soon!
The situation of a twitta account going offline or inactive is nothing new. Other friends took a twitta break (i understand that), Cookie or EvilStevie were inactive for several months and we were worried if they would come back. Even more worrying is the situation,when a twiita account simply disappears and noone knows what has happened .. one of our palz (Mimipuss) “disappeared” without any notice .
For me this is a very diifficult situation to handle, but i found some ways to handle it. How to prepare for such events will be topic of another blogpost (my codename is #bestTwittaPractice).
Hint: “that is my tip for our friends, if u find a good twitta friend, get his email adress, just in case ..”
Another sad day today was Bonnies blog:
Humum has a lot of real trouble and deserves a loz of #zombiesquad and #pawcircle hugs and purrz!
Bye for today
Hugs to TribeOfMa( come back soon plz!) and
Bonnie (care for Mum)
Here we go, our second guest post: Cutie Isabel by by our twitta friend @myfourcats1 !
————————————————————————————— All four of our cats were rescued by the RSPCA in UK. They all have different stories and traumas. Isabel was almost 3 months old by the time we adopted her (in Autumn 2008) so there’s not much we know about her early weeks of life. Sadly, we learned nothing about her from the RSPCA volunteer who was keeping kittens in her makeshift cattery (really a glorified shed) in her back garden. Isabel had no name, as I recall, when we went to see her for the first time. She was in a small cubicle with a chicken wire door with two other siblings. The other kittens had already been put on hold by someone else. Isabel was the only one with no home. She had stunted legs and tail compared to her sisters and she was the runt of the litter (although you wouldn’t know that NOW to look at her😹). Other than that we were told she was perfectly healthy. She didn’t meow but she did like to climb! The most vivid memory I have of her from that first meeting is how she climbed all over the chicken wire door and hung upside down and gazed at us! That was it, we wanted her! We went back a week later and took her home. She never meowed. We had a new carrier with soft white wool blanket for her. She was allowed to take her favourite toy, a little brown mouse, with her from the fosterer. That little stuffed toy never left her side for the first six months of her life with us. When we got her home, she still didn’t meow. She didn’t come out of the carrier. So we put the carrier on the floor of our bedroom and let her be. We thought, let her decide for herself when she wants to explore her new surroundings…she’ll be ok. But almost two weeks went by and except for eating and using her litter box (which she learned to do in one day! Smart girl!) she stayed in her carrier box cuddling her toy and blanket. At this point, we still didn’t have a name. It wasn’t until the third week that she spent a day outside her box. It would be weeks before she stopped sleeping/napping/hiding in it! What happened to her before she was rescued to make her so afraid? We imagined the worst. When she did begin to explore the house, she kept falling over and tripping. Immediately we nicknamed her Boo-Boo. We also called the vet. We had her checked and nothing problematic was discovered so we put her clumsiness down to her slightly stunted legs and tail. I kept looking at her and she seemed to look liked a Belle but she liked the sound of “boo.” Hubby thought her clumsiness was like dizziness so he started calling her Dizzy-Boo (I slapped him for that!😹). One of my favourite writers is Isabel Allende and at that time I was re-reading “The House of the Spirits” so I thought: Isabel! Izzy-Boo! So that was that! It seemed like she knew she finally had a proper name because that day she perked up and spent an entire 24 hours outside her carrier box! She still carried her mouse everywhere with her but that night she slept on our bed and let us cuddle her for the first time! Soon, Isabel was climbing on the stair banisters, running in the garden, chasing her toys, playing, jumping, and started to meow like crazy! Her favourite activity soon became watching the blackbirds that would eat the berries off our firethorn plants in the front garden! One thing was certain: Isabel loved her food! She never had a weight problem though…until I had to rush home to USA when my dad first fell ill in Spring 2009. She did not respond well to my sudden disappearance. When I returned to the UK three weeks later, Isabel was very cross with me and let me know it! She also must have been more stressed than we realised because she soon developed a serious UTI. The vet put her on a special dietary food that, in a few weeks, cleared up the infection but had the unfortunate side effect of causing weight retention. Isabel has never lost the extra weight, despite my measuring her food intake ever since. But you know what? She’s happy now and that’s all that matters. Isabel is the loudest, most talkative cat I have ever met! She talks to me all day! If I look at her and ask her a question, she answers! Do you want food? MEOW MEOW MEEEOOOOOWWW!! Isabel is her own cat, although she gets along with the other three just fine, she likes her space. I mean, hey, she was the first cat so she’s got certain rights! And, she’s tough, even Tristan doesn’t push his luck with her! I still wonder, though, what happened to Isabel before she was rescued. It’s little things: such as she hates men. Any strange man that comes into the house, she hisses & spits like crazy, but not at women. Even hubby gets hissed at occasionally and we just can’t figure it out except that maybe she was abused by a man before she was rescued? She doesn’t like her head touched…ever. I try not to think about why or what happened to her in the first weeks of her life on the street. She’s still clumsy but she’s very clever. She knows exactly how to get what she wants from mom…but don’t they all?😻 ————————————————————————– (copyright all pics in this blogpost by @myfourcats1 , all used with her permission here) my evil plans: x rules of thumbs of cat photography for humans dummies (i get a lot of questions about this topic) and Hugi ideas for #BestTwittaPractice .. work in progress . Your Hugi
Here it is! we have our first guest post:
The Blue and Green-Eyed Tuxedo Cat Who Kept Beating the Odds
by our twitta friend Alex !
This post is about George, the amazing tuxedo cat who has beaten so many odds against him.
George, who is about 3.5 years old now, was part of a 90-cat rescue in late winter of 2013. Two local Humane Societies joined forces when they heard of the problem in a town nearby. Mine was one of them. The Humane Society in whose jurisdiction the rescue occurred took 60 cats, and mine took 30. How fortunate for us that George came here!
George was a very sick cat when he was rescued. He was immediately hospitalized by one of the clinics affiliated with the local Humane Society. He was full of infections, worms, and dehydrated. He spent a month on IV drip as he recuperated.
While I don’t have the exact number, many of the cats rescued at the same time did not survive. George has a fighting spirit though and he made it. It might be because of his relative youth, no one is sure.
The rescue took place on a rural property, where no one would have noticed the number of cats or their condition. I’m not sure who called in the authorities; possibly the postman or a family member. According to George’s rescuers, he was one of about 10 “favourites” kept in the house by the elderly owners. He had been declawed on his front paws (grrrr) and I like to think it’s because he must have shredded up their draperies and furniture first.
I spoke at length with @Smiglilley, a Twitter friend, about this, who presented some great suppositions for what happened to make things so bad. As we bandied about ideas, I came to a few conclusions I could “live with.”
1. The couple was elderly and needed to go into care (that did happen).
2. Because of that, they were probably slowly overwhelmed by an increasing number of cats who kept breeding. (George was not neutered. Front claws out, but not neutered. Grrrr.)
3. George and the other cats who were “favourites” in the house were still neglected medically, as were all the ones outside in the barn and on the property. Hence, the infections and worms; even the dehydration. I hope with everything in me that his front paws’ declawing was not DIY.
4. As the numbers of cats increased, the well-being of the elderly couple on that rural property was declining simultaneously. It was a disaster waiting to happen. And it did.
In the overall muddle of too many cats, declining mental and physical health of the elderly couple, the deaths of unknown cats, George emerged at one of my local shelters.
My dad was looking for an adult Calico Cat. He had his heart set on a calico. He’d rescued a calico kitten up north the year before and he missed that connection. One day, he called my sister and I and said “I’m ready.” Our mum had died not long before and they always had cats. He kept thinking of that calico kitten.
So my dad, my sister and I went on a calico hunt at the local Humane Society and local shelters. At the Humane Society he held and cuddled every calico there. Something said “no” to him, he said later, so we went off to the first shelter. Another calico, another cuddle. No, said dad. We were starting to think maybe he felt he was wrong to get a cat after all.
As we headed back here, I remembered a small shelter tucked away in a plaza. I said, “Let’s try there, and if dad doesn’t find one, we’ll call it a day.” So off we went to the third shelter. None of us even noticed George at first. Our eyes scanned the cages for calicos.
We went into small lounge, where the shelter staff brought us the two calicos they had at the time. One was friendly and loving; the other was frightened. Dad held them both, cooed to them, asked the staff to leave us for a bit. Dad told my sister and I “these are beautiful. I don’t know why I am hesitating.” We told him he probably was not ready yet, and we’d try again in a month.
The staff came back in. One of the staff said, do you like Tuxies? We have a beautiful tuxie who just became ready for adoption. He was sick for a long time and she told us the general details of his stories. Dad said no, but I said yes, please! My last cat (18 years old at OTRB time) was a tuxie. For me, there’s something about Tuxies. In came George, looking serene and all-knowing.
They set him down, he came up to each of the three of us and head-bumped us on the leg. Then he turned around, jumped up on dad, jumped up on the back of the chair he sat in, and proceeded to wrap his body around my dad’s neck. Dad said, “this is my cat.” As with most cats, they choose us, not the other way around. Dad must have instinctually known that and so he “waited” until George picked him. (I was already smitten.)
It was love at first sight. He wouldn’t be ready for another week, they said. They wanted to retest his blood & stool one last time. Dad went out and bought a litter box, kibble, treats & toys. I dusted off my pet carrier. A week later, George was his.
NEXT BLOG POSTS: I will do future posts on George’s #unfug personality, and how he came to be with me instead of my dad (who remains heartbroken he couldn’t keep George. Let’s leave it at allergies for now).
On Twitter, I am @AlexandraLSmit2
(copyright all pics in this blogpost by @AlexandraLSmit2, used with her permission here)
me iz planning my next #Unfug