Wednesday, April 18, 2018

The Accidental Pet Adoption

Although this is, for the most part, a dog blog I had cats as well for most of my life.  When I was young and lived with my parents we had outdoor cats.  There seemed to always be stray cats that found their way into our yard.  Awareness of the importance of spaying and neutering wasn't as strong as it is today.  My parents thought is was fine to just let stray cats be, so we fed them and enjoyed them outside, rarely inviting them inside the house.

I always wanted an indoor cat of my own.  One that would sit in my lap as I watched TV and sleep in my bed with me.  When I was finally out in the world and able to move out of their house, one of the first things I wanted to do was get a cat.  However, I had moved into Manhattan and having your own apartment was prohibitively expensive.  Most young people starting out in New York City share apartments with one or more roommates.  I was thrilled to be living in the city and after an exhaustive search I finally found a roommate situation.  I couldn't wait to get my cat, but it was not to be.  My roommate didn't like cats and wouldn't let me get one.  The next roommate I had didn't want a cat either.

A couple of years later I moved back to Long Island, where I could afford my own apartment.  With this move I knew I could finally get the cat I so desperately wanted!  There was no one and nothing to stop me.

Sometimes the Accidental Pet Adoption can be the best kind of adoption! Pet adoption, Cat adoption
My beautiful Calico kitty, Maggie, the cat I had longed for
I asked around and searched for a kitten.  It was Winter and there weren't as many kittens around at that time of year.  A friend of my sister's is involved in rescue and found out I was looking for a kitten and that I longed for a Calico kitten.  She knew of a Calico kitten that would be ready to be adopted in a couple of weeks.  Sight unseen I said I would take her!

I was so excited!!  I was finally getting a kitten of my very own, an indoor kitty who would sit in my lap while I watched TV and sleep in my bed with me.  I began preparing for my new Calico kitten.  There happen to be a Petco within walking distance from my apartment, so the very next evening I walked over there after work.  I picked out some cute bowls, a carrier, a bed, and a litter box for her.

As I was getting ready to leave the store I saw a woman walk into the Petco carrying a cardboard box with some holes in it.  I knew there had to be an animal in there and I was curious so I followed her to the back of the store.  She took the box to an area with a few cages.  Apparently, they had a small cat adoption center in the store.

I couldn't help but lean in close to see as the woman opened the box and lifted out an adult Tabby cat.  I remarked that the cat such really pretty markings.  "Are you looking for a cat to adopt?" she asked.  I told her I was there buying supplies to get ready for my new kitten who would be ready to come home in 2 weeks.  She asked if I might be interested in adopting a second cat.  "Oh no!" I said. One kitty was enough.  Then the woman asked if I wanted to hold the Tabby cat.  By now I know that once you hold them, they steal your heart!  He was so sweet, he nuzzled into my armpit as I held him!  But I gave him back, saying I just couldn't have two cats.

One cat would be enough... or would it?
I left the store and went home with my pet supply purchases.  As I lie in bed that night I couldn't stop thinking about that adorable, sweet Tabby cat.  On my way to to work the next day I thought about him while I was on the train.  Then I thought about him all through my first meeting.  By lunchtime I had told my co-workers and my boss all about him and how sweet he was.  I couldn't take it anymore, I just had to have that cat!

I ducked into a conference room and frantically dialed the rescue woman's number.  She was smart enough to give me her card.  As the phone rang I prayed he hadn't been adopted in the 18 hours since I last held him.   When I got her on the phone, the woman said the cat was still available for adoption!  I told her I'd meet her back at Petco that very night.

Maggie and Mousey, my dynamic kitty duo!
I couldn't wait to get home after work and go pick up my new furry friend.  Thanks to the previous night's shopping spree, I already had the supplies I needed to bring home my new cat.  It was so exciting to see him again and bring him home.  Not only did I finally have a cat, but in two weeks I would have TWO cats.  I was overjoyed!  I just hoped they would get along.

My new cat was quite shy and quiet and very sweet.  Because of his shy demeanor I named him Mousey.   We bonded instantly and my time alone with him was wonderful.  I was still excited to get my new Calico kitten though, and I couldn't wait for her to join our little family as well.

Adopting Mousey was what I like to call "the accidental adoption", which can turn out to be the very best kind of adoption!

Yeah, two cats are definitely better than one!  Mousey was my happy "accident", for which I am eternally grateful!
My Calico kitten was expected to come home with me in 2 weeks but because I had adopted another cat, we had to wait an additional 2 weeks for her to be old enough to get a Feline Lukemia test.  The test was negative - Whew!  I had already known I wanted to name my new Calico kitten Maggie, so when she turned 9 weeks old I traveled into Harlem to pick Maggie up and bring her home.

When she first arrived tiny Maggie was all piss and vinegar!  She hissed and raised her back at Mousey, who was completely non-plussed by her tough demeanor.  I think he was actually amused!  He laid down and stretched out on the floor to show her he was no threat.  It took a few days, but Maggie finally settled down and the two of them became fast friends.  In fact, they cuddled together all day long and were virtually inseparable.

I loved Mousey and Maggie so much, they were a big part of my life in those years.  Sadly, Mousey only lived another 3 years or so.  He had a heart murmur which caused him to leave us way too soon.  Losing Mousey was devastating for both me and for Maggie. 

Maggie cat and I were together for nearly 19 years before she passed away.  She was with me through so many life changes, some wonderful and some tragic.  But through it all, we were together, and that's what really matters.  Maggie and Mousey will always be in my heart.


Icy loved Maggie to pieces.  This photo was taken the first time Icy finally learned the Leave It command.  It was the start of peace in our home, as Icy stopped chasing Maggie around to lick and play with her.  Because Maggie would have none of that!  It's my favorite photo of the two of them, and pretty much the only photo of the two of them!


27 comments:

  1. What a beautiful story! Thanks so much for sharing it...it brought to my mind so many happy memories of cats I had when I was young (it would go on too long if I tried to share them here.....). ♥
    Jan, Wag 'n Woof Pets

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  2. Such an amazing story to read! Adding a furry member to your family is an exciting new life event that can bring you and your loved ones great joy. Thanks for the share.
    World of Animals

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  3. Well, great...now I'm crying all over my laptop. LOL! Your story hit home. You know, I adopted my Miss Gitty and she was with me 20 years. We were together from the summer I graduated high school until my own children were in school. She was a tabby and there will never be another cat like her for me. ♥

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  4. If somebody wants expert take on the main topic of blogging next I advise him/her to go to this site, continue the fussy job.

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  5. I loved this story! I didn't even know you had cats in your life! How amazing that you gave Mousy a forever home even if he was only with you a short time. I have had many accidental adoptions - and you are right sometimes they are the best kind - meant to be! Lovely that Maggie was with you for so many years. I had two kittens I adopted right out of college that lived until 2009 and 2012.

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  6. Absolutely wonderful story. I loved the title as well. My beloved Angel Miss P, who lived 18 wonderful years with the rest of our feline family is still in my heart. Our love and hearts always expand to allow new fur kids in our lives.
    Anita, The Purrsonal Assistant to The Trivbe of Five

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  7. What a beautiful story Cathy, thanks for sharing. I knew once you got a look at the cat in Petco you'd be back!! Mousey and Maggie were both so lucky to have shared their lives with you. Even though you didn't have Mousey long, they were amazing years for all of you.

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  8. What a beautiful story and I often say someone will come into your life when you are not expecting it and that was Mousey. I had 3 cats in Israel and to this day when I look back at it, we went through so much together, tragedy, wars but I would do it all over again - Cats do rule although shh don't tell Layla

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  9. Visiting rescue pets can be a dangerous proposition! They're both adorable. It's great that they got along and became best friends.

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  10. This sounds so familiar LOL I have had three accidental adoptions at home and ended up with 5 cats because one or two are not enough. My dog loves them all.

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  11. Aww I love learning you have a cat side to you! Maggie and Mousey were so adorable. So glad they got along and became good friends/siblings. Sorry for your loss of both however I'm glad you were blessed with 19 years with Maggie. I love that this happy accident turned out to be fate.

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  12. I know that a lot of people warn against impulse adoption, but I think that when an animal speaks to your heart, you need to listen. I'm glad it worked out for you three! I'm sorry that Mousey didn't live a long time.

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  13. Thank you so much for sharing this story! What beautiful cats! Mousey looks so much like my cat Milo, who I lost a couple years ago. I'm so sorry you lost both of them, especially Mousey so young, but I'm glad you had Maggie for 19 years!

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  14. Aww, what a sweet story. In my opinion, 2 cats are definitely better than one. They get a built in playmate, which is especially awesome if you aren't home all day so they have companionship. Accidental adoptions are the best. 3 of my 4 dogs were accidental LOL

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  15. We once had a cat who adopted herself. She started coming around, we started giving her some food because she looked quite emaciated, eventually she just moved in.

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  16. Calico cats can be a bit temperamental so it's great that Mousey set the standard for Maggie. What a joy for you to have two kitties to cuddle with.

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  17. What a beautiful story! I love hearing about how people got their animals! And two is always better than one, even with dogs (wink wink)! ;)

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  18. Such a beautiful story! I almost had an accidental adoption before the girls came to live with me, but I had already committed to bringing two new kittens into my home and just knew I couldn't bring in more. I've often wondered what happened to those kittens.

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  19. I have several accidental adoptions! But my two most memorable was when I went to the rescue to pick up Fireball and there was a volunteer playing with a cage full of little tuxie Maine Coon kittens. One was SO cute - all curly white whiskers in this little black face and the perfect tuxie markings. I told the girl how cute he was and she said here, you want to hold him? while handing him over. The rescue manager that was doing Fireball's adoption just pulled open her desk drawer, pulled out another contract and laughed yup, he's going home too. So I went home with Thunderbolt and Fireball...

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  20. I really love this post! I've had cats all of my life, and a few of those were accidental adoptions as well. Except that, I've always learned later they weren't really accidental at all, but part of the plan. Our chosen pets find us no matter the circumstances. <3 Julia Williams

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  21. I really love this post! I've had cats all of my life, and a few of those were accidental adoptions as well. Except that, you always learn later they weren't really accidental at all, but part of the plan. Our chosen pets find us no matter the circumstances.

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  22. I KNEW there was a reason I loved your blog more than ever. This is it!!!! What a wonderful story and yep I can relate to the kitten ;-) Heh heh. How can anyone not love a cat eh? Or a dog.

    It was lovely to meet you and Phoebe at BlogPaws. You looked wonderful and Phoebe was such a star, so much confidence!!!

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  23. What a beautiful meeting, you and Mousey were meant to be together! Sounds like you were blessed with two beautiful felines, who left pawprints on your heart

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  24. I love reading this story, Cathy. Thanks so much for sharing it. You can never just have one pet!

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  25. Aw what a cute story! I love this. It was obviously meant to be :) growing up, we always had cats. They were all rescues or outdoor cats that seemed to adopt US and steal our hearts.

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  26. Oh, I love this story. Mousey sounds like my Irish, who I accidentally adopted. My Miss Bianca was with me for 19 years too, like Maggie. I avoid looking at the cat section in our shelter's boutique store because I know I'll want them all. And they are little heart stealers in the best way!

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  27. Oh, Cathy, this is such a heartwarming story! I am so impressed that Icy became such good friends with your kitty, Maggie! Four of mine I am not sure of. My boy, Gibson, he was an angel even here on Earth as he loved to just sit out on the front lawn with me and chill with our now furangel adopted stray Smokie. The other four seem just a tad bit excited and ambitious when they see our now kitty, an adopted feral. Fortunately, they do not share the same space - Binx owns the front, and the Sibes own the back! LOL! Your kitties were beautiful, and so very lucky to have been part of your family. <3

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