You can probably read between the lines that I am in denial. YES, I AM IN DENIAL. I have not totally convinced myself that I am ready to be a cat owner even though the cat has been with us for about a week since we found him wandering on our deck. I am still patiently waiting for the cat owner to show up. It is hard for me to believe that the owner would just dump the cat on the street. If the owner no longer loves the cat or is able to afford to keep the cat, wouldn’t it make more sense to give it to the shelter? At least by doing so, there will some traceable records about the cat. The new owner will be able to know if the cat has been spayed/ neutered or vaccinated or if there are any medical conditions and treatments.
You are better informed when you adopt from a no-kill shelter. You know that the cat is medically checked and vaccinated, evaluated for temperament, and spayed or neutered. You will have some history of the cat. You will know if the cat has any medical problems before the adoption. The adoption counselor will also cover all the ins and outs of cat care and what it takes to be a cat owner.
When becoming a cat owner unexpectedly by accepting a stray off the street, you have no idea what you are getting into. For this cat, we have no idea if he has been vaccinated. I really hate to have to give him unnecessary vaccination. If he was already vaccinated, would it create more side effects getting two or three more shots in a short period of time especially when rabies shot is given once every two year? We know that this cat is not neutered as his two testicles are pretty visible. That is also how we can tell that it is a male cat. I also hate to neuter him now against the owner’s will if the owner were to show up in a few days. By the way, I think that he is roughly between one and three years old. How did I make that assumption when I have no prior encounter with the cats? By comparing with the cats posted for adoption on Petfinder in addition to what animal control told us when we asked how we could tell the sex of the cat and if it was neutered or spayed. The visible size of his testicles is the clue.
Yes, I am still patiently waiting for his owner to show up. I believe he used to have a loving owner, judging from what we saw. I hate to think that the owner is not frantically looking for him especially he is such as mellow, even temper, friendly and affectionate cat. He does not scratch anything. He knows to use liter box. He is always so gentle and well behaved. The only thing that we have to watch out is that he likes to jump up onto the counter to examine the fish tank or onto the kitchen sink to drink from the dirty dishes sometimes filled with detergent or to sneak into the bathroom looking inside the toilet bowl, no idea what his intention is, maybe just out of curiosity. I hope that he wasn’t contemplating of drinking from the toilet bowl like some dogs do.
So far, “lost cat” flyers were posted in our neighborhood in addition to online posts. We have checked the “lost cat” bulletin and have also called the local animal control to report the cat found and to see if a lost report has been filed. We will also post some more flyers in the neighborhood on the other side of the school later. We have learnt that our neighbor did not post the flyers to that neighborhood, which my husband suspected to be the most likely place where the cat came from, a suspicion shared by the woman who also saw the cat the Saturday morning when he was first spotted.
You might wonder why I don’t just accept the fact that it is now our cat. I have not been a cat owner so you probably know better than me as a cat owner. I believe that if you used to own that cat, you would not want to leave his fate to the street. As a loving cat owner, if you can no longer afford the cat, I would think that you would give him to the shelter first or find another home for him. That is why I am still waiting for the owner. I still believe that he or she is frantically looking for his or her beloved cat. We will give his owner some more chances and wait for a few more weeks before we get him to the vet. Right now, we have placed a collar (a very light plastic homemade one) with our phone on it. He doesn’t mind that at all. This way if he accidentally gets out and couldn’t find his way home, someone else will be able to inform us.
Written by Elisa English
On May 11th, 2011