I have always loved animals, ever since I can remember. Growing up we had a dog, then two dogs for a few years but my mother didn’t like cats and we lived in the suburbs so that was really it. When I was at University I had a series of pet rats, which make excellent pets by the way, but they don’t live very long. Anyways, it had been years since we had a pet in the house before we finally got ourselves a dog last summer.
It got a little challenging because shortly after we got her my Husband went from working entirely from home to working considerable hours outside the home. Exercising her properly meant a good 1 to 1.5 hour hike or a slightly shorter run and to do that I had to leave the house without the kids. Without Husband around to watch them and the days of winter so short I was having a hard time some days keeping her properly exercised (and when she hasn’t been, she is rather frenetic and crazy around the house). Here in our new place she is SO happy and free. It’s a great life for a dog.
Well, my daughter is also an animal lover and had been asking about getting a cat. I told her when we got our own place we would get a couple of barn cats. We don’t have a barn yet and our new house is quite small, but when I discovered we have mice I decided there was no time like the present. This past Tuesday I told Daughter that we were heading to the local SPCA to see about adopting a cat (just one for now). She was hoping for a black and white cat and I wanted something other then a longhair cat.
I have to say that I’ve had nothing but great experiences adopting from the SPCA. Some people worry that, with adopted animals, you don’t know what you are getting. But in my experience the folks at the SPCA take time to get to know the animals and are careful about placing them in the right home. We walked in and said we wanted to adopt a cat. She asked me if it would be indoor or outdoor and I said “both”. Then she looked at the kids and said she had a cat she thought would suit us well. We went into the cat viewing area and this little fella came right up to us, not a flinch or bit of hesitation. He was extremely affectionate, confident, and totally nonplussed by the children. She said he was a stray that came in two months ago and that he was about a year old. It took us all of five minutes to decide he was the one for us.
In the car on the way home I got outvoted and so our new kitty got stuck with the name Buttercup. I’m sure he won’t mind. In return for not pulling a veto I made Daughter take responsibility for keeping his food and water refreshed. What is it they say about pets teaching kids responsibility? 😉
He’s been spending most of his time in our bedroom so far. He and the dog have not quite accepted each other as permanent housemates but I know they will eventually. It will be about another week before we let him outside (just want to make sure he knows this is home) and then I can put in a cat door and ditch the litter box (I’d forgotten how much I hate litter boxes!). Meantime I’m loving having a warm, furry, purring body sleeping on my legs again after all these years. He really is an extremely affectionate and tolerant cat. Just look what he let the kids do with him this evening!
Son is snuggling with him under the covers while Daughter shows him YouTube videos on the iPod. We really lucked out with this cat. Best of all, the place is feeling more like my kind of home what with a dog and a cat now. And how great it felt to be able to finally say to the SPCA that we owned our place and did not need a note from our landlord!!