Tuesday, February 5, 2008

From Rags to Riches

Some people shouldn’t own pets. Not at all. They simply don’t know what’s necessary for them at the most basic level – food and water.

Last Christmas, my neighbor caught me at the letterbox and asked me if I had seen his new cat. I hadn’t. I never liked the neighbor much – they were renting the house in front of me, and had to share a driveway. They and their whole family or any visitors had total disregard to the fact that the driveway should be kept clear for my car and any visitors wanting to visit me, and would block it frequently. Sometimes it took threats to the police for them to finally clear it, other times letters from the owner/rental lease company threatening they would be removed from the property, but mostly they would simply cause trouble at every opportunity.

They’ve long gone now thank goodness – but they should never be allowed to own animals.

A few days after that conversation at the letterbox, I noticed they had gone away. Greatly relieved at a few days peace and quiet, free from loud music and no cars blocking the driveway, I spent the time in the garden redoing my watering system. I was having great difficulties getting it to work properly. On the second day in the morning, while still working on watering system, now redoing it in sections to isolate the problem, I was joined by a little tiny white kitten. Ever so friendly, she played with my hands, and was so desperate for human company she didn't mind getting totally soaked each time I tested each section by turning on the system and getting drenched. All day this little white shadow followed me. If I disappeared inside the house – in it would follow, and trot back outside to help again with whatever needed doing.

At 4pm I called it a day – and went upstairs to have a shower to get rid of all the grime and dirt from the garden. I came back downstairs to find this little white shadow fast asleep on my couch – totally worn out. I popped her on my lap and it purred and purred and slept.

My two Burmese cats were not impressed.

At 10pm I noticed the neighbours were still not home, and this kitten was far too young to be outside at night. I popped next door to see if they had left any food or water for it outside…. Nothing. Not a drop. I fed the kitten – and it wolfed down the food as if it hadn’t seen anything for months.

My two Burmese cats were definitely not impressed.

Midnight rolled round, nothing for it – the kitten was obviously staying over. I found an old box, lined it with plastic, and I had kitty litter that I use for my bbq in the cupboard, so popped that in my ensuite, popped the kitten on an old blanket on my bed and went to sleep. The kitten didn’t move once, all night.

My two Burmese cats yowled and growled outside my bedroom door all night – not at all impressed to have been locked out.

My daughter got in the next morning and was surprised to see this white kitten, which greeted her when she came in my room, then followed her round the house like a devoted puppy dog as she got ready for work.

“Can we keep her”
I was very tempted.

By this time my two Burmese cats were ropeable. They would throw murderous looks my way at every opportunity, and I didn’t trust what they would do to a poor defenceless kitten, so I rang a friend and asked if she would mind the kitten for a day while I tried to find a new home for it. I couldn’t very well keep it when the neighbours would come back from holiday and reclaim it. Secretly I hoped my friend would take it in so totally irresistible this kitten was.

I rang the one friend who had no pets, who lived on a lifestyle block with two young boys, Sam and Logan. The perfect family for this lovely kitten. They didn’t want pets – but I decided to try them anyway. I spoke to Geoff, as Nikki at work. He worked some magic obviously on Nikki and she turned up with the boys to look at the kitten that afternoon. Big mistake to take the boys to see the kitten, and I knew then the kitten had a great home.

Became best friends with a pet lamb called Zorro!

Kitten was called Snowy, and taken to vet. Flea collar was taken off as she was far too young to be wearing one. She was flea ridden, and had worms and heart worms so bad it was making her cough. Very underweight and malnourished.

Neighbours came home four days later. About three days after they came home he came to my door.

‘Have you seen our cat?’ he asked
‘That little white thing?’ I asked
‘Not for a few days’ I said – which was true – I hadn’t seen it for a few days!
‘We’ve been away’ he said
‘Probably went looking for food and water’ I said
‘Probably – it doesn’t really matter – it was a freebie anyway’ he said and walked away.

Why people think a kitten so young can fend for itself in food and water is beyond me.

So that was the rags part. Poor kitty such a bad start in life, but now is living it up on a lifestyle block. Nikki, Geoff and the boys renamed Scuppers as it became the cat that goes away on the yacht each weekend. Has learnt to like seafood – especially scallops (how hard is that?) To catch birds, stalk chickens, no mice in the house any more. Tears around the house and the gardens and paddocks and speeds not able to be clocked. So visible, so white – can’t hide anywhere! Except under the Christmas Tree !

Major pest - knocks tomatoes off the bench for fun, and lies on top of whatever you are trying to do.

Became best friends with a black lamb called Zorro.

White cats are known to be deaf, but Scuppers luckily missed the genes for this. She has a tiny black mark on her forehead, and has yellow eyes. Most cases of deafness in white cats are in blue eyed cats. The white color of the coat in cats as well as the blue color of the eyes is a genetic characteristic which in some cases causes deafness due to lack of a cell membrane in the inner part of the ear which it is believed is related to the genes responsible for the color characteristics. to deafness.

My watering system still doesn’t work properly.


kw said...

Robyn-- been wondering about your test results. I remember when you told about finding this cat and how angry you were. Glad to hear the happy ending and to see the pictures! :-)

Bron said...

That's a lovely story. I'm pleased it got a nice home. What horrible neighbors though!

Fiaenn said...

A gene that causes deafness is correlated with gene of blue eyes in cats, not especially with the white color of fur. But of course, more white cats have blue eves then dark cats :)
But the story reminds me the story of Wampiria, the cat that lives in my parent's home. She came to us (Then I lived with them) as a small and poor kitten, in winter. Hungry and very unhappy, she wanted to get a shelter in a house, no matter of big dog or other cats that lived there. She had a lack of fur on her neck, probably form a collar. It was obvious that someone had to throw her away. Not she is a big, fat and lazy cat that sleeps all days on an armchair. And looks quite happy. But when she returns home from a walk, she runs very quickly, like afraid of not being let in....

Squ65 said...

Food and water? Um One more is ..... pampering with a lot of love! Some people shouldn't have own the pet(s) at the first place. Sad. Is the same cat that you found her in living room?

Elyse said...

You are a kitty savior!! I love you!!! Thank you for thinking of the kitties.