07/09/2015

what you need to know about adopting a cat

I’ve grown up with cats – the last five months that we’ve lived in our new place is the first time in my life where I haven’t had one. First came Muffin and Tiger – two tabby beauties that my parents got as kittens around the time I was born. After them, we picked up Amber and Phoebe – two black rescue cats who were around 5 years old. When Amber was sadly put down, I did the ultimate naughty teenager thing (although 25 at the time) and went and chose Melchett from the local Cats Protection. To keep Phoebe company of course – not because he was gorgeous and fluffy and super cuddly. Melchett was (is!) my cat and although very loved by everyone at home, he did belong to me. He was the perfect cat from day one – at just 8 months old when we got him, he went outside to do his business, snuggled up and rolled around with his belly showing to attract all the fuss and attention he could.

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Sadly, when we moved into our place, we didn’t think it would be fair to take him from my parents home. A huge garden that backs onto woodland – he was actually rescued from being a feral cat so his instincts were to be outside as much as he could. After a few cries and lots of cuddles, we left him at home. We’re only 4 miles away mind, so I visit him regularly and he’s still as affectionate as ever.

Now our summer of travels is over, I was super keen to bring some sort of fluffy fun into the house. It was something we’d be discussing but perhaps not totally settled on – the issue of a cat flap and a new sofa lurked! But in my last week of the holidays, I couldn’t help but stick my head around the local animal shelters door. There, I found more cats (and kittens!) that needed homes than I could’ve asked for! After agreeing an older cat was more suited to us and our busy lives, I made a short list of five kitties. Four out of them were 12 years old however, meaning to insure them fully would cost almost three times as much as a younger cat each month. One of the five, was little BeeBee who had come from an elderly man who had eight cats. She was just four, although we think now maybe she is only three, and was definitely my kind of cat. White and grey – they think maybe a Persian Blue cross, she was friendly and oh so pretty. Very lady like, with a beautiful coat. She was the obvious choice!

After that, its snowballed a bit – I took Sam to meet her and once he’d given the okay, I reserved her and a shelter officer came to check out the house. Although this slows down the process of adopting an animal, I can see why they do it. They need to make sure you live where you say you do, and in the right sort of accommodation for the pet. We passed, and the next day I was allowed to pick her up. I’ll admit, I suddenly felt a bit daunted when I went to collect her alone. My parents house was always so cat friendly, with tiled and wooden floors and a big kitchen space. We have a new build with cream carpets throughout, a tiny kitchen and a brand new velvet sofa. It also, was all down to me now. To make sure she didn’t escape in her first few weeks, and to make sure her litter tray was changed. And to decide fairly swiftly what we were going to do about our lack of cat flap!

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But as I carried her to the car and she rode home next to me, I couldn’t help but grin like a loon. She’s so perfectly pretty and I was so excited to get her home to see how she’d be. The first night, she was fairly confident. Although she found a couple of cubby holes to hide in (her favourite being behind the toilet), she came out to play and eat when called. On the Friday, I had to go to work so I asked my mum to pop in on her during the day. She’d been fine, and they’d had a little explore together. At the moment, we’re confining her to an area of the house that excludes the kitchen and lounge – so she feels like she has her space, and to avoid any mishaps! On Friday night, I stayed in with her and eventually she went to the toilet – after 24 hours of living with us and holding it in. A small triumph! She used the litter tray with no problems and Sam and I breathed a sigh of relief!

Day by day, she’s getting more and more adventurous. Last night we let her test out the sofa, and shes been enjoying roaming around. We have found she spends hours digging up her litter during the night which is a little irritating – I worry it’s boredom but hope she will soon adjust to our routine and sleep when we sleep. My next challenge is to make her enjoy a cuddle – although she likes a fuss, it’s on her terms and she struggles when picked up, something the shelter warned us about. I’m super pleased to have a kitty at home again and can’t wait for a time where she is content to wander around and we don’t have to worry about her too much. I’d completely encourage anyone who is looking for a cat or kitten to try a shelter – I’ve had four of the loveliest cats that have all been rescued and there are so many more that need homes!

Tell me more about Katherine-Louise

If you’ve landed here, you’re probably looking to find out more about Katherine-Louise. Run by me, Kat - put simply I'm a 30 year old who is decidedly normal. My blog is a destination for women just like me - the same interests and aspirations, working our way through the same twists and turns of life. Katherine-Louise is designed to inspire and inform; to give you a break from the norm as well identify with the beauty of routine. A fifteen minute recoup, or an hours vacation, it’s the go-to for Everyday-Joe’s, just like me, who want a few minutes off the radar.