I was going to use one of my favorite cartoon lines of all time for a headline, but was afraid it would get lost in translation. It’s more about what kind of pet person I am. Hopefully, you can sound it out: I tawt I taw a puddy tat.”
I did. And we’ll get to the point of where in a few paragraphs.
My girls have been bugging me to get a pet since we lost our two cats over the course of a year in 2017 and 2018. I was reluctant for a couple of reasons. I had to put our oldest cat down due to kidney failure. While the folks at Amigo Animal Clinic were wonderful in providing comfort and compassion, putting down a family member just isn’t something I wanted to do again. Our other cat was banished to the outdoors because of peeing problems (it’s a long story, and please don’t hate on me for the end result) and would go missing ( in her mind adventuring) for days and weeks. We worried our little hunter had become the “huntee” only to show back up. But this past winter she passed as well. Too old and too cold, in spite of my humanitarian, electrical and insulation efforts.
While I grew up with cats, I never had one die. My folks gave away our original cat, Snowball, as we prepared to move to Colorado back in the 1970s — a move that actually didn’t occur for my parents until the early 1990s. When they did make the move, they took the next cat in our family lineage, a Siamese with no name. (Maybe America could do a comeback hit “A Cat With No Name” set in the mountains.) By then, I was living on my own.
I remember a couple of things about our cats. They lived to a ripe old age and always hung out and slept with yours truly. That also was the case with the two cats I got in my divorce. Burgundy died at 17 and Baby Kittycat (named by a 2-year old, and no, not the one writing this) died at 16.
I was their go-to when it came to taking over bed space. While I didn’t camp outside with our little hunter, Baby Kittycat, I did spend quality time with Burgundy as my snuggle partner. The companionship was priceless, especially during the off weeks with no kiddos after I became a single dad.
Whether it was out of concern or pity, my girls had been on me to get a new companion for around the house. They would have preferred a dog (I have no idea why, maybe because our cats claimed me as supreme ruler and object of their affection) and were relentless to no avail. Let’s face it: I’m a cat guy. I’ve only had four pets in my 57 years on this orb, and they were all cats who all lived long long lives. So what did my girls do? Change the topic to getting a kitty.
For some reason on a Saturday, something came over me. Or perhaps, as daughters can make a daddy do, I gave up and decided was time to get a new kitty. There’s was only one place to get our new family member: the Roice-Hurst Humane Society.
It was there one picture caught the eyes of me and the girls: a little cutie named Fera who’s had a rough and adventurous three months on Earth. Fera was found in a ditch, undernourished and suffering a serious bout of ear mites. She had a couple of tummy bouts with bacteria and had a hard time “making weight.” Did you know kittens had to make weight? Me neither. Then again,
I also didn’t know there was a cat season at Roice-Hurst, and we’re just at the beginning of it. As the folks there explained, they’ll be loaded with kittens and cats galore through the end of the year. But it turns out there’s a lot about Roice-Hurst I didn’t know (OK, perhaps forgot) that’s worth mentioning.
The adoption process is pretty serious with strict guidelines. They run adoption parenting classes offering advice for how to best train your new family loved one. They run a foster pet program for pets that require special attention and can’t be in the shelter. And they do an amazing job with wonderful people loving on pets the year around. Oh yeah, they’re also now on my “let’s support these good folks” charity list as well.
If you decide to open your heart and home to a new, furry, family member, consider Roice-Hurst as your source. Don’t forget: Many pets at our pet stores are from Roice-Hurst as well, so there are a few ways to support them.
Even if you don’t leave with a new fur baby, write ’em’ a check anyway. They’re truly doing great work.