Thursday, October 16, 2008

The Cat

Here he is. The sweet baby who has come to visit us every night since showing up early Tuesday morning.
He's so affectionate and playful. I unfortunately found a tick - like an engorged tick - on him last night. I tried to pull it off but he wouldn't have it.
If anyone is looking for a cat let me know! He's obviously a male (huge cajones back there) and I'm pretty sure he's not neutered. I'm going to try to find a shelter or somewhere to bring him to since I think I can get him in a carrier pretty easily. I can't take him in - no matter how much I want to.
I already have 3 cats. The first one, Sawyer, an orange tabby, was found by a co-worker of mine in an alley. She brought him home but couldn't keep him. The minute she brought him into the office trying to find a home for him, I fell in love. And when I brought him home, my husband was equally smitten. He is our little babycat sweetheart, apple of our eye kitty boy.
And a complete ham for the camera.
The second, Mia, a salt and pepper tabby with white paws, we adopted from PetSmart as a companion for Sawyer. She's a sweetie but has always been very skittish - despite the fact that we've had her for over 4 years now! She does have her affectionate moments though but otherwise she's a true cat in every stereotypical way. And not very cooperative when it comes to taking her picture so I have no visuals.
The third, Marley, has only been with us about a little over a year. He, like this sweet kitten below:
was another homeless stray in the neighborhood. Once we became "friends", I decided it was time to take him in. But first, I knew that he needed a vet visit. I wasn't sure if he was neutered and of course there are all the other cat diseases that he could have - although he looked perfectly healthy.
Well I nearly burst out crying when the vet told me that he tested positive for FIV, which is also called Feline Aids. Humans can't contract it from cats, but cats can spread it to other cats through saliva, bite wounds, rough play etc. At first, I didn't know what to do since I couldn't bring him inside with my other cats. So I bought Marley a little wooden weather-proof house online as well as a weather-proof heating pad for his "house" to keep him warm and dry once cold weather hit. But all he would do was meow and cry at the patio door all day long to come in. First I brought him inside the garage but that didn't work. Again, he cried all day long in the garage. All he wanted to do was come inside.
So we brought him in and put him up in our basement. Now I know it sounds cruel, but our basement is pretty big and it's fixed up and it keeps him separated from the other cats, but gives him a loving home. My husband reluctantly replaced the wooden door to the basement with a screen door so Marley can see up stairs and feel like he's part of the rest of the crowd. As far as I can tell, he loves it down there. He never cries, just sits on the top step watching everything that he can. I think he's happy. And despite the fact that he has FIV, he seems very healthy. The vet said when the time comes to put him down, we'll know because once FIV gets bad it happens quickly. But for now all is good.
That said, adding a fourth cat to the mix would drive all of us crazy. Not to mention the fact that people would probably start giving me looks when they asked if we had any pets and I responded, "Yes, 4 cats." But more than that, I just think 4 is too many for us. The hair factor is already out of control. Hopefully I'll find a place for this little guy.
Until then he's welcome on my patio.


KMAYS said...

Aww kitties! We had a cat who had FIV once. Unfortunately, he got an eye infection which then spread, and he had to be put down. You're a woman after my own heart!

Anonymous said...

Aw he looks like a cat my friend found once that I tried to take in as a companion for Reggie. Unfortunately my sweet little Reggie Roo is a bully and did not like that cat at all. Good luck finding him a home!

That Girl said...

He looks JUST like my boy...but much smaller.

anita bajaj said...

What a sweet story. I always liked your writing... :-)

karen said...

we have a stray that comes around our house all the time too. like you, i have three already and couldn't imagine bringing in a 4th. but it's hard not to want to. hopefully, you'll find someone to take him in. :)

Anonymous said...

Oh, that's so sad! I didn't even know about this NIV stuff. God, my heart breaks for the fella. You're such a good person though... for taking him in. What about giving his old weatherproof house to the new kitty?