Saturday, November 27, 2010

Our Personal Personal Pet and Rescue BJ

This week's story was submitted by one of our CFA-Guild Members Debra of Sleepy Cat Designs and Sew Bizzy Gifts on Artfire.
Debra is a self proclaimed cat-a-holic. She loves to make various kinds of craft items, but her favorite thing is working with fabric.

This is a story about a beautiful orange cat who came into her life very cautiously & is the inspiration for her cat related items. Thank you for sharing this great story with us, Debra.




What a gorgeous orange tabby, I thought, as I walked into the “new arrivals” room at The Hermitage Cat Shelter in Tucson, Arizona, that hot August afternoon in 2005. I had been wandering around this marvelous, no-kill facility that houses about 400 cats of every shape, size, color, and type. I was on a mission to see all the orange tabbies.

That’s because I had my heart set on adopting an orange tabby cat this time. My long-time furry friend, Chelsea, a gorgeous solid gray kitty, had died in July at the age of 19 (she had moved in with me at the age of 3 months). She was not sick…she just died of “old age.” What a fun life we had together…traveling all over the country. But those are other stories…this is about my quest for a new pet. I was missing having a furry companion to share my life with; and though I was still grieving her loss, I knew my recovery would only be helped by finding a new kitty who needed a good home. I wanted an older cat, one others did not want. Kittens are amazing but too much for me to handle these days! I’m older and disabled, and I knew I needed a more settled and laid-back companion.

So, regarding this particular one who caught my eye, I was told his name was Beetlejuice (yikes!). His golden-green eyes were huge as I got closer to him, perched high on that wall unit. I asked the staff if I could see him, and it took about 20 minutes for him to be “caught.” Poor fellow, he was a little frightened. But once the staff got him down from the wall unit, he ran into a cubby on the floor nearby and I sat down on the floor to try to get to know him. He watched me cautiously, eyes still huge.

I slowly reached one hand toward the cubby opening, and to my delight, this big guy allowed me to rub his head and chin, and he loved it! I pulled my hand away and in a few moments, after giving it a little thought, he came out of the cubby to head-butt my hand! Then he flopped down on the floor near me and rolled over and showed me his belly. And he was purring! So I cautiously reached out to touch his belly fur, and he scooted over a little closer so I could rub it really well. A tummy rub on the first meeting! Wow! The staff and volunteer workers were amazed because he had not let anyone else do that! And of course, I was smitten! He ran back into the cubby a few times to hide when noises frightened him or when I moved too quickly. But he would come back out each time and let me pet him again, always flopping down and rolling over for me to rub his gorgeous white belly!

Needless to say, I was in love and so after 2 more visits and a home visit which led to me being approved to adopt this special-needs kitty (who needed a quiet, one-person, one-kitty home), I was allowed to take him to my tiny apartment. He was so shy to begin with, but in time he has learned to welcome all of our visitors (rather than hiding in the tub) and spends lots of time in my lap, purring loudly, finally able to relax and be happy. He does not even flinch when the phone rings now!

By the way, I changed his name to Chester…which is much more appropriate for this handsome, 18-pound, gentle giant. And he seems to like it, always coming when I call his name or answering me if he is too busy lounging in one of his three beds! Spoiled, you may say. Most definitely, I would reply, just as he should be!


TS Beading said...

What a heartwarming story! You are truly Chester's Angel Debra. Not only do cats have 9 lives, I also believe they have a sixth sense about people. It seems to me that he picked you before you picked him.

The shelter is such a scary place for animals, especially the older ones that are used to having a home. What a traumatic experience, but it sounds like you've loved him out of his fears.

Thanks for sharing!

Michelle said...

You really are an angel for giving this handsome, shy cat a loving home. It sounds like you two were meant for each other :)
-Michelle of CreativeCritters

Debra said...

Thank you for the kind remarks. Yes, we saved each other, and I have often thought he seemed to know I would be a good purrson for him! It's so nice to have pets to love and be loved by.

evt1618 said...

I've had the wonderful pleasure of meeting Chester and having him slowly get used to me over a period of time (he did indeed used to hide in the tub!). What a beautiful story. You two are my favorite pair.

Debra - Sew Bizzy Gifts said...

Thanks evt - you love kitties and Chester knows it...and that is why he has come to trust and enjoy your attention and calm presence. Just wish you were able to visit more often!! We miss you!