New Family Member

As you all know, we lost our 13 year old cat, Dixie, in November. I decided in mid December that I needed a furry companion as I was sure missing my girl. Once I said the words, I had all kinds of friends trying to get me to take cats/kittens off their hands. I went and visited a couple but none of them seemed to be interested in me at all. I’ve had the cat that didn’t bond with me twice and it’s not what I wanted to happen. I’m a firm believer that your pet picks you.

On the day before my birthday, my kids took me to the animal shelter to see what they had kitten-wise. There was one who I swear would’ve been the kid in class who knew the answer and would be bouncing up and down in his chair yelling “Pick me, pick me.”

This kitten had his paw out of the cage waving it. He was leaping all around and yelling. My older son opened the door to the cage and took the kitty out. The kitty immediately lunged for me and climbed all over me, purring really loudly. My other son took him and it was all the kitten could do to fight him off and leap back on me. Yep. I’d found my cat.

My older son’s favorite comic strip was always Calvin and Hobbes. My younger son is minoring in philosophy and likes the philosopher Thomas Hobbes, so they agreed to name the cat Hobbes. So, the cat picked me, the kids picked his name and I guess I get to pick up the food at the store, right? We love our little fellow. He’s hilarious and a cuddle bug. He’s sitting on my chest as I type this. He’s very jealous of my iPad when I’m using it.

Sadly, one of my friends who wanted me to take a kitten from her isn’t talking to me right now. I couldn’t help it. That kitten had bonded to her and I didn’t want to take the chance of the fur baby being unhappy. I hope she gets over it because I hate to lose a friend over such a personal decision as the right pet. What do you think? Do our pets pick us? Should I have taken a pet that didn’t “speak” to my heart?

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17 responses to “New Family Member

  1. I am an animal lover to my core, and I tend to want to take in animals that need a home, whether they like me or not. For the sake of space and sanity, I don’t. But I am a firm believer that animals choose us. My cat was a stray that for a solid week would curl up on my lap when I sat on the deck before I took him in. Our pit bull that we rescued from the shelter is the sweetest, 60-pound lap dog ever. She sat there ever so patiently while we looked and was full of puppy kisses once we took her out of the kennel. Congrats on finding a new family member!

  2. Yep. I love animals, too, Shelley. This kitten I didn’t take seemed very attached to the woman who rescued her and who really wanted to keep her but her older cat wasn’t doing well with the new one. I once took in a cat in that same type situation and it ran away within 2 days and made its way back to its other home so I didn’t want to do that again. It was heartbreaking.

    I love that your rescue animals are so affectionate. They are sweeties, aren’t they?

  3. Valerie J. Patterson

    Yep, it’s got to be a kitten that chooses you otherwise you lose that oh-so-special bond that is a requirement in my house! You want the kitten to be a member of the family, not a boarder! Congrats on your new family member! He’s such a cutie! 😛

    PS, your friend should understand. Too bad doesn’t. I’m sure she wouldn’t want a pet forced on her, either.

    • Thanks Valerie. You said it perfectly. We want a family member. And this little guy is fitting the bill. He’s adorable.

      And yeah, she should understand but she kept saying the bond would happen when I fed the kitten. It’s sadly not true. I’ve been there.

  4. For us a pet is a full forever member of our family so I say choose carefully because we don’t turn them back if they have issues, who doesn’t have them? But I do have to say you are much much braver than I am. We had to say goodbye to Abby (Jack Russell) last week and I’m still crying and can’t talk about it. She would have been 15 in March, spoiled rotten and a dog in a million. I’m not getting anymore, I know I can’t go through this again. It’s heartbreaking. Seeing Hobbes pictures I know you’re being rewarded for your bravery. So happy for you.

    • Thanks Lavada. I agree about the forever family. And choosing carefully is necessary. So sorry about Abby. It is hard and it was hard for me to decide to do again but I was so sad with no furbaby to greet me that I had to do it. When our last cat died, it took me 2 years to feel ready.

    • Valerie J. Patterson

      I’m sorry for the loss of Abby, Lavada. I understand perfectly that you feel you can’t go through that pain again. Our Princess Leigh was 15, too when we lost her. That was in 2004, and we have never gotten another. We just can’t bring ourselves to do it. I’m certain Abby had a wonderful life with you.

  5. Pets definitely pick us. I say this as, like you, my Dude is snuggled on my chest, too. I’ve only truly bonded with a pet twice. As for your friend feeling that feeding the cat will create the bond…my husband has been feeding our Dude since we brought him home over 3 years ago. I feed him breakfast, he feeds him dinner. Dude won’t sit in his lap, only climbs on him when he wants fed. Heck, he’s never purred for my husband. Only for me. So it kind of debunks the “feed them and they will love you” theory. I do hope your friend finds a home for her new kitten.

    • I’m glad you have the bond with Dude, Laurie. I’ve got to agree with you. Feeding doth not make the bond. You either got it or you don’t. I’ve bonded with most of mine and the ones I haven’t, it’s been tough. I gave them a good home but it wasn’t the same. Like Lavada said, they become family and I’d never give one back that I’d adopted but I sure want them to fit in the family and not be a boarder like Valerie said.

  6. There was a time I would have said take the first one that you saw, they all need homes.On the other hand,it happened a few years ago that one was pawned-off on me who did not like me much.I found a home for her and that didn’t work, either.She ended up ill and I had to have her put to sleep.
    One I took in is not crazy about me,(one loves me to death), but I can deal with it.Here’s the thing,though.There are only so many homes for pets; take the one you like.Humane Societies put down many beautiful and healthy animals because they have no room, while people are taking the ill and hurt ones out of sympathy. If you aren’t outright hurting an animal or neglecting it, or causing it harm, make both of you happy and take one who likes you.
    Spaying and neutering is the answer to to the pet dilemma.

    Lavada, I am so sorry for your loss.

  7. Sounds like you made the right choice with kitty. Le’t s hope your friend gets over it soon. Pets can be so entertaining and comforting. I would love a house rabbit but my man says no. His reasons are sound and I can’t argue. My pets are thus the garden birds.

    • Ahh, Kit. I agree that I think I made the right choice. I hope my friend gets over it too but if she doesn’t, I’ll know then that the friendship wasn’t really such a great one after all.

      Enjoy your garden birds. My sister had a house rabbit and he was such a tough room mate, I think I’d think twice about that myself. LOL

  8. Hobbes is adorable, Jillian, and I so agree that an animal picks you. Having that amazing connection with a pet is priceless. It’s sad that your friend has taken offence over something like this, but sometimes it helps weed out your true friends from the fair-weather ones. Enjoy your little cutie 🙂

    • He’s a precious little monkey, Tricia. He’s fast and mischievous and I adore his little self. He’s so much the right kitty for our family. And yeah, it’s sad that my friend is so offended about it and I have to agree with you about true friends.

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