It’s 3:53 am
Thought I would re-post from my Blogspot page on how I ended up adopting Paladin. Not very many people ever get a chance to live with a real cheetah.
Its 10:18 pm
Its cool and dark outside,fall is slowly making its way here while summer is still hanging on. It was a rainy day but still pretty warm considering. I know I am racing the clock when it comes to get getting ready for winter. But after next week,I will be able to get some badly needed work done on my house and get the Rodger Young checked out for winter as well. My job is only 3.4 miles from my house but I happen to drive through the most dangerous intersection in Michigan on a daily basis so making sure my car is ready has to happen!
So the big news of the day is I have a new cat to share my life with. I want to stress that while I wish I had more time to let Derek’s passing ease a little,quite frankly,I just couldn’t go much longer without some life in this house or there wasn’t going to be any life at all. So I started looking at the various rescue groups in the area. There were no Scottish Folds to be had and I already knew that,so I started looking at other cats.
After poking around here and not really seeing anyone who spoke to me,my friend Theresa suggested looking at Taylor and some of the rescues there. While I was doing that,a co-worker told my friend Kim about a small kitten that had been abandoned by her new house. We took on that and I asked the co-worker,Edie,if she could handle the cat. At first she said “yes” and that it was very friendly. But when it came to go get it,I asked her to secure it in a room until I could drive out there. I can’t afford the gas for a wild goose chase and needed to be sure it was there.
Edie gave it a run by trying to pick it up but it wasn’t having any of that and it squirmed out of her hands and bolted away. It was a valiant effort however.
I was looking for a pair of brother cats and that is what I was looking for…I asked about a handsome cat named Rex in Taylor but they didn’t seem too sure about about any behaviour issues and if he could be handled safely. So sadly,I had to move on again.
I went to another local rescue called Homeward Bound right here in Canton. I looked at their selection of cats and thought I had hit paydirt,there were two 7 month old black and white cats who were brothers,ready to be adopted. I sent in via email my paperwork for the adoption background check.
The next day,the group sent a mail back saying they got my paperwork but not my answers! So I refilled and mailed back.
Friday afternoon,the contact person,Nancy,called and left a message. I called her back,played phone tag and waited. 20 minutes later she called…
Nancy was a foster mom for Homeward Bound and she was fostering the cats I liked. Fostering a dog or a cat is just as it seems. You are fostering them until a shelter space opens up or if they are recovering from a medical issue. You are a temporary home,not a forever home. It takes a special kind of pet lover to foster and ONLY foster. Nancy was not that kind of person. The first thing she said was the cat I asked about,well her son wanted it since they had raised him from a kitten. But she said the other one could go along with another litter mate. This was not my intention,I wanted the cat that I applied for and that was on the website. But when she said that the cats weren’t neutered,I got a bad feeling about this. And when she said she had 12 cats in her home and that the adoption fee was 125.00 per cat,I knew it was a hopeless cause. She told me that Huron Valley Animal Rescue was having a huge giveaway due to a huge hoarding case in Ypsilanti that had happened this week. A total of 88 cats were rescued from some of the worst conditions animal control officers had ever seen. The shelter needed all the spots so every cat above 5 months old were being given away free.
Nancy,whom I suspect we’ll be hearing about in a future hoarding case,did her group no favors with how poorly she handled this. Her job is to place the cats in loving forever homes,not bait and switch the cats there. I definitely would never suggest Homeward Bound as a loving rescue group if that is the caliber of people they have working under there banner.
Yesterday morning I woke and watched my first college football game of the year,Northern Illinois at Purdue. NIU was kicking Purdue’s ass up and down the field. So at halftime I brought up Huron Valley’s website up so I could see what and who was up for adoption. There was a lot of cute cats so I jumped up,grabbed by keys and wallet and headed to Dixboro.
It was a strange feeling,this was the first time I had driven this route since Lori. This was the way I drove when she was in the hospital. It brought a flood of emotions to me as I drove and I had to pull over to compose myself.
I reached the shelter and it was jammed pack,nary a parking spot to be had…I parked on a berm along with other folks and walked in.
The hallway was crowded but it was a organized chaos. The volunteers and staff had everything in order.
You came in,signed some paperwork to get a pet pass (which is good for 90 days) and they guided you along the shelter.
I did the paperwork,got my pass and went it. The first I saw was in a cage by himself with cute lettering saying he was Duncan,the Ladies Man. He was handsome but there was a lot of cats to look at. I walked through every cage and petted some nice cats. Many were older surrenders who had been there for months..but on this weekend,many would going home to new loving cat parents. I saw box after pet box of cats leaving with excitied families. As I was walked around,I kept thinking of that Duncan cat and how personable he seemed to be. So as I headed back to meet him,I saw a young couple walk into his cage and start petting him. Suddenly,I knew I wanted to adopt him,I could see how sweet he seemed to be.
It was rotten but they were inside,I grabbed his adoption page and got in line. I felt better once they left but didn’t bother to look for his paperwork.
When I told the staff member I wanted to adopt Duncan,she was really happy. He had been turned in as a stray 6 months ago but he wasn’t a stray. He had been neutered so he either was lost or abandoned…and in his case,I daresay he was lost.
It took about 30 minutes to complete the paperwork,in that time I met the arresting officer in the hoarding case. Sadly,two cats had died due their terrible conditions with another 10-12 in a 50-50 mode for survival.
The woman was charged with animal cruelty and her house was condemned because it was unlivable.
The staff told me Duncan was an escape artist and to be aware of that. Several members came back to say goodbye and that he was a good cat.
With that,we drove the 15 miles home,I told him his new name was Paladin and he stayed quiet up right when we got home.
Why only one cat? Because Paladin doesn’t play nice with others at all….and when I let him loose in the house…it was pretty intense. He started sniffing very heavy and jumped on the window sill. He was hissing and growling but I excepted that….I had closed off the pantry and spare bedroom and let him have his head to explore.
I popped down and said hello every 15 minutes or so…but never approached him,forcing contact with only scare him and get my self scratched or seriously bitten. The roughest moment was he started coming forward growling towards me…I told him,I understand you are scared but if you attack me,we’re going to have a problem. He looked at me and I said “A major problem”. He jumped back on the window and I went upstairs after setting up his food and water and litter.
I left to check Crash and spent some time with him before coming back…Paladin was at the door but I gently shooed him back. He hissed but didn’t growl.
An hour later he came upstairs for a visit and explore. He went back down but came up and jump on the bed…he marked me,gave me a head bunt and went to my bedroom window.
I went down to secure the house and he rubbed against my leg and hissed. I had to laugh at that but he then played with his toys and meowed at me.
Today is great,he has accepted me except he has biting issues when he gets petted too much,this can be corrected with training He loves the window sill and when I leave my front door open. He tried to come with me out the back door and I had to use my lunchbox to push him back. He does seem very unsure about the stairs,especially the basement. But again,those are things we can work on together. I am letting him call the shots as when he wants to play or be petted,he is relaxing quite rapidly. Next week I will see if I can hold him and how he reacts to that,he has to pass that test. I have to know I can handle him in case of a medical issue and need to get him in the carrier. So wish us luck with that…
Got my review today at work. It was a very nice review and my DH was very thoughtful in how she wrote it.
She was very respectful of what has been happening but she said she thought I had a “quirky sense of humor” with my peers while taking my job very serious. Hmm,sounds like my old days at the EDGE,I am all about fun but the job has to come first. She encouraged me to take the next step forward and I intend to do that,I feel like I really need to start pushing myself hard again. I can’t stay in the dark forever,right? I know that Lori would want me to move my ass…but its very tough to do that at times. One thing I need to do better is stick with my to-do lists,get projects lined up and follow through all the way.
And I need to write here more again…I notice when I don’t write,my mood worsens. Hence back to grind of more regular writing….
And with that,let me wrap this up. There is always tomorrow.
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