We did something unexpected this week and adopted a 6 year old Burmese cat that needed to be re-homed.
It was ‘sort of’ the right timing – we fell in love with a burmese owned by my Dad and his partner earlier this year on our visit to Tassie, and had the seed of a burmese and their ‘dogginess’ firmly planted, and while we thought we would get to it ‘soonish’ – there was no plan. We haven’t even fully unpacked yet, but we are ‘settled’ and looking forward and unwinding and looking forward to the holidays, which will now be filled with something extra to occupy our lives.
“Rory” – as his previous owner called him, seemed to have become a handful – yowling at night, spraying sometimes and displaying anxiety. He was advertised on the back of our school’s newsletter by a school parent who is also a vet. So I called – chatted to a few of the vets at the clinic he was staying at about his anxieties and what the possible issues might be, and we went in and met him.
Love. Instant – all around love and excitement. And a renaming to celebrate new beginnings (which was advised). He is now Oscar in our home.
Oscar came home on Saturday and settled in nicely. I’m pleased to say we have had no night-time yowling, no spraying, plenty of tummy-tickle requests and the odd very-gentle love-nip (which is more of a mouth hold with slight pressure) with a few licks to follow. Perhaps they are kisses – what do we know. He is sleeping on our bed. He is THE most delightful little guy and we just can’t see any problems at all.
The most remarkable thing though is how unaccustomed the kids are to pets. I guess I just assumed that it was instinctual. I grew up with a dog, and just knew how to pat it, and chat to it, pick it up and roll around with it. That’s not the case in our house.
I don’t mean to suggest that they’ve never been exposed to animals – we know people with pets. It’s just that having your own – with the quiet space to go off and have a chat seems to bring its own pressure. What if you pat them wrong? What if you upset them and they don’t bond with you? What if they just don’t choose to be with you – how devastating! What if they choose someone else’s bed to sleep on, what if they think you smell funny? What if they think you are ignoring them – instead of being respectful and waiting for them to come to you and then don’t try again.
It’s a little hard to say lighten up when it’s so desperately important. Which is wonderful actually – that it is desperately important, and while I knew this was going to be a good thing, I didn’t really know HOW good until he entered our home.
I always thought I was more of a dog person, but it’s undeniably lovely to share your home with an independent spirit who would like to be near you. Who doesn’t need walking and who does his business in a box. Plus – he can climb the stairs, which I don’t think a dog could, and is happy to lounge around all day instead of fretting about being alone. He’s a perfect fit really.
As I was signing the papers, I noticed another leaflet on the counter for an adorable little terrier, and thought it worth mentioning (in case you didn’t know) that vets often re-home animals, and that if you are considering taking an animal, it may be a good first step – to talk to your local vet and see if there’s a little someone who has come from a happy home and might need a little rescuing.