Imagine having a family that you love and trust, then one day being driven to a strange building and left behind with people, sights and smells unfamiliar (and scary!) to you.
That's what both Spooky and Buster experienced.
A kitty waiting for her Happily Ever After...
Spooky was an owner surrender in October, 2017. As she was handed over to staff, she wrapped herself tight. She was put in the cat room and went directly into hiding. She spent about a month under one of the benches in the cat room crying and growling. Volunteers had to push food under the bench for her to eat because she refused to come out. She got increasingly upset if anyone even tried to touch her. Eventually she came out, but hid in the corner.
Here's a personal account from Tammy, an Unleashed volunteer All Star, one of the most compassionate people I know, and the person I turn to to find out more about the animals at Unleashed:
Spooky is a talker and loudly expressed her disgust in being at the shelter and not in her home. Many people call her the "mean cat"... she often swipes at people, scolds them in a loud meow for petting her without permission, or runs away. After Thanksgiving, she would allow a few of us to sit near her. I gradually put my arm close to her and would sit together with her. One touching day, she leaned over onto my arm. It was a precious moment. Closer to Christmas I brought her some live catnip and it was the first time her eyes lit up. She rubbed her whiskers on that plant and seriously looked like she smiled.
Her heart was broken when she lost her family. She is a sweet kitty learning how to trust again. We have our moments where she allows the top of her head to be pet, she tells us all about her day and if the other kitties were too energetic for her, and she will eat treats from our hands. She will come around in a home for the person who sees past her "little attitude" She will touch her nose to our finger and she will lightly rub against your leg to solicit more treats. She is special in her own way.
And a fairy tale come true!
Buster handled his new situation a bit differently. Described as the "white fluffy Prince in the cat room", he perched his royal fluffness on the cat tower for a couple weeks but openly accepted petting and affection. The tower was his safe area. He did crave people and attention, so he eventually pushed himself to come out of the tower and get to know everyone. He discovered the sheer delight of feather boa toys and was so full of joy. (Apparently feathers make him happy and all silly).
Potential adopters came in over and over because of his beautiful pictures online. Buster would flirt and play with them until they said "I want this one!" And then...he would run to the top of the cat tower and hiss. He acted like a hot mess toward any potential adopters and was determined to stay in that cat room! THAT was his home!
In his mind, the tower truly was his "safe home" and nobody was going to get him. He did make many friends...human and feline. He even made friends with the rough players! He was perfect. Rather than be discouraged by his circumstances, he moved in "permanently".
We quickly realized he wanted to live there forever. Our focus with him was to convince him that despite his contentment for living at the shelter, he was meant for a family.
We decided that he would choose the family he wanted, whenever he decided he was ready. In early February, a family came into the shelter asking for a "long timer" who has been having a hard time getting adopted. They were told the story of Buster Dobbs, the silly, white, fluffy cat who thinks his forever home is the shelter. The family decided he was perfect and chose him.
Buster chose them back.
Everyone is hoping that like Buster, Spooky will find her happily ever after soon with that just right family or person. She is available through Unleashed Pet Rescue in Mission, Kansas. Please share this post, and also, consider volunteering, fostering, donating or adopting from your local shelter!
And to find out about other kitties available through Unleashed, click here!