Today, October 29th is National Cat Day and it has me feeling reflective. I've never had a cat growing up and since then have always had dogs (Betty and Henry!) and have therefore considered myself a "dog person". That's not to say I don't, or haven't liked cats. Working as a veterinary technician I've interacted with, and enjoyed meeting hundreds of cats and kittens over the years. Until 2 1/2 years ago I've always lived with a family member or roommate who was allergic to cats and so it was never really an option to have a cat. And I was a dog person anyways, right?
That was the case up until a year and a half ago when I walked into work at Latham Animal Hospital and met the feline love of my life - a 4lb sassy little old persian with urinary problems named Poop. I walked by his cage and did a double take. His face was so tiny! His eyes looked in different directions! His name was POOP. I was smitten. He wasn't feeling well and didn't like his urinary diet so we shared my pizza for lunch which further cemented my love. Two days later it was time for him to go home. I explained his home care instructions to his owner and then couldn't help but let her know how special I thought Poop was. How he was the crankiest, yet sweetest cat and that we shared my lunch for the past two days. They thanked me for his care and left. I felt so empty, I'd never been so attached to a patient before. Then one of the receptionists told me someone was on the phone for me. It was Poop's owner! She asked if I would be interested in adopting Poop since I seemed to like him so much, I was kind enough to share my food with him and because he would require a costly surgery and medical care likely for the rest of his life. I didn't know what to say except "Of course! Yes!".
Since then Poop has received his surgery to fix his urinary issues and is doing well on medication and in our home. He fits right in with the dogs and lives very happily in our room, begging for scraps of human food and receiving scratches, snuggles and endless love.
Since then I've adopted another cat, Priscilla. She was a long time foster of a wonderful and regular client at the Vet Hospital that no one was ever interested in due to her interesting appearance. Once I met her I (again) was smitten hoped she would be the perfect companion for Poop. Although they do not snuggle or interact as much as I'd hoped they seem to enjoy spending their days together, separately.
Adopting these cats has changed my life. Interacting with them has made me a better veterinary technician and now a more well informed pet boutique owner. Every toy, bed and treat in Henry Loves Betty is first approved by our in-house product testers Poop and Priscilla!
Happy National Cat Day, everyone!