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Found behind a door - now beloved "little spoon"

When my wife and I first moved in together, we found a tiny kitten behind a door in our apartment complex. He was all alone with nothing but a water bowl next to him - obviously someone left him there on purpose, or at the very least people were noticing him but not doing anything about it. We scooped him up and brought him to the property management office to see if anyone had reported a missing kitten. No one had, so we brought him back to our apartment. We hadn't been intending on adopting a kitten that day, but after we put him on the bed, he curled up and went right to sleep and we knew that was a sign that he was meant to be with us. He is now six years old and enjoys laying in sun spots and cuddling up between us at night - he is our "littlest spoon" and is the kindest, most mellow cat I have ever had the pleasure of knowing. He is the "big brother" of the three cats we have since adopted, and I am grateful every day that he came into our lives.

Sarah Angelo-Haight
Ely, IA

Wasn't looking for another pet.

My husband & I found out in March that we were pregnant & that the next little feet in our house would be our son. Well we were wrong. We went out to a Water Ice shop where a % went to a friend who was doing a bike ride to support people with MS. We're minding our own business talking when hearing this crying noise. I haven't had a cat in so long that I thought it was a crow. But our friend said it was a cat. Well I had to go find this cat to make sure it was all right. There was this little white kitten under a truck tire screaming his head off. We took him to the vet the next day to see if he was micro chipped. He wasn't. They said he was a stray and that to keep him separated from Sadie our rescued terrier mix who we had also brought with us to the vet for shots and to give the two pets each others blankets to get them used to each others scent. Well once they let go of Spook, he is quiet and sneaks up on us all the time which is how he got his name, he walks over to Sadie, head butts her, and they have been best of friends ever since.

He is sweet, playful, loves the dog, and we're all his.

Jenn
Sewell, NJ

Elliott

We weren't looking for a dog or pet at all. We have three cats. A friend found this puppy on the side of the road, clearly starving. I saw his face and thought, okay, we can do this. We named him Elliott and the fist couple of days were great. He laid in my lap and slept. I thought, "having a puppy is easy." Then, he got energy and a lot of it. He has been a lot of work. He has had many illnesses due to his depressed immune system. He loves dog parks and doggy daycare. He is a loving member of our family. I couldn't stand to not know what he is, pit bull being my worst fear. All I know about pit bulls is from the news. The DNA revealed he is Boxer, American Staffordshire Terrier (pit bull) and Colliie. He is not vicious. He is not scary. He is a puppy that was looking for his family. This picture is a "one year later" picture. The first picture is the day he came to live with us. The second is one year later. He is the love of our life. We wouldn't trade him for anything.

Sally Miska
Gahanna, OH

A Once in a Lifetime Cat

I married my amazing husband in 2012, but due to the fact that he was deploying to Afghanistan a few months after we got married (and the fact that he “didn’t like cats”) I was living without a cat for the first time in my life. Unfortunately, two months into my husband’s deployment he was injured and had to be brought home for rehabilitation. It was then that we decided a cat was a good idea. He knew when he was healed he would return to finish his tour of duty and he wanted me to have a companion. When we went to animal control to look at cats I wasn’t sure what to expect, but as soon as I walked into the kennel a small tabby, tucked away at the back of the room, stood up, stretched her paw as far out of her cage as possible and meowed at me. I knew she had picked me. Lola came home with us that same day. Although she was supposed to be my cat she quickly became my husband’s. She slept next to him and purred when she sensed his nightmares and she would distract him by asking him to play fetch with my hair-elastics whenever she sensed his anxiety episodes setting in. She may have come into our home for me but she turned out to be the perfect medicine for my husband. When he returned to Afghanistan she was my constant companion and she kept me sane through the stress. She has been with us for two years now and even has a little sister named Sadie, who my husband enthusiastically decided to adopt. Lola is truly one of those once in a lifetime animals. Not only did she help my husband heal but in doing so she completely changed his mind about cats!

Amanda Moreno
College Station, TX

we are not cat lovers

First, we are animal lovers, but not cat lovers. Many times, I have brought stray cats into the garage and found them homes. In October 2010, I took in a black and white cat and named him Jennifer after my BFF until I found he was a boy and we named him Tyler. He was skin and bones and very sick. After having him "fixed", we found out that he had pneumonia and required a vaporizer. We put him upstairs in a large storage room which had a window and got him a bed at the window. We later found out that he cardiomyopathy; which is fatal. Therefore, everyone that we had lined up to take him, would not take him.. Meanwhile, my husband fell in love with him.. Well, I have been allergic to cats since I was little. I went for testing and the doctor said to get rid of the cat. I said that I wanted to try the shots. More than 3 years later, I’m still getting two shots a week and living with two cats. With all of the shots and meds, I’m completely find which is hard to believe with my severe cat allergies but I am. Last summer, a cat was hit by a car. WE took in her 6 kittens. 4 were black and gray tabbies and we found homes for them.. 1 was pure white with two blue eyes and deaf; we kept her. We turned that storage room into a cat room.. Although small, they have a garden window, huge cat tree, toys, jungle gym, and cat walk in the room.. they sleep in there and most of the day and come out for about 6-8 hours a day. They are happy, very friendly, and have a wonderful life. They are all mommy girls and Tyler is a daddy boy; he is a lap cat, but still follows mommy around. I have so many pictures of the cat room and that I would like to share!!!! please let me know how to share multiple pictures of the room.

renee kozlowski
bear, DE

Cheshire Cat

My boyfriend had recently moved out on his own, I could tell he was lonely. We decided that he needed to adopt a cat to keep him company. We looked online and chose to visit a local shelter with one particular kitten in mind. When looking in the cage, the kitten we wanted hissed at us and the attendant said "He doesn't do well with others, he needs a little more work". We were still contemplating, when a little white paw stuck out from the cage above as if to say "Look up here! I'm sitting right here!" The cage was so dark we hadn't even seen the tiny kitten inside. We took him out of his cage and he immediately curled up in my boyfriend's arms. We immediately knew the little black and white kitten was for us.

Four years later Cheshire (from Alice in Wonderland) has become our very best friend. He brings so much joy and entertainment to our little family. He plays fetch, chases his tail, and shows our two dogs who is boss. He spends his free time running laps around the apartment. I cannot imagine life without our little fur ball. He's been with us through so many life changing events (including a marriage). Cheshire always seems to know when you need a cuddle or a good laugh.

Though he contracted a chronic respiratory infection from his time in the shelter, he doesn't let that slow him down. He is the most energetic and loving cat that I have ever met. We are forever grateful that he stuck his little paw out and claimed us as his family.

Allison
Roanoke, VA

A miracle under the car

I first met Mimi under a car when I was in vacation with my grandparents.The kitten was scared and very dirty. She was so skinny I could see her rib cages clearly. I was reluctant to touch the dirty cat, but I was touched by the beautiful green eyes of hers. I knew that this kitten would go to Animal Shelter sooner or later, or even die of starvation because it couldn't survive on itself. So I picked it up and carried it to my grandparents' door. My grandma was a cat lover, but my grandpa...not so much. He hated all kinds of animals, and after we took Mimi in, my grandfather was going to throw it out so many times, but luckily my grandma protected the innocent soul. When I heard that I would be going back to Beijing, my home, soon, I was scared that my parents wouldn't accept a new family member into our home. But, as I was calling my mother and as I told her about the kitten, my mom immediately agreed, because she owned many cats when she was little and my mom was also a cat lover. After a few days, my mom came to pick me, and our new friend, Mimi, up and back to Beijing. Pets weren't allowed to go on trains, so we asked my uncle to secretly pass us the cat in a box after we go through station where they check your luggage and clothes. The trip was overnight, so we had beds to sleep on. I hid the kitten behind the backpack, and our roommates helped keep the secret from the train attendants. When we reached Beijing, this cat became the best cat I had ever known. She is now 7 years old and lives with my aunt, because my family had to stay at Kazakhstan for 3 years. We stayed at my aunt's house every summer and winter break. This is now the third year in Kazakhstan, and I can't wait until we move back to China so I can live with my cat again!

Mariana Cui
Beijing, China

My Beloved Schnuki

When my mother passed away, I was faced with the dilemma of what to do with her cat, Schnuki. Schnuki had never liked me, I had never found her particulrly magical or even that cute, but I felt the right thing to do would be to keep her. My mother never would have refused my cats if the roles were reversed, so there it was : I was adding a fourth cat to my household.

Although she had behavioral urinary issues I tried to control with Prozac, which later turned into bladder stones, I somehow learned to put up with it. I did always feel she was separate from the rest of my group until I had a pet psychic do a reading on my group, and she said that Schnuki felt the same.That pretty much broke my heart. From that point on, I made a point to stop referring to her as "my mom's cat" and started calling her mine.

Schnuki's illness came swiftly. She got an infection which caused her to lose 6 pounds far too quickly, which effected her liver. That, along with hyperthyroidism was a mix that caused her to to be found by me practically rigid, barely breathing, and clearly dying.

I was lucky enough to have five years of her magical love; I just wish it hadn't taken me so long to realize how much she loved me. Now I know she's frolicking on Rainbow Bridge with my mother and sweet prince Carlo, my ginger boy, who died of kidney failure two months ago. It's so hard to love and then lose these beautiful creatures, but I consider myself lucky to have had them in my life at all.

Kirsten
Los Angeles, CA

Pretty as a Daisy

Daisy was given to us by a local rescue group to foster since they were full up. I took her home and acclimated her with our other wonderful babies. She loved cats, but didn't like people. I don't know how they ever caught her, because she's so fearful of people. I had no paperwork on her background, but could tell immediately by her fear and by the scars on her that she was abused. She has spots around her neck that have no fur at all. We had her awhile and no one came forward to adopt her. Because she was so scared, we felt it was best she stayed with us and adopted her. Although she still shows fear at times, she now loves her playmates and will come to us to be petted. One of our male cats took her under his wing and so she favors him - so much that at times he gets frustrated with her constant rubbing on him for attention! We are happy to have this pretty little Daisy (the name she came with). I hope someone who has ever hurt an animal, look at that face and see what a sweet one it is and learn to never hurt an animal again. They love us unconditionally. People are supposed to be the smart species - if this is true then no harm should ever come to an animal like this. Open your heart and let an animal in, you'll never regret it.

Laura
Lyndonville, NY

Ares My Special Angel

In June of 1998 while deciding what to do for the day, I “heard” a voice in my mind say: “Go to Animal Control.” I heard it as plain as if someone was standing next to me.

At the shelter I fell in love with a two month old white lab/pit mix puppy. There were six names on his potential adopters list – each one crossed out. I took him home then and there. Ares - who was always more of a love bug than a god of war - was full of fleas and had a bad case of worms, both of which were taken care of that first week.

Ares was a little ball of energy and wonderful playmate for my other dog Nikita. He was a constant companion to me. I had a bond with him like no other. I literally trusted him with my life. He always looked out for me.

Ares crossed over the Rainbow Bridge on 23 August 2010. He had had a very sudden onset of canine vestibular syndrome which degenerated to the point where he could not walk at all. It was one of the saddest moments of my life, but I knew I had to let him go – for his sake. I was with him through to the end, lying on the floor next to him in my Vet’s office, as he crossed over the Rainbow Bridge.

You try not to have favorites. Especially among your furry children, as they sense your feelings and thoughts. But even after all this time, I still miss and mourn my wonderful Ares. He was one of a kind. Extremely unique. To this day, I believe with my whole heart that if I were ever in extreme danger, I could call his name, and he would come to my rescue.

Linda Coffelt
Virginia Beach, VA
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