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When you adopt a cat, every day is amazing. You get to interact with a small, furry, childlike person who may speak a very different language, but who definitely understands love.

The same is true when a cat adopts you.

Four years ago, during a small summer barbecue in the backyard, my family was adopted. A tiny, severely malnourished, sweet gray cat with a loud voice frightened my young daughter and chased her across the lawn. "It's just a cat!" we shouted reassuringly - whereupon she turned around and, all innocence and eagerness, chased the little gray cat back across the lawn. Eventually we got it all sorted out over a hamburger slider.

The little gray cat clearly needed help. She was far too thin, her paws were ragged, and her ear crinkled with injury and rehealed. She had no microchip or identification. For weeks, all she did was eat ravenously (that hamburger was gone in seconds) and sleep. But after lots of care, good food, and love, she woke up - and turned into a healthy and active young cat.

Today Jazzi is a mischievous, playful, loving member of the family. She still loves to eat, but she also loves to be brushed, plays endlessly with paper and cardboard, and considers the bath mat her personal property. She pokes fun at the other cats, too, which is a good thing; they need a little waking up every now and again.

Sure we rescued her. She wouldn't have survived much longer on the streets. But she added something sweet and irreplaceable to our family as well. We wouldn't be the same without her.

We're so grateful to have been adopted.

Rain City, WA

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