We all know how important it is to spay/neuter our cats. Neutered males are less prone to spraying, roaming, being aggressive and of course eliminating unwanted pregnancies and their strong,smelly urine. The personality changes occur almost overnight like what happened to Gilbert, a new arrival at the shelter I volunteer at.
Gilbert, an unneutered surrender, and stunning young tabby with energy to spare was desperate to be let out. I opened the cage door and he quickly jumped to freedom but not before interacting with his neighbors. Ginger Boy AKA Joe of the Hardy Boys in the cage below reached out and they seem to like each other. My favorite Gray Boy AKA Frank of the Hardy Boys expressed curiosity but not the genuine fascination as Ginger Boy.
Whether with cats or humans, it remains a mystery who is attracted to who as friends or soul mates. Sometimes the bond or connection is instantaneous and sometimes it takes time. Gilbert explored the small room with confidence and expressed more interest in exploring than playing. His eyes implored, Lady, where is the exit? I want out of here.
When I placed him back in the cage, he went ballistic, banging up against the bars and meowing, let me out, let me out let meow out! It was Friday, surgeries are on Tuesdays and I hoped he wouldn’t injure himself before getting neutered.
The following Wednesday, I didn’t need to check his cage card to know he’d been neutered. He looked more sedate but his bloodied nose spoke of his last testosterone fueled attack against the cage bars. I opened the cage door and he jumped out but with less swagger and pent up energy. He prowled about, brushed up against for a petting and I marveled at his dramatic personality change. His Ginger Boy pal remained as interested as ever in this very handsome and adoptable cat. I think they might make a well matched pair for adoption.
UPDATE: Shelter life can change in a heartbeat.
My plan was to foster the Hardy Boys and then the unthinkable happened. My favorite Gray Boy and shelter muse died. He was taken to the vet on Saturday. They thought it was cancer and nothing could be done. His cage mate, the Ginger Boy is in a foster home and up for adoption.Sudden deaths never make sense and this one floored me. I’ve cried every day since. Gray Boy was so happy to see me last Wednesday, headbutting with extra vigor and he finally settled down enough to sit on my lap. He played with good energy and his distended abdomen of two weeks ago appeared better. He was on meds for anemia and I would have never suspected cancer.
When it was time for him to return to his cage he played games and wouldn’t go inside by himself as he usually did. I lifted him inside and said, “I’ll see you soon and you can communicate with me anytime.” Meaning telepathically. I tuned into him daily and worried about the noise of fireworks on the 4th but I picked up no distress or signal except he wanted to be with me. And now he’s gone.
Perhaps his destiny or karma was to get me to volunteer at the shelter and not be my house cat. If so, he succeeded and my work must continue, which I’ll do with love, in his memory. After being rescued from unspeakable horrors at the hoarder’s, he lived six, short weeks at the shelter. While not a home, he received much love and all the staff thought he was special. Dear Gray Boy and Angel Muse, fly free and know that many cats will be helped in your memory.
There are many, healthy cats ready, willing and able to be adopted like Gilbert. Please Pin and share his adoption graphic. To find out more of the deserving cat in need of homes in the NYC area, please visit New Rochelle Humane Society If you missed seeing highly adorable and adoptable Peanut our model for this month’s cat astrology