I know. I KNOW. I swore never, ever again. And yet, here we are. With another damn cat…not even A YEAR since I took in the last one, swearing that he was ABSOLUTELY, POSITIVELY the last new animal to cross the threshold.
We had a fully functioning baseline of animals to begin with…
Rosie, the three legged dog (inside/outside):
Pluto and Kendall:
Outside, the hubby’s funky old yard cat, Baby:
For a few years, we had a ferret as well…but Janie went to ferret heaven after only 5 years due to thyroid issues.
We rocked on with our well established eco-system. Everyone was happy. Everyone knew their place…I was reasonable high in the pecking order, so I was content.
Then, one fateful day in May of 2009, this happened:
We passed almost two whole years without any animal additions. Then the kiddo got old enough to date…and along came a boy that wanted to show her the depths of his affection by bringing her this:
I freaking DARE you to tell me you could have resisted him. Even though I KNEW he would not stay a little ole fur-ball forever, that he would one day be big enough to counter-surf and set off the seat-belt alarm in the car…even though I knew the reputation of Golden Retriever puppies for chewing on everything in sight…one look into those liquid, big brown eyes and I was completely owned by that dog. We welcomed Simba into our fold as an indoor/outdoor dog like Rosie. I will say…he surprised me very much with the chewing thing…he never put tooth to anything that wasn’t food or one of his allowed toys. He is, however a retriever breed. Which means he likes to retrieve things. All. The. Time.
Pictured here: six of the eleventy-dozen tennis balls Simba has. We had to put them on the mantel to keep him from trying to retrieve all six simultaneously. (He could get two into his mouth, but would lose one when he’d try to go for three. He was obsessive/compulsive about trying) Simba came to us very young, and was half-raised by cats. He’s never really embraced the concept that he can’t do everything that the cats can do…and has no real concept of how much bigger than a cat he is.
So okay…we now stand at:
Indoor/outdoor dogs: 2 (or 1 and 3/4)
Indoor cats: 3
Outdoor cats: 1
That’s reasonable. I mean, I know it’s more than most people would really want…but we weren’t in any danger of an animal planet police raid or a staged intervention or anything. I declared that we were at capacity. I even managed to hold strong through several attempts by the child to breach my defenses:
This is a cat. His name is definitely not Oscar. He was looking for a home, but it was not mine. My daughter found him starving outside of the 32degree yogurt place and because I am a great, big, huge SUCKER with absolutely NO backup from my husband, not-Oscar was brought home to stay in the kiddo’s bathroom while I frantically tried to find him a permanent home. He was INCREDIBLY sweet and very purr-y. I could feel myself caving when…only a couple of hours into the second day, my friend Annette found not-Oscar a home. A guy she worked with had a liking for yellow tabbies. His original yellow tabby, Puddin’, had been around about 8 years and apparently weighed 15 pounds…his second yellow tabby had actually just started hanging around his house and coming in through his cat door on his own…for several days, he and his wife thought Puddin had just developed the ability to open the space/time continuum and appear in two places almost simultaneously. When they realized the fact that it was just a Puddin doppelganger, they took to calling him Puddin 2. This couple had no children and spoiled their yellow tabbies rotten. Not-Oscar was crated and taken by these kindly people…off to begin his new life as Puddin 3.
I breathed a huge sigh of relief as I realized what a bullet I had dodged. I set the kid down and told her IN NO UNCERTAIN TERMS that we weren’t taking in any more animals…To be continued…