Written by Ben Bisbee, WHS Adopter and Blogger
We only had room for two cats in our condo. Two. Two bedrooms. Two bathrooms. Two men. Two cats. It wasn’t only a request from our landlord, it also seemed just right. But then something tragic happened: one of our buddies and beloved cats, Sammy suddenly passed away. Sammy was this big, furry, cranky, handsome, lovable boy who stole our hearts and then broke our hearts. He had passed away at seven years from a presumed aneurysm, and we were devastated. His little kitty sister Miso didn’t know what to do with herself either.
A few weeks later we decided to visit the Washington Humane Society’s website—but just to look! We knew we wanted to get another cat, but honestly it was hard not to confuse new love with existing grief. But we also didn’t want Miso to be alone for very long. And so while perusing online we came upon an orange and white fluffball named Thomas. But were we ready? And what if Thomas didn’t like us? Or Miso? Or our home? And yes, admittedly we were over-thinking it. I think over-thinking is the sixth stage of grief they never really talk about.
And then a few days later we saw this little black and white puff of fur named Tucker on Facebook that was looking for a home. His Foster Mom was promoting his availability and the WHS Facebook page re-promoted it. He was little, cross-eyed and was cuter than we could almost handle. So what about a kitten? We got Sammy as a kitten. Maybe a kitten in the home would be nice for Miso. Maybe then we wouldn’t have to worry about how he’d “fit in?" So we scheduled a home visit with his foster mom Jessica.
Four months old and less than two pounds big, he was this massive personality, cross-eyed, crazy-white-whiskers and all. Our hearts just melted. He was the #2 in our 2x2x2x2 living situation. We were confidant he was the one. And his foster mom agreed, so we planned on heading over to the New York Avenue Adoption Center to fill out paperwork and start the process of making our family complete!
“But what about Thomas?” My husband asked me that afternoon, “I feel bad for him. I hope he gets adopted. I hope someone loves him and takes him home.” I smiled at my sweet husband and replied “I’m sure someone will honey, he’s seems wonderful, but we can only have two, remember?” And then, as luck would have it, it seemed like we didn’t have to worry about Thomas. That day when I looked online, he wasn’t listed as available for adoption. Oh thank God. He already found a home. That was a huge relief. Thomas found a home.
But life has a funny way about it, right? Upon our visit to the New York Avenue Adoption Center while Joe was working with the adoption counselor to fill out paperwork on Tucker, I got to sneak away to visit the facility’s Cat Room to play with the cats waiting for adoption. Ok, can I take a moment and say that anyone looking to visit the Cat Room should be warned: even the most cat-immune individual will be smitten by the Disney-like adorable cat atmosphere. They swarm you, purr, do some little cat dancing, and perform tricks… I’m fairly sure I even saw one juggling fire. Point is, they know you’re there to adopt, and they want in on the opportunity. So fair warning.
But there in the corner was the one large cat, quiet and unassuming, wearing a cone around his neck from an apparent eye injury. He has recently had a shave down, but he was orange and white and… wait. I stood there looking at him, petting him while he purred loudly… is this Thomas? No. That can’t be right. I’m probably wrong. There are about four all-white cats in this room, none of which I could tell apart even if you threatened me, so I’m sure I’m mistaken. But boy was he handsome and loving. I feel bad for him. But two cats. That’s life I suppose.
After Joe finished up the paperwork, he and the Counselor came into the Cat Room. “Look at this guy, Joe. Poor thing has an eye injury, but he’s so gentle and he’s purring like crazy.”
“Oh, that’s Thomas you have there,” the adoption counselor said. Wait. What? Joe’s eyes got saucer-wide. “Thomas is still here? We thought he got adopted. We didn’t see him online!”
We were told that he was taken down temporarily so he could heal from his self-inflicted eye injury, but as soon as he healed—and perhaps had his eye removal surgery—he’d be back online for adoption. Joe and I just stared at each other. Two cats. We can only have two cats. We said it out loud to each other and the counselor. “What are the statistics on cats with injuries or only one eye getting adopted?” Joe seemed anxious.
“Honey, I could call the landlord. We could ask about having
three cats.” Joe seemed torn. So after thanking the counselor for helping us fill
out the paperwork on little Tucker, we headed to the car. At which point I
quickly called our landlord who basically said, “As long as you never leave, you
can have as many cats as you can handle.” Three. Three cats. At which point, Joe called
the counselor and let her know we’d also be coming by tomorrow to fill out
paperwork on Thomas. So by the end of the day we were adopting not one, but two
little furballs into our and Miso's lives.
Now I could write an entire additional blog (or seven) about how both Thomas and Tucker have had multiple medical procedures in only a few weeks of having them. And how that the Washington Human Society—knowing about the need for these procedures well in advance—was kind enough to let us foster-to-adopt in order for their procedures to be handled professionally by their own medical team while allowing us to just love to the fullest while playing medical-soccer-dads, driving them to and fro for each individual procedure. But again, that’s another post for another day.
What else is there to say? Miso has gotten over the onslaught of two new brothers and is making room in her litter box and heart for Thomas and Tucker. Joe and I think of Sammy every day, but are so blessed to be providing loving homes for two amazing new additions who have completely stolen our hearts. And at the end of the day it’s because the Washington Human Society was there to not only guide us but provide us with the best care, compassion and service we’ve ever experienced. From the counselor to the vet, Tucker’s foster mom to the social media team, the administrative staff to the Techs, we have met some of the brightest and kindest people.
So thank you, Washington Humane Society. We are indebted to you as friends, supporters and followers. And Tucker, Thomas and Miso send a wealth of purrs and love as well. Thank you for helping us go from two to three in the best way possible.
“I am just so thrilled that even this extra special kitty found the most amazing home,” said Tucker’s foster mom Jessica. “It is a perfect example of how every pet can find their forever home, they just need someone to advocate for them, and cuddle with them while they search for the perfect parents. This is so exciting and exactly why I absolutely love fostering!”
The Cats go Marching Two by Two - Bring home a cat and a buddy for just one adoption fee. If you're interested in two cats, adopt one cat and WHS will waive the adoption fee for a playmate. www.washhumane.org/adopt
Ben is hoping to raise $230 before his birthday on September 23 to support our animals. Help him reach his goal here!
SUBSCRIBE for exclusive weekly tips and stories from the experts on the WHS team! Go to http://washhumane.typepad.com/ and enter your email (top right).
Please tell us your thoughts or questions on this blog.