One day, an acquaintance
of mine named Holly phoned me with a dilemma. She had adopted
a cat from me a few years earlier and knew that I could help
her. A lovely little cat had wandered into her garden a couple
of days earlier and seemed to be crying most of the time.
From what she could see, the cat seemed to be very weak.
I told her to take
the cat to the San Francisco Animal Care & Control and
have the cat examined. At that time we could better make a
decision as to what to do with the cat. Unfortunately, the
report was not good. The cat was quite old, had a very small
heart, and overall poor health. They did not recommend attempting
to save her. Holly and I agreed to let her go as there were just
too many health problems.
While out doing errands
the next afternoon, I decided to stop by the shelter, on the
off chance that the cat might still be alive. She was, and
I went in to see her. While walking to the cage, I kept whispering
"kitty, kitty, kitty", and to my complete astonishment
upon hearing my voice, the cat stood up, did a 360 degree
turn as if she knew me and gave forth a big "meow".
She seemed genuinely happy to see me and certainly did not
behave like a sick, weak cat.
Of course, we all know
what happened next. I couldn't walk away. I had to take her
home and give her a chance.
She was given a nice
warm bed in the kitchen and some food and water, and I settled
down to watch her enjoy her new surroundings. But unfortunately
it was not to be. She refused to eat or drink and became very
lethargic. I tried all kinds of goodies to coax her into eating,
but to no avail. It became necessary to force feed her for
many days. Sometimes I would get up in the middle of the night
to check on her, but nothing on her plate had been touched
and I began to think that I had made a bad decision by taking
But something kept
rattling around in my head -- why was she so energetic when
I saw her at the shelter and now seemed so weak. So I persisted.
I continued the force-feeding and gave her Vitamin B shots.
On the seventh day I was rewarded with the sight of her perking
up, walking to the food bowl and starting to eat. It was a
wonderful feeling to know that she was on the road to recovery.
Three weeks later she seemed to be almost completely well
except for her inability to jump on the bed easily, so I fixed
a basket for her on the kitchen floor and she continued to
Holly had developed
strong feelings for the cat, which we had named Bella, and
decided to adopt her, even though she already had one cat,
so we all felt confident that we had a happy ending.
But again, it was not
to be. The next thing I heard was that Bella was fighting
with Holly's other cat and winning the battles. So Holly took
Bella to her grandmother's house, and there we finally have
our happy ending. Bella now has an entire house all to herself
and an elderly friend to look after her. She has also set
aside a special area for herself and no one else and becomes
very distressed if anyone tries to intrude.
So, after many near
misses, Bella finally has her happy ending.