Monday, July 30, 2012
Why I Adopted--Again
The little fellow in the picture has been christened Panther; indirectly he lives at my house because my son got a job this summer. You see, in order for me to take my son to work, I had to pass the window of the Humane Society, where a variety of kittens is always on display (and ever changing). Somehow, seeing the kittens each day--sometimes many times a day--must have worked on my subconscious, because by July I was telling my sons that we should give one of them a home.
By last Tuesday we were sitting with an adoption counselor, going over paperwork and viewing all of the kittens. By Thursday, we had returned to pay our donation and to sign our pledge to care for our animal, to not let him outside, not declaw him, not deprive him of veterinary care, etc.
And now we have, in essence, a baby in the house. Like my own children when they were babies, this kitten enjoys sleeping between my husband and me. He also enjoys waking me up at six in the morning by putting his nose in my eyeball, over and over, until I agree to stay awake and play with him. He enjoys jumping and climbing and meowing. He is VERY talkative. He purrs loudly at the least provocation. He wants to be with our other cats, but they don't yet respond to him, so he lives in his own little room, waiting. He's quite adorable.
According to the ASPCA, at least one third of all cats are acquired as strays. Panther and his five sisters were abandoned kittens; nothing is known about their mother. The ASPCA also notes that, while "5 to 7 million companion animals enter shelters nationwide every year . . . 3 to 4 million of them are euthanized."
My husband would be the first to tell you that we didn't need another cat. We had three already, along with a noisy beagle. Yet I couldn't help but feel that we had room for another one, and that one of those kittens in the window could be given a chance to roam around an entire house with some playmates.
As I write, Panther is attempting to make corrections by running across my keyboard. It's actually pretty annoying, but I can't get mad at his little face, which he well knows.
If you're considering adoption yourself, know that "owned cats and dogs generally live longer, healthier lives than strays." I don't suppose we need the ASPCA to tell us that, but it's still a good reminder that adoption is worthwhile.