Editor’s Note: In July 2015, Pets Adviser rebranded as Petful, the site you see today. In honor of that occasion, we asked some of our regular readers to tell us what “being petful” means to them. Here’s one of their responses.
By Joan Parker
Subscriber since May 2013
After our elderly cat Nabisco, 19, and Snappy, 21, went to the Rainbow Bridge, we felt we could not and should not replace them. The pain was too great, and we needed to heal.
After 1 month and then 2, we were lonely, but we waited. There was no cat to greet us, no whiskers brushed our nose each morning and no wet nose touched the corner of my eye. I found no cat lying by the fire in the winter and no cat with teeth chattering looking from inside at the oh-so-near bird feeder in the window.
Finally, distraught and lonely after 6 months, we had to go to the Lowell Animal Shelter to adopt another one.
There she was. Too thin, listless, just lying there at 3 months old.
She had come from a family in a small apartment with 2 dogs, 3 young children and another older cat. She went home with us and proceeded to go under the couch in the office and stay there.
We put down food and water, left kitty litter and peered at her lying on the floor (no easy feat for a 72-year-old woman, describing all this to her 76-year-old husband who couldn’t get down there).
We went through 3 days of non-communication and trying to figure out a name.
Then, finally, she came a little closer. First she took a quick peek, and then finally she tentatively began to explore the room. It seemed safe: no dogs, no kids and all hers. The food was pretty good, too. We opened the office door, and her alter ego began to emerge.
A house, a screened porch, endless birds to watch, a veritable cat palace — she must be the queen!
Oh, and guess what? These people were trainable, she probably thought. One look and they brought not just 1 choice of food, but several, wet and dry. They would play with lovely feathered toys on command, they made more toys and they bought endless rolling balls, a mouse on a track, many tiny scented stuffed mice, catnip, fishing poles with fish to catch.
She discovered she was the smartest, most beautiful cat. They even designed Christmas cards featuring her. She could not only play the piano using the keys, but she also would jump inside and reach the hammers and try to play.
She sat next to me each time she played the piano and slept at the end of the bed although she also had a bed with a fake fur interior that I made and another climbing place with 3 levels of perches in the living room and another bed there.
Her new name was Spicy, and it suited. She added Spice to our life – a certain petfulness, if you will — and as I write this, she has been in my lap or next to me on the floor. We are so fortunate to have her with us.
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What does being petful mean to you? If you’re on Twitter, tweet your response to that question and be sure to use the hashtag #petful. We’ll pick 3 people to get one of our cute new tote bags!