Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Rescuerama: A Mystery in Progress – Part 2

After much discussion, my husband and I agreed to keep the cat overnight and take her to a vet the next morning to be scanned. We gave her water, which she eagerly lapped up. Our food options were less successful.

We tried treats (i.e., food we had on hand) that our own cats had loved—yogurt, cheese, eggs, halibut. Finally, the obvious came to my husband: tuna. The cat tried it and gave me a look that could only be interpreted as “You figured it out! I’m so very grateful.” In contrast, had our old Burmese been in the same situation, she would have shot me a look that meant “Now how bloody hard was that, hmm? Pathetic human…”

My husband set up a litterbox with sand, which we had in preparation for making luminaria for the holidays. The cat used it and we were grateful. It looked as if we’d all make it through the one night together.

I’m not sure how to describe the little lost cat (whom we shall call Djuna from now on for the sake of practicality). She’s unlike any other cats I’ve known. She immediately acted comfortable in our home. Or perhaps she is simply self-assured regardless of location and situation. She is exceedingly polite; that is, she seems to wait for permission to do anything she wants—whether it’s sitting in my lap or wandering into another room. She doesn’t meow. Her communication style is completely nonverbal. Djuna either stares at us until we comprehend her wishes or she touches us with a paw. She’s a startling amalgamation of our previous animal companions: tiny with a plush coat like our Tortie, intelligent like our Burmese (sans the ’tude), calm like our special-needs cat and, like our pooch, not interested in having her photograph taken. She follows us everywhere, cleans herself every few moments, and delights in bellyrubs and cuddling. We started wondering who sent her to us, what she was trying to tell us, whether the souls of our other animals were, indeed, all crammed together inside her… But then she took the trip to the vet in stride and we knew she was her own, singular self since none of our other creatures enjoyed traveling.

 A vet tech scanned Djuna and found—EUREKA!—a microchip. We waited in a small room of the Victorian-house-turned-animal-clinic for news of the cat’s guardian. As much as we loved having a cat in our lives again, we were relieved that soon she would be in the arms of the person who no doubt missed her terribly.

The vet tech returned to our room with mixed news. The phone number listed with the microchip was defunct, but we could try the address listed. The cat had been adopted from the Paris Animal Welfare Society (P.A.W.S.), which said it would take Djuna back and re-adopt her.

Our hopes weren’t dashed. It was too early to surrender Djuna to P.A.W.S. First, we would visit the address listed on the microchip.

It was a duplex not far from our neighborhood—IF you were travelling by car. But a tiny cat? We shuddered to imagine how many busy streets she had crossed to find her way to our bushes. We wondered how direct her path had been and who had noticed her along the way.

No one was home at the duplex. So I left a note, explaining that 1913 __________ Road was the address given to P.A.W.S., that we had no current phone number or name, yada yada yada.

Late that afternoon, I received a call I wasn’t prepared for.

to be continued…

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