This is our first rescue cat, Magic (aka Chops, Chippy Chop, Magie-Pie). She's posing here with yours truly, Richard. In the photo on the right she's showing how much she loves licking sweat off my face after I've been for a jog. We found Magic at the Hawaiian Humane Society. We went in with the attitude that we wanted a cat that nobody else wanted. And Magic fit that bill. She was overweight, black (lots of archaic superstitions here in Hawaii), didn't get along with other cats, dogs or children, had a bad attitude and a permanently weeping right eye. But what clinched it, was when she reached out and put her paw on my wife's hand. First contact. And we've never looked back!
Upon Chops' insistence that we explore the great outdoors, I've recently started leash-walking her, with great success. Her favourite activity is to find some fresh dog wee and roll around in it. Hmmm.....
(July 12 2017 - Rest In Peace, My Dearest Magie-Pie. Magic was sadly taken from us all too soon. She chewed off a piece of my flip-flop/sandal and it got lodged in her gut. Although she had surgery to remove it, for some reason she wasn't able to recover. We brought her body home so everyone could see her, smell her, remember her and start some kind of healing and closure. I strongly recommend bringing your deceased home for a few hours so everyone can sniff them and understand what has happened. I'm not saying it will be easy. It will be extremely tearful, but it's arguably the best thing to do so that your other pets aren't left wondering what happened.)
This big ol' boy is Mugsy. Weighing in at 16 pounds and clocking in at 14 years of age he is an alpha through and through. And even though he and Magic don't get along too well, Mugs performs his alpha duties with aplomb, keeping an eye on his territory (from up high, as in these photos) as well as looking after Bear and Squirrel.
We rescued Mugs from the Kaneohe-based no-kill shelter, Joey's Feline Friends. He had arrived at the shelter with 3 air-gun bullets lodged in him (still there) and with a non-fuctioning right eye and permanent kink in his tail (run over?) As he's gotten older his kidneys have started to fail more and more.
As of next week (Feb 2017) he starts subcutaneous fluids to keep him hydrated. Mugsy Bugs is at his happiest when having fresh, organic catnip leaves rubbed under his chin or soaking up some rays on the balcony.
Bear (aka Beary-Bear, Uncle Bear, Snuffles, Snuffs) was also rescued from Joey's. With the gentlest soul of any creature on the planet, he melts the hearts of vets, surgeons, technicians, staff and anybody who meets him.
With the stoicism of a Seneca and the equanimity of a Socrates, Bear has faced a barrage of medicines and procedures over the years - and met them all with quiet fortitude. Maybe he doesn't worry as much as others because, without any ears to speak of, he doesn't hear what's being said around him.....?
I think Bear is at his happiest after his night-time medicine when he knows he's free and clear from me shoving stuff down his throat for another 12 hours. (Bear passed over the Rainbow Bridge during 2018. He is truly missed.)
This little darling is Squirrel (aka Squirly Whirl, Squirly, Squirl). Driving through Chinatown one day I saw a young girl on the side of the road with her, looking distressed. I stopped to assist and she told me that she'd just pulled this kitten off the middle of the road. I suggested I take her to the Humane Society. Weighing in at 14 ounces, Squirly was too small to be accepted, so I decided to foster her.
Bam! Foster failure!
And if I turn my back for a minute, I discover that she's typing emails to people that typically read something like ".......zzzzzzzzzzzxxxxxncbcn."
With the most endearing personality I have ever come across, Squirrel runs to the door to meet me, loves playing with the clutter on my desk, snuggles up with Mugs and Bear for naps, and wrestles with Magic until all hours of the night. Oh, and when I wake up, there she is - snoozing on my chest!
With the totally unexpected passing of our beloved Magie-Pie, the house had become eerily quiet. Squirrel, especially, became depressed and we decided that it would be unfair to ask her - as a 9 month old cat - to go through life living without a buddy and wrestling partner closer to her own age (Mugsy & Bear love Squirrel, but are way too old for crazy wrestling matches in the wee hours of the morning).
Shopping at Petco one day, we were saying hello to the kittens when 2-month-old Luna reached through the bars and attached herself to Diane. She wouldn't let go and made it clear that she had chosen us and wouldn't take "no" for an answer.
And, here I am, 2 weeks after she adopted us, happy to say that Luna and Squirrel have become great buddies and enjoy crazy wrestling and chasing sessions. Mugs and Bear? At their age, they take it all in their stride.
Abandoned on the streets on Kalihi, we took Forest in because he had nowhere else to go. And what a blessing he is! (I have a soft spot for the special-needs seniors). After following the Mieshelle Nagelschneider method on cat introductions, Forest is now - after 6 weeks of slow and careful, step-by-step introduction techniques, free-roaming around the house, enjoying feather-chasing and red-light-laser time!
Funnily enough, he doesn't really purr, but, instead, trills with delight when being scratched under the chin. And dribbles with happiness!
The other cats ignore him and, very occasionally, give him long blinks which, in the world of senior cat introductions, is an outstanding success!
This is hard to write....here goes: My friend passed away unexpectedly. Her family did not want her cat as they already had a full complement of pets. Seeing that Isis knew me, it felt logical and right that she join my family. And here she is!
I've known her for years because I drove my friend to the Hawaii Humane Society years ago where she chose Isis as a kitten. I also got into cat-sitting purely through looking after Isis while my friend was away. As of today, Jan 23 2019, we're following the Mieshelle Nagelschneider steps, from her wonderful book The Cat Whisperer, in order to introduce and integrate Isis into our household.
September 23 2020 - Moon Dreamer has joined our family! A special-needs senior kittie, Moonie is in kidney failure, has high blood pressure and a slight upper respiratory infection - my kind of cat! We'll be giving him azithromycin for the snot, amlodipine for the blood pressure and lactated ringer's for the kidneys. We love this guy and can't wait for him to meet the rest of our crew - but we'll take it very slow and steady to make sure it works! :)
Earlier on in 2020 Tiger Puss joined our family. Found wandering the streets of Mililani, emaciated and starving hungry, he was having a very difficult time because he is blind. We took him in immediately and every night I enjoy the privilege of having him snooze on my chest while we recline in a comfy chair and have our movie time. He gets 50ml of subcutaneous fluids each night just to keep the waterworks moving along. He is a real trouper! xxxooo
One of my cat-sitting clients very sadly passed away in January 2021 and no-one was around to take over guardianship of her orange senior boy with an unusually long tongue, John. So John joined our family and has never looked back. He loves to play chasings with Luna and gets on very well with everyone!
Our big black & white boy, Kazu, joined our family in January 2021. Raised as a kitten in 1 household, his owners dumped him at a shelter when he turned 14 where he plunged into depression and spent 2 years on a chair, barely moving but loving tickles and scritches from passers-by. When I heard of his plight I dropped a few choice expletives about his plight and Diane and I decided there and then to adopt him. He fit in to our eclectic household straight away and loves to be petted, brushed and to explore our high-up cat walks and shelves where he spends most of each day snoozing away or purring like a well-tuned V8!