First, I'm a little behind on this Ellen DeGeneres (sp?) stuff. So she gave an adopted dog to someone else and got all pissed when the animal shelter repoed the mutt.
Take it from this cat-crazy Druid who volunteers at the local animal shelter: Dog pounds have become very picky about who they allow to adopt animals because:
1. Some people in the past have adopted animals and then sold them to nasty research mills where the poor pooches were tortured with any manner of stuff that touches humans in any way.
2. Some people adopt animals for slaughter in pentagrams. That's the work of people who believe in Satan, which the last time I looked he's in the Christian Bible, not the poems of Taliesin.
So, while it breaks my heart sometimes to see my foster kittens grow into young adulthood in cages at the pound, I know that when they do go out, they're going to safe homes. And they are never euthanized, because the shelter I work for doesn't kill sweet-tempered pets.
(Two Mormon missionaries are working the next block. I just saw them a minute ago. So if this post stops in mid-sentence, you'll know I'm spending the rest of the afternoon testifying to the power of the Goddess to those who need to hear it the most.)
On to today's fabulous tail! Errr.... tale!
THE ADVENTURE OF BETA CAT
I have two cats, Alpha and Beta. Both are rescues. We got Alpha from the shelter because she was older and no one wanted her. Beta chose to live with us after toughing it out in the wild for about six months. In that time she had a litter of kittens that had to be rounded up. The Spare tamed Beta, and we've had her five years. (No more kittens from Beta! We saw to that first thing.)
Some cats just consider themselves boarders. They demand, you give, they go outside until they have more demands. This is more or less Beta.
One evening last week I realized that Beta hadn't made any demands for a day or two. I wasn't sure how long it had been since I had seen her lounging on top of Decibel the Parrot's cage.
Another day went by. Then we got an overnight cold rainstorm that would certainly have brought Beta home under every normal circumstance. It was official. Beta was gone.
I got to thinking about the fox I've seen in the neighborhood. Knowing that Beta's a night owl (actually she's a cat), I thought probably she'd run afoul of the fox.
When I told my daughters this, The Heir pretty much accepted it. But The Spare would have none of it. She wanted to hang up posters and ask around. It was the weekend, and I promised to call the local shelters on Monday to see if they had picked her up. As you can see from the picture, she's a strikingly individual cat in appearance.
Five days and nights (at least) passed, but The Spare never gave up hope.
Last Sunday, just after I returned from the Faerie Con, I was sitting in the living room with The Heir. We heard what sounded like a meow at the front door. Even then I said, "Oh, it's probably just the kids across the street."
We went to the door, and there stood Beta, skittish and visibly thinner. She ran to the food trough and ate and drank like anyone would if they'd been five days without water and vittles. Then she rubbed us (first show of gratitude ever from her). She was hoarse.
We don't have much car traffic around here, but the houses are pretty close together. My guess is that Beta snuck into someone's garage and then got trapped in there until the weekend.
I figure she's down to about seven lives left now.
Anyway, The Spare, eternal optimist like her dad, is vindicated. Beta has returned.
Alpha's pissed as hell. She loved being Only Cat.