Paxton & Catalina are special kitties who’ve overcome so much. Paxton was in the feral kill room at a Southern California shelter when our rescue colleague, Cathy Hosford, pulled him out and put him in her feral enclosure.
She had a feeling about him, though, and kept her eyes open for signs that he wasn’t truly feral. When she noticed he’d always sit near the entrance of the enclosure as if he wanted to be closer to humans, she contacted Maine Coon Adoptions. We took him in, and our Kitty Cuddlers went to work and got him to trust humans again pretty quickly.
Catalina came from the same Southern California shelter, but to get her socialized the Kitty Cuddlers had to pull out their secret weapons — Pompon Sticks & baby food. (Kitty consultant Mikel Delgado with Feline Minds suggested the Pompon Stick.) We glued pompons to a stick and used that to pet Catalina so we could give her some love and still keep all our fingers. We also put baby food on the end of a rubber scraper and offered it to her so she’d start associating yummy things with humans.
Then adopters Dan and Beth met Paxton and Catalina and took them home where they are patiently putting the “finishing touches” on their socialization. Dan is a disabled vet who works from home, so the furry duo have a human around much of the time. We recently got a photo of the two snuggling together (and hiding out a bit) in the bookshelf on their special towel blanket made by one of our volunteers. (We sent it home with the kitties to give them something comfortingly familiar with their scent on it.) Dan and Beth’s kindness and patience are paying off. Paxton is now Dan’s buddy, but Catalina is coming around more slowly. She has just started sleeping out in the open during the day, but she seems to feel a little safer every day. Dan and Beth recently wrote to say, “We are just in love with these kitties. I’m so glad we found you.”
Chad & Valentino may look like brothers, but they’re not. Once they met, though, they decided they were born to make mischief together. Valentino came from the streets in one of the small towns in the Central Valley. Chad came from a veterinarian in Lake County who’s out there trying to do what she can to rescue neglected or abused cats. Both came down with ringworm, so they spent their first 6 weeks with us in separate quarantine quarters. They met for the first time after they recovered from ringworm and went into foster care together.
Once these two troublemakers teamed up, it was off to the races. They get away with it all because they are extremely affectionate. Valentino likes to snuggle, head butt, put his face right up against yours and rub your cheek with his nose. Chad is an award winning purr-er. We have hard evidence that they’ve wrapped adopter Alison around their little kitty paws. She recently sent us a photo of Valentino with a heart drawn around his face. She also sent us a photo of the two doing a monumental crash on the sofa after playing hard. It reminded us of that old Gary Larson cartoon about the boneless chicken ranch.
(Here are V & C imitating boneless chickens, Chad trying to figure out what trouble he can get into with a laptop and Valentino looking a bit mischievous, notwithstanding the heart around his face.)