Eight Days and Nine Nights of Sunshine

Over the past couple of weeks, I’ve been feeling ready to invite a new kitty into my life, which has caused me to reflect on an adoption attempt I made last spring.

By June of 2020, Bobcat had gained weight and became diabetic since his best friend Lexington passed in December of 2019. He was still affectionate and attentive towards me, yet seemed so sad.  I came to the conclusion that a new friend; specifically a girlfriend, would be good medicine for Bobcat.

I began my search spending several weeks of reviewing cat bios on Petfinder, finding only two prospectives.  After no response to my inquiries from the shelters, I moved on. Another cat of interest was at a shelter run by just one woman who did call me back, sounding out of breath saying that she had too much going on, but she would call me back at 7:00 that evening.  She never did.  Trying to find a girlfriend for Bobcat was becoming as arduous as online dating.

After a two-week break I got back on rescue websites to give it another shot.  Within an hour I found two prospective girlfriends for Bobcat and got a call back from the director of the rescue group. The two cats in question had already been adopted, but she invited me to a PetSmart adoption event happening that weekend.

Me: Bobcat, I’m off to PetSmart to find you a girlfriend! Bobcat: A what?…

I arrived at the PetSmart adoption center on Saturday morning and immediately noticed a pretty two-year-old girl named Sunshine.  Her bio stated that she was sweet and sociable. Perfect.  Sunshine bonded with me instantly, and I adopted her on the spot.

Sunshine, photo courtesy of Susan Brown Matsumoto Photography

On the drive home I began to feel apprehensive.  While Sunshine seemed like a good fit for Bobcat, She did not tug at my heartstrings.  I suddenly felt I’d made a hasty decision, made in the moment out of tiring of the selection process, and just wanting Bobcat to have a friend.  In the past, I always knew upon meeting my prospective new cat—sometimes just by looking at the photo that he or she was the one.  Yet, I’d “sleep on it” before making my final decision to adopt.  If I woke-up the day after meeting the potential adoptee with the same excitement I had upon our meeting, I scheduled another visit.  If the same warm-fuzzy feelings filled my heart during the second visit, I’d adopt. Unbeknownst to me at the time, that apprehension was my intuition giving me a warning, just the same as the strong “knowing” I’ve had when the right cat came along.

Sunshine was sweet and sociable and was also pure alpha—domineering, aggressive and possessive of me. In my attempts to bring the cats into each other’s space I broke up two catfights, one that landed me in urgent care with serious cat scratches and another with Bobcat at the vet for a scratched eyelid.  Bobcat became withdrawn and spent lots of time hiding.

Is she gone yet?

The circumstance had become unhealthy and very stressful for everyone involved, so I relinquished Sunshine to the shelter.  She was a wonderful cat, but not for us.  Once she was gone, Bobcat and I rekindled our love and life was peaceful again.

Ahhh, I’m in the clear, she’s outta here!

In retrospect, I realized that Bobcat just needed more time to grieve, not a stranger invading our space and our one-on-one time together.

I felt horrible having to return Sunshine and guilty that I added more stress to her life.  I wished I’d been more discerning, but I couldn’t go back and undo the situation.  I found solace when I heard that she was adopted a couple of weeks later, and was reminded to always listen to my internal insight.

Let’s see who my intuition will lead me to this time around…stay tuned!

About CatLadyintheCanyon

Author, passion for animals, Mother Nature, and music.
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13 Responses to Eight Days and Nine Nights of Sunshine

  1. thunderb61 says:

    Follow your heart – an apt description of your next life’s journey Pam. I’m happy Sunshine was adopted by another family and it worked out for her. We miss Bobcat but are looking forward to new kitties in your future. Love, Mom

  2. Suzanne O'Rourke says:

    Love that you are opening your heart to the next lucky feline will be in kitty heaven as part of your family. Can’t wait for the introduction Pamela. Hope you are thriving. Much love,
    Suzanne & John

  3. catladymac says:

    Bobcat will be there to guide you this time

  4. Mollie Hunt says:

    This story is much like my own experience after two of my elderly cats passes, leaving my sweet girl Little alone. She had always liked the company of others, so I foresaw no problems with adopting a new cat. I was wrong! Now in her senior years, Little was no longer interested in new felines disrupting her space. On top of that, or maybe because of it, the new cat Oscar, though sweet to me, bullied her, sending her to the vet with scratches. I tried everything I could think of, including consulting a behaviorist. I finally went with separating the two completely, one to be the upstairs cat and one, the downstairs cat. But when Oscar pawed open the door and immediately attacked Little, scratching deep across her eye, we’d all had enough. Taking him back to the shelter was one of the hardest things I’ve had to do, but it was the right thing. I had an obligation to Little, made long before Oscar came on the scene. Thankfully, like Sunshine, he got adopted by someone else soon after.

    • Mollie–wow, what a similar situation. You gave it your all. I feel for you. You absolutely did the right thing. I cried all the way back to the boarding facility where I had to return Sunshine because the shelter was at full capacity (and it was my birthday…not so happy). She was so sweet to me and I’d become attached, But like with Oscar, when Sunshine attacked Bobcat when she forced her way out of her space and got Bobcat’s eyelid, I knew that it was enough. Bobcat was my true love and his health and well being was priority. I learned such a big lesson. I’m happy to hear that Oscar was adopted soon after his return. Thank you for sharing your story!

  5. Tanya says:

    Good story. Thank you for sharing.

  6. Tanya says:

    Great story. Thanks for sharing.

  7. Thank you for sharing your experience. It sounds like you did the right thing. I look forward to meeting whatever kitty Bobcat guides you to!

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