First of all, bear with me while I get to it:
For quite a while now, I had been thinking of getting a new cat. Have moved from place to place throughout the years yet it never seemed like the ‘right’ time. At first I blamed it on the location: No cats allowed, place too small, too big…not big enough! No real logic, I was simply putting it off. Eventually coming to the conclusion that I had yet to find the ‘right’ cat.
I use to have one long ago. From the time he was a kitten until after one of my many moves. You see my old dear tabby took a starting role in a horrible clawing incident. He gave up on his $15 scratching post and vetoed to make some coats and most of my shoes into his new scratching toys. As such he found itself getting a one way ticket to a far better place… namely my sister’ house in the suburbs. First of all she has a bigger house and secondly she has more shoes than I do. Either way, he was out the picture and my new wardrobe would be safe from any future maulings.
However bad and costly that accident may have been, I still had my heart set on getting a pet. Another pet to be exact, for you see. I am currently babysitting a rat. Yes a ‘rat.’ Name is Cordelia and she is an escapee from a research lab. Yes, let the truth be known, she was a victim of a scientific concentration camp were experiments were performed in the name of science but has since then been liberated. The only one of her group thanks to an insider –whose name shall go unmentioned— who could not see harm come to this cute “hooded-rat” (also known as the Cadillac of rats). Otherwise she would have been terminated at the study’s end.
I know, I know what some of you may say: ‘Eeewww, but Mauricio, it is a rat! Have you seen the monstrosities that run around in the subway tracks in downtown Toronto?” Does this look like
the face of a killer?
So what if there are some ‘mild’ rumours about rats and the black plague of 1347 and six other pandemics in the next four centuries including the great plague of Vienna in 1679? So what if it wiped out an estimated 36 million people? I say let bygones be bygones For example, I have friends that owe me money, but you don’t see me getting all nervous about it and marking their doors with black paint. Besides the true culprits were the fleas some rats just happen to carry at the time.
The silly rodents are in fact pretty clean. For example, when I brought Cordelia home, in an attempt to make her feel welcome I petted her for a bit. You know, the human way of saying ‘Hi’ to an animal whose IQ is vast inferior to mine. What did the bugger do?
The moment she thought I wasn’t looking the fuzz ball started desperately licking and cleaning itself. As if saying, “Hey, I don’t know where you have been buddy and I keep hearing about this plague thing and I am not going to take any chances with you.’
I was a little insulted to say the least. Don’t believe me? Check what the Toronto Humane Society says about how clean they can be: http://www.torontohumanesociety.com/caringforPet/ratsmice.html
Once again, I have friends with questionable hygiene habits, but never have I thought would of getting the bubonic plague off them. Besides now that I have had my own hygienic practices questioned by a rodent, well, I don’t feel too concerned of the cute little fuzz ball anymore.
Okay, so finally… this brings us back to how I lost my one eyed cat. Well, a few days ago one of my best friends emails me out of the blue and says:
‘You want a cat? I have two. A playful three-month-old brother and sister, I should mention, due to an infection that although now treated, left the boy with only one eye. But you have never met a friendlier cat, I promise you.”
A five-minute taxi ride and I was there. I took a long look at this one eyed cat; now officially named Siegfried and after thanking my friend I was on my way home with my new pet. Oh, and what about depth perception? Not a problem.
This cat was one cool kat. Friendly, playful, full of life, he was a nice gray and white coat, a picture perfect cat. That is of course until he met Cordelia, I would say the meeting, or rather staring contest lasted about 1.3 seconds before Cordy ran for dear life into the house I had made in her cage out of used Vector cereal boxes. I do not know if you have ever seen a rodent petrified with fear. It was not a pretty sight. For the next 24 hours, she would not sleep, eat, drink, or move for that matter. The cat you ask? He was at Club Med for kittens. Had you walked into my place you would have thought that Siegfried had lived there for years. He slept in the same bed, was quiet, made no messes, was playful and could not have cared less for any of my shoes and ironically payed little if no attention to Cordy.
I will admit that I had made some research before hand and knew there was a very high possibility that Cordy and Sieg would not get along, but Toronto has already enough homeless animals and I was trying to do my part.
But sadly after talking to a few friends, the consensus was simply that I could not have one great pet at the expense of the misery of another. It was really sad. But I had to act fast, Cordy would not eat and had noticeably lost some weight. So in the long – I mean, short – run, my Siegfried only lasted a day and a half with me before my friend, drove over at 1:00am last week to pick him up. It was unfortunate. At least I am sure my friend will find a great home for him and someone out there is going to be very lucky cat owner.
Cordy is back to her inquisitive healthy “I am the rat of the castle,” mode and I am happy for her but it was heartbreaking when I opened my refrigerator this morning and noticed a half-eaten can of ‘Fancy Feast.’ I threw it away.
If you are interested in getting a pet, whether is a cat, dog or even a rat – for real, they are like little dogs…Just check this link here for the Toronto Humane Society: