Cat Sanctuary


An introduction to a new cat – from volunteer Pauline Chin


Amongst the new arrivals sitting in their cages, I come across the name, Fido. What, a dog’s name? A name search defines Fido as “a generic dog’s name” and “trustful or faithful”. More curiously still, the little fellow has no litter box in his cage. The floor is covered in towels because he is known to pee everywhere.


It seems he was abandoned by his owners and left to fend for himself outside the home where he had lived. Neighbours saw his predicament and started taking care of him. They eventually reached out to RAPS and now he’s here.


Fido appears to be a grey cat with a large bone structure who has lost weight and muscle mass.  He has striking green eyes.  His big, white feet have been stained yellow by urine.  Judging by his feet and bones, he must’ have been heavily built in his prime. His ear tattoo tells me he’s at least 14. Reaching through the cage to give him cheek scratches is enough to calm him down. His constant meows are demands for human attention.


I’ve been warned he can leak at any time. Sitting calls for extra protection. In this case, it’s a big towel and a garbage bag. He seems to truly appreciate the close contact. Understandable as not every human will want an incontinent cat on their lap. Five minutes later, he’s still a cuddle bug and dry. Five more minutes and he’s still happy and dry. I check his cage over the course of 2 hours and it’s dry and clean. Definitely an improvement. Fido also drinks a lot of water for a cat. Strangely, he has used his food bowl for a toilet.


Cats have all sorts of reasons for “inappropriate urination”.  Medical reasons aside, cats might pee elsewhere if the litter box is too small, too dirty, in an undesirable location, has undesirable litter, or if someone is blocking access.  Some felines do it more for fun, when they’re upset, insecure, or want to claim ownership. Sometimes it’s a quick spray, other times it’s a whole bladder’s worth. Around here, we’re used to cleaning up puddles and wall stains.


It’ll be interesting to see if Fido learns to fully control his bladder, if he dribbles as he travels, or if he is more selective where he goes. Eli, Licorice, Terry, Ollie, and Delilah are notorious for spraying territory. Through no fault of their own, late manxes Sweetpea and PeeWee were famous for leaving people with soggy feet.  Our star, Honeybear, also sprays and creates droppings as he makes his rounds, but everyone loves this bizarre boy.


Personally, I prefer to give Fido the name Pinot Gris. He is grey coloured, unique, a sociable guy, and a pun on pee.  If not for his incontinence, he would make a great cuddle buddy. Cheers to a new friend!

Blog by Pauline Chin
Photos by Pauline Chin, Brigid Coult, Jennine Kariya, Michele Wright

Note from Brigid: Fido is now out of his cage, and peeing enthusiastically everywhere to establish his territory! Though he can’t really be said to be helpful, his chatty personality and his desire for attention has quickly made him a favourite!