Usually the Sanctuary cats come in to us in ones and twos – whether as trapped ferals or as owner-surrenders. The last time we had a significant group was back in the spring of 2012 when the ten Heinz cats came to us – all of them older cats from a gentleman who had gone into hospice care. All those cats have passed over in the intervening years, with the exception of Bellestar, who was always the most fragile, but who is still hanging in there!
We’ve recently taken in another group from an owner going into care. Again, they’re mostly older cats, and therefore don’t have great adoption prospects, but it was felt it was better to bring them into the Sanctuary together and only move them to 5 Road if space opens up. This is a delightful bunch of cats. They are (mostly) sociable and enjoy interacting with humans; some are a little shy and many needed dental and grooming attention. Today’s blog will introduce them, and I hope as we get to know them better that we may have some individual profiles.
PawPaw immediately decided that we were a Good Thing – especially when he was offered chicken! He was a little heartache for some of us – he looks so like (semi) feral Rusty in Pen 4, who died a few months back.
Tana is probably one of the oldest of the cats; she was very matted and didn’t allow more than a patchy shave-job. This little girl undoubtedly needs more dental care to feel comfortable.
There are two short-haired black cats in the group, similar in general body-shape (i.e. tubby), but very different in personality. Cookie has a shorter tail and is shy but quite friendly; Carla, with white whiskers, is not a happy camper and has decided that attack is the best defence. She wanders round grumbling to herself when she can’t find another cat to growl at; she’s taken to sitting at the gate and swatting at curious cats peeking in. I think it was Fred’s fur in her claws last. We suspect it’s mostly because she feels unsettled.
Simba is the most friendly of the bunch and is eager to leap into a visitor’s lap. He lost an eye to a sharp twig while on a leashed walk with a former owner, and apparently has experienced some abuse, but you wouldn’t know it to meet him. However, he’s a cat that likes to be outside, and pees when he can’t get out, so the Sanctuary may be the best place for him, however adoptable he is in other ways.
Sophia is another cat that likely has dental problems, and we’ll need to have that seen to before anything else. She’s quite shy – she reminds me in both personality and appearance of Samantha, and also of May, in Pen 5.
The tortie in the group is named Mrs Trotzki, for a friend of the owner – she’s a delightful little girl, chatty and sociable, but typically tortie, is quick to establish her space.
Blue (not sure where he got that name) is a big black and white boy who doesn’t really like the other cats very much – he’s the cat who walks by himself, unless there’s a human around to fuss him.
The long-haired black boy in the group actually doesn’t have long hair right now – he was very matted and needed a pretty drastic lion cut. We can remember both poor Matt and Henrik who had the same problem in previous summers and looked very sheepish for a while – they can reassure Doodlebug that it really does grow out, and that he will look handsome again!
The last two are something of a bonded pair, and though adoptable, would really need to go together. Both are very friendly with people, and love attention. Pretty Rebecca is tabby; her boyfriend Laredo is much larger, and obviously enjoys posing.
As with all the closed pens at the back, we ask that Sunday visitors don’t just go in, but request entry with a tour guide or a staff member. Not only is it easy for a cat to slip in or out if we’re not careful, but we always need to remind visitors that not all cats care for a lot of human attention, and many don’t like being picked up. However, this group does love attention, and many are potentially adoptable, even if they are older, so we’re glad to make visits possible.
Welcome to the Sanctuary, guys!
Pictures by Brigid Coult & Michele Wright