Tikki came to us late last summer
|Tikki – MW|
Tikki is one of many of our older cats who have arrived at the Sanctuary when their owner’s health has necessitated a move to senior care. There are very few facilities that will allow an old person to take the cat they love with them, and unless the cat is young and adoptable, at the Shelter it is competing with cute kittens for potential adopters.
|Where did they go? – LBF|
Our Tikki is at least 12 years old – he might well be older – and he certainly qualifies as a senior, himself. Initially he could have been taken to the Moore House, but it was decided that he should stay in the Double-Wide, and that was a decision with both pluses and minuses. On the negative side, it transpired that he didn’t like other cats much – and when there are a series of “this is my turf” cats like Jasper and Cinnamon Bun Lincoln, who pee anywhere they think they can claim, I don’t blame Tikki for being a bit disgruntled. But on the plus side, his cage was near the entrance, so there were many humans who could drop in and spend a little time with him.
|Cuddles with Ken – temporary comfort – LBF|
We’re told that Tikki is a Norwegian Forest cat. There may well be some “weegie” in him, but he’s not much more than standard size, and he doesn’t have the solid appearance of our former “weegie” Fred. He has the long fur – now rather bedraggled – and the fairly big paws, but I think there’s a good bit of regular tabby in him.
|First explorations – KN|
The thing that has stood out most for me about Tikki is that he is one of the grievers. Some cats are not happy about coming here, but they settle and adapt. For months, Tikki exuded sadness – “my person is gone – I’m all alone”. He allowed petting, he could occasionally be coaxed into eating, but mostly he was a sad lump in his cage. When it was finally opened, he declined to leave; this was his space, and other cats were not welcome. Many of us spent time with him; grooming him as much as he would allow (necessary, but not his favourite thing), petting him, encouraging him onto a lap, or into a cuddle. And then he would retreat back to his corner and look out with sad eyes.
|“Baby, it’s cold outside” – KN|
In the past couple of months there’s been a shift towards acceptance; he was found outside his cage more often, he’s negotiated the door into the laundry room and explored a bit there, and then he made his way to the door and down the stairs into the breezeway. Followed by Karen and her camera, he poked around a bit, investigated a few (smelly) corners and then decided that it was too cold for him, and returned to familiar territory.
|a better appetite now… – BC|
Not long after that first outing the decision was made that he would probably be better off in the Moore House with the other oldies. A short cage-stay there, to assimilate the changes in his surroundings, and it became obvious that this was a better space for him – warmer, less busy, and with fewer cats swaggering around in his space.
|and a happier boy… BC|
There are sometimes Kitty Comforters visiting in there, but life is quieter – except for the times he actually gets excited about playing
Once again, Tikki is exploring – he’s ventured out on the deck, as well as investigating the main room. He welcomes visitors, hovering hopefully by the door, but usually returning to the safety of “his” open cage. It’s encouraging to see him pushing his boundaries, more readily tolerating other cats around him, and learning that there really is love and a new home for him with us.