We have a new heartthrob at the RAPS Cat Sanctuary – a big chunky tabby boy who takes “Love Me Tender” very seriously as his motto!
Elvis came to us from Bella Bella, in the Central Coast region of BC – he was discovered on the street, possibly having been hit by a car. Luckily, the local rescue didn’t dismiss him as un-helpable, and he was shipped to Port Hardy for treatment. They in turn decided that he needed more than they could do, and he was relayed down-island by their staff and ours, and came into our care. He needed some TLC, being pretty stressed from his journey, but once he realised he was in a safe place he calmed down a lot.
The hospital found he had several wounds from fighting – not surprising because he was an unneutered male. Following surgery (and a fair bit of dental work) he was moved to the Sanctuary. They think he’s between 3 and 4 years old. He has one slightly droopy eye and one slightly droopy ear that leave you with the impression that he’s looking sideways and saying, “Seriously…?”
Now that Elvis is fully recovered, we can see that he’s a big sturdy boy who has calmly taken the line of least resistance and settled down in his new surroundings. He was not happy with cage-living at the Adoption Centre, and anything involving a carrier means a battle, and bloodshed. He was wary of us at first, but quickly discovered that humans came with pettings and tasty treats. In good weather, he can be found wandering in the back courtyard, but he has discovered that his new Richmond home is cosy-warm in the winter and he has happily taken to snoozing on the Double-Wide couch – and when that’s too crowded with other cats, he will drape himself anywhere nearby.
Some tomcats find it hard to break the habits of being dominating and aggressive even when neutered, but with testosterone out of the picture, Elvis is getting on well with the other cats, and not creating any problems. Last week I was visiting with the Alberta cats in Pen 3, and getting to know Puddin’ (mentioned last week as Strike’s former housemate); Puddin’ has decided that he likes these guys, and has largely moved in with them.
Elvis came to visit while I was there, and there was a lot of nose-bumping and comfortable socializing until he decided that he wanted to come up on my lap. Before I knew where I was, he had his paws up and round my neck, and I was getting the sort of hug I used to get from our late beloved Emery! With Emery there was always the edge of desperation about his hugs; Elvis does hugs (and kisses) with total assurance that this is what you want as well! He adores attention, and his rumble of pleasure can be felt.
Right now, the Adoption Centre is very much taken over by the younger generation! – late-season kittens are melting everyone’s hearts, and until they’re adopted, the older cats need to live in the Sanctuary where they have room, rather than in the confined cage-space of the Adoption Centre. But some of our newer ones are certainly adoptable, and we hope that cats like Elvis will eventually have a chance at finding a new home of their own. Till then “I Can’t Help Falling In Love With Him”
Featured Image: Karen Nicholson