Any regular volunteer at the Sanctuary knows how much of our work revolves around bathroom habits. From the scooping of many litter-boxes (more than 35 in the back area alone) and dealing with sweeping up after enthusiastic litter-kickers, as well as changing and scrubbing boxes – there’s a lot of poo and pee in our lives.
And that doesn’t account for dealing with the cats who choose not to use litter-boxes. In some cases, it’s territorial (yes, Jasper, I mean you!), in other cases it’s a physical problem (as with our Manx Syndrome cats) – but for many, it’s because they just like to; it’s a habit, and one they’ve been unable to break.
Six-year-old Sully was surrendered for pooping outside the box. When he came in, he was actually named Ollie, but we already had an Ollie so his name was changed. We should have known – our resident Ollie (beautiful boy that he is) has no time for litter-boxes either. It was thought that Sully might be mis-aiming because of children-caused stress at home – we have had cats come in labelled as pee-ers, and find that they’re just fine with us. But it didn’t matter where Sully was – the box was not getting used.
Apart from his bathroom habits, he’s a sweet boy. He’s friendly and outgoing, and he seems to get on well with other cats. He can be found all over the Front Courtyard – he’s not yet established his own niche area – and he is one of the cats that seems to enjoy visitors, rather than being spooked by them. He reminds me of a friend with red hair and very pale skin who complains that her eyes vanish until she’s put mascara on; Sully’s eyes are a little squinty, especially in the sunshine, but it doesn’t stop him enjoying his feline sun-worshipping.
Some of our new cats take a while to adjust to life at the Sanctuary. Sully is pretty relaxed and feels quite at home.
Blog by Brigid Coult
Photos by Lisa Brill-Friesen, Brigid Coult & Karen Nicholson