I try to keep this blog focused on the positive aspects of the Sanctuary, and on the cats that have made new lives for themselves under our care.
But some of them have such enormous personalities that there is an equally enormous sense of loss when they leave us. Many volunteers reading this will know quite a lot about the back-stories of Lincoln and Tugboat, who passed recently – so this blog is mainly for our occasional visitors, or those who know the cats only through the blog.
Lincoln was known as Cinnamon Bun Lincoln for his curly tail – just one of those mutations that we see from time to time – and it made him instantly visible to visitors who would look for the cat with the cinnamon-bun tail. He has been with us for more than 16 years, and was adult when arrived – so he qualified as a SuperSenior. (15 years for a cat is equivalent to around 75 in a human).
Claire Fossey introduced him early in the life of the NekoBlog (check the link for the full story). The pelvic injury that brought him to us never slowed him down much, though it did cause his run to be more of a rabbit hop. But it never stopped him from going anywhere he wanted.
Often, that was to be in someone’s lap; Lincoln had many human friends, and really loved having quiet down-time with them on the DoubleWide couch. He was also well known for expressing his feelings when other cats interrupted his time, or when someone else got to the lap first – to be peed on by Lincoln became a marker of how favoured you were.
He wasn’t aggressive with other cats, but he wasn’t shy about standing up for himself either – he could scrap with Jasper or Gizmo if he felt it necessary, but he would also allow Dusty to cuddle with him in Waldie’s Hut. Most of the attachment there was on Dusty’s side – Lincoln was tolerant of her presence, but she did all the running! Poor Dusty has lost her third boyfriend – she bonded with Salty, and when he was gone, with Ridley. Though she allows herself to be petted, her first inclination with humans is to hiss, and she really needs cat companionship.
In his last months Lincoln was battling recurring infections and spent most of his time in the warmth of the Tea-Room, sharing the radiator’s heat with Sara Lee, and having visits with his human friends.
Tugboat came to us in 2010, losing his family to his bad bathroom habits! When a particular “accident” resulted in damage to precious documents, they reluctantly surrendered him, but remained in touch with his special Sanctuary friend, Debbie.
Tugboat instantly endeared himself to all the staff and volunteers. Always a gentleman, he would beg so sweetly for attention that it was impossible not to stop and make a fuss of him. We wondered if his peeing habit might be mitigated by a home where he was the only cat – but it never happened; many volunteers already have more than one cat, and those who don’t are often in a situation where they can’t have a cat at all. So Tuggy remained with at the Sanctuary.
He inherited the mantle of “Welcoming Tuxedo Ambassador” from Oreo Cookie in 2014 and was happy to be fussed over by visitors. As the years progressed he became increasingly arthritic, and was on medication for it. He was also one of the cats who became rather deaf, resulting in a much louder voice, and a “meow” that was more like the bleat of a sheep.
Tuggy was easygoing with all the cats, but especially with his DoubleWide couch buddies, Colin and Plum. Colin is an empathetic cuddler – he knows who need contact and warmth, and offered it freely to his buddy. Little Manx Plum adored Tugboat, and loved to cuddle with him. Sadly, her Manx Syndrome condition meant that she was often pretty stinky, but Tuggy tolerated it, and we all loved Lisa’s Tuggy-and-Plum sequence of photos.
Lincoln and Tugboat were given all the care that would mitigate their advanced-age problems, and deeply loved to the end. They are greatly missed.
Featured Image: Cinnamon Bun Lincoln (LL)