Austin is a four-year-old, wild and crazy Bombay cat full of energy and mischief. He resembles a miniature panther with the purrs-onality combination of a dog, a cat and a monkey.
Becky loves cats and is allergic, but she can’t live without them. She discovered that short-coated Siamese, Bombays, Tonkinese lessen her allergies.
She and her husband, Tony, attended a Cat Show, looking for a furry anniversary present. They found a purebred black Bombay kitten for sale.
“The second the kitten was in my arms, he began purring and cuddling,” said Becky. “When returned to his cage, he reached out for me. Again, he was placed in my arms. This time he grabbed hold and would not let go. He had everything in the cage: friends, food, toys; but he chose me. We named him Midnight Austin K13 in honor of two fictional talking cats and he was the breeder’s thirteenth kitten.
“My wild present is a gift of laughter and terror. Daily, he gets into as much trouble as two kittens. Originally, he was sold to another person who later decided not to adopt him.
“I’m certain that if that purrs-on had gone ahead with his adoption The cat the lady would have phoned the breeder begging to return the wild and crazy cat,” laughed Becky. “If there’s a high shelf, he’s there. The tops of doors are a favorite. He hops up and rides the swinging doors, hanging on with his claws. To get him safely down, my husband and I back up to the door, bend over, and let him jump on our backs. There are days when I don’t want to deal with a cat on top of my office door, so I leave it closed. Austin head-butts the door until it is opened and then he jumps up and commences yowling in triumph from on high.
“He’s like the Energizer bunny. He runs on a cat wheel during the day and into the night. The wheel is like an oversized hamster wheel. It’s his second one; he wore the first out! He runs so fast that he spins upside down. When he hits the high point, he falls back onto the lower part of the wheel with a ‘thunk’ and continues running with scarcely a pause of the wheel’s turning. All the while, he is doing ‘victory meows’ as he runs. His tail’s straight up in the air and it’s absolutely adorable.”
“He also has a ball pit in a flat storage container with three packages of colored balls. He loves climbing in and wading through the balls. If you move ‘his’ pit, or put the cover on, he’ll find you and fuss until you fix it. He also jumps into open kitchen cabinets, so we keep the kitchen door closed when we are cooking.
“But his very favorite toy is a potholder - a round terrycloth chef’s potholder. All potholders must be hidden, or he steals them. If you toss his potholder, he rushes after it and fetches it back to us. He will place it on top of the food dish. It’s disintegrated into a disreputable piece of fabric, having been washed many times, but it’s HIS potholder and you better not take it. He’s a fabulous cat except that he thinks that he’s a flying monkey!”
“After surgery, Austin needed the Cone of Shame and he made hating it epic,” said Becky. “He banged the cone on every surface he could find. Its noise reminded us of a prisoner banging a metal cup against cell bars. We called the vet in desperation, who suggested we put the cat in a baby t-shirt. When Tony went to buy one, the staff was laughing at his request. As embarrassing as that was, we think Austin feeling shame of the cone was worse. The t-shirt worked great!”
Frank’s dog also hated the cone of shame, so he bought a pool noodle, cut it into 3” pieces, strung it on something, then put around his Shepherd’s neck.
“I found the instructions on the internet,” he said. “My dog liked his colorful necklace, and it did not hurt his self-esteem. Best of all it had easier movement and he could not rip out his stiches. When he took a nap, it acted like a pillow for him.”
“After our pet’s surgery we purr-chased a comfortable soft pet collar from a pet store,” suggests Adrienne in Connecticut
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Cottage Grove Humane Society for Neuter/Spay Assistance Program: 541-942-3130