Until one has loved an animal, part of the soul remains unawakened

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Until one has loved an animal, part of the soul remains unawakened

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Happy Cat Lady

Happy Cat Lady

Chica's Story

Chica's story

This tiny darling girl is a Manx of sorts. It was one of those special weekends where cat rescue organizations show up at Petsmart with a lot of cats in cages and offer them to the public. I hadn't really been looking for any more cats, but it was love at first sight. She had recently had kittens, nursed them, was spayed and ready for a new home.

The name she had been given by the Animal Shelter Relief organization was Priscilla. Of course I had to change it. I'm fussy that way. I sometimes feel the kitty is not mine unless I bestow their name upon them myself. At first, because of her tiny tail, I considered her name might become, "Bunny". But two other cats with names starting with B, I thought better of it.

I brought her home on January 9, 2013. She didn't like the cat picture on the wall when I was carrying her into her new home. When she saw it she tensed up and hissed at it. I settled her into a room by herself, at first. She never meowed or complained for being alone. She's so cute! When she eats she wags her little tail like a puppy! I often wondered if she was some kind of dwarf cat. She was so tiny! Even at two years old she only weighed about 6 pounds.

In the beginning, I had a terrible time introducing her to the rest of my kitties. At first, behind the door, there were no problems. But as I attempted to get them acquainted with each other, she got extremely aggressive. So, I had to avoid having them in the same room at the same time. If she happened to see them through the crack in the door, she got very ferocious and attacked. She had accidentally gotten out twice and it was disastrous. A few scratched noses and hurt feelings.

Soon, I named her Tootsie the Terrorist. I'm pretty sure that having had kittens in October for her to protect so recently, she still had momcat hormones directing her behavior. I got some Feliway calming spray and had to use it frequently to make peace in the house. As time went on and I was able to introduce her to the rest of the household, she mellowed out, and suddenly, the name no longer fit her. I stopped calling her Tootsie the Terrorist. She told me her name was Maria Guadalupe Elana Rios-Gonzales-Zarasthustra. Since she was found roaming the streets of Salinas (California), it only seemed appropriate to me. But, truly because she was so tiny her name became Chica. I'll never forget when Chica came and slept with me. That's when I knew she had made the transition to be one of the family. That night she made a concerted effort to get through the gauntlet of other cats on my bed to get in under my arm, and proceeded to lick my arm up one side and down the other, as if I were her kitten.

Chica never lost that endearing side to her purrsonality, but unfortunately there was something wrong I didn't understand. At first, I thought her belly was so distended because she was eating like a street cat afraid she would never have enough. But, then she quickly started to lose weight. It seemed overnight that she got down to only four pounds and became so weak I rushed her to the vet. He said she probably had feline leukemia. It was fortunate my other cats had been vaccinated. But, for her it was too late. She was "actively dying" at that time. The best I could do was have her put to sleep. I couldn't bear to watch. I gave her one last cuddle and kiss, and left the room. Perhaps selfish of me, but I couldn't bear to watch.

Afterwards, Chica was brought out to me inside a little cardboard coffin with a flower taped to the top. I'd already been crying, but that took me over the top and I sobbed. I took her home and later that day, we buried her and planted a lime tree over her.





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