My husband and I are suckers. When it comes to animals in need, or even ones who look like their lives are not quite cushy enough, there we are. We can’t help it, its genetic. Husband’s parents once picked up a stray cat while out camping. They named her Ten X for the camp site they found her in. My parents currently have a stray cat they adopted as well as one Husband and I took in but due to his incurable spraying habit, we could not keep. My parents have three and a half acres and a large shed they have given over to him; furnishing it with various heated blankets and cat towers. See? Suckers.
When I met Husband he was living in a rental house with several roommates. He also had a dog and two cats. Elenore his dog, he found wandering the streets in a rain storm. Newton, a stray kitten he picked up somewhere, was pretty evil and left scars on several people who tried, innocently enough, to pet him. Then there was Patches. Husband chose her from the Humane Society because she was old and obese, massive really, and not very likely to get adopted. Sucker, sucker, sucker.
And me? When I met Husband I had recently adopted my roommate’s cat, a three-legged hairless Cornish Rex named Oberon.
My roommate was moving out of state and could not take him. About a week after she left, Oberon whacked his leg stump on a countertop and could not be consoled. The vet said he had exposed nerve endings on the stump and it needed to be amputated. Two surgeries and over a thousand dollars later I was able to take him home. The vet took pity on me and set me up a payment plan. At the time I was working at a daycare making $5.15 an hour. Yeah, I am a sucker.
Our sweet dog Elenore and all three cats, Newton, Patches, and Oberon have long since passed. They are all still very much missed.
Today we have two German Shepard mixes Rosy, a Humane Society dog, and Dexter another stray. Rosy chose us by ignoring us completely in the “getting to know you” pen. At the last minute she walked up next to me and leaned into my legs and just stayed there. That was it.
A month later Rosy and I were taking a walk and saw a frazzled lady in her bathrobe in her front lawn holding a runt of a puppy. Her full grown dogs were very unhappy with her for bringing in this stray puppy and had tried to eat it. I offered her the use of our dog crate. Later that day Husband and I ended up walking home with the dog crate and the puppy we named Dexter. Such suckers we are!
For the last six months or so we have had a cat litter box in our garage even though we don’t own a cat. We originally put it out due to our neighbor’s cat, Delilah, getting shut in our garage and, not having a place to do her business, did it on the floor. Come to find out, Delilah prefers our litter box to the one at her house so now regularly uses it. Sigh.
I also started leaving out fresh water for her after seeing her drinking out of puddles. Now that it is starting to get cold we made a bed for Delilah on Cody’s little canvas lawn chair in our covered entryway. But no, it does not end there. We microwave a pet heating disk and tuck in under the towel so she has radiant heat for up to six hours at a time.
It gets worse people, much worse. Want proof of just how bad it has gotten? Last weekend Husband was doing yard work and notice some standing rain water at the bottom of a kids slide our friends gave us a while back but we have yet to use. Did he dump the water out? No because he saw what appeared to be small tadpoles happily swimming around and did not want to kill them.
Now, I love Kermit the frog as much as the next person but I am wondering if perhaps, just perhaps, those tadpoles are actually mosquito larva. If that is the case I say dump that water out. I have to take a stand somewhere, right?