OK, it probably wasn't that many cats at the shelter yesterday, but there were quite a few. Yesterday being the big day, P. and I, plus D. who really wanted to come along, headed downtown to the Anti-Cruelty Society. It is right downtown, and though it has free parking it is in a garage, so I was very glad I waited so we could take the little car and not the van.
(And now an aside on living with a van in/near a large city. The van and downtown really do not mix. I know where I can park to get to certain places we go to often, but figuring out where to put the van is always a part of the equation. Most parking garages don't work and open parking lots in the city either don't accept vans or charge you so much you wonder why you didn't hire a limo to drive you. This particular garage was surprisingly tall enough, but like so many city garages, had a very tight turn that I'm not entirely sure the van could have made. At least it wasn't one of those garages where you go round and round and round very tight steep circles to get to the next level. I hate those.)
But back to my story.
After our less-than-terrific experience with the cat rescue we first tried to get a cat from, we read the Yelp reviews fairly carefully before heading downtown. Most were quite positive, so I thought we would be OK, with only small reservations in the back of my mind. I had no idea what to expect.
When we first got there, we signed in and headed for the room with cats. Lots of cats in their cages with information about each of them on the front. It was a little overwhelming and we wandered a bit. After a while, I pushed P. a little to start narrowing down the choices so we could ask to meet a cat. She chose one and I found a worker. The worker was very up front about the positives and negatives of the animal, and we decided to look at some other cats. When I told her about the population of our home, she didn't bat an eye. Actually, no one at the shelter batted an eye or made any type of comment. Do you know how refreshing that is? So after going through what we felt we needed in an animal (easy-going, likes attention), she suggested that we head over to the free range rooms because those animals tended to be pretty mellow.
In the free range rooms were several pairs of cats which were bonded and needed to be adopted together. One of the pairs were two black, medium-hair, cats who were just over a year old. Pretty much P.'s ideal cat. We spent quite some time there with them and then P. thought she would like to meet a pair of cats in the other room. We were shown to a play room and the cats were brought to us. They were pretty cute... a little bit older than the first pair, part-Siamese calicos, and very curious and sociable. Now, P. had a quandry. Both pairs were lovely and she liked them both.
This is where I really appreciated the staff worker who helped us. At no point did she every pressure us, but shared her opinions about the pluses of each pair, and at P.'s request, the likelihood of each pair being chosen. She then watched P. interact with each pair and had some good insight as to what she saw. Ultimately P. went with the black pair.
All of this took some time, and then we needed to go through the application process. It was fairly painless, just time consuming. (I also haven't been schooled in how to do paperwork for nothing. The intake person was rather surprised at my preparedness. Heck, if paperwork doesn't need such things as notaries, it's a breeze.)
So meet Moon and Midnight.
I'm sure P. can tell, but I'm not entirely sure which cat is which in this picture.
Moon (with TM who was surprised by the flash)
So far so good. The cats are living exclusively in P.'s room at the moment and we will gradually introduce them to Gretel. Gretel thinks our timeline is not fast enough. She knows there is something in there and wants to know what it is. Even though we have showered the silly dog with attention, something is different in her world and that is not good. J. and I are a little blurry this morning because when Gretel is disturbed, she whines. She whines a small and pathetic whine that is nearly continuous. Gretel was disturbed by the smell of cats all night, thus Gretel whined all night. Gretel is a great dog and very patient with the small, energetic children, but she also doesn't seem to be the sharpest knife in the block. At some point she will adjust to her new companions... I hope.
And if anyone was looking for a pair of very friendly and lovely cats, here are the links to them. Alagalla and Ahmar