Our Romeo has been with us for almost a year, and he has been nothing but pure joy. Read his original story here. This is the continuing story of our loving boy.
Romeo is not a formerly feral cat; someone at some time gave him some attention, maybe even some love. For a period, however, he did live the life of a feral cat, and fell prey to hunger, sickness, and conflict. He was people-friendly from the time he came to us, despite his tough circumstances – whether friendly by nature or by nurture, we cannot say. He is, however, a rarity, and moreso than just his sunny disposition. Our anecdotal experiences suggest that truly outgoing and friendly cats appear once in about 15 cats. A good number of cats are cautiously friendly, but the majority of felines make only a few close human connections (like “the best cat ever” who nobody but its human has ever met, because it hides whenever anyone comes to visit). Romeo is the one in fifteen – a true outgoing, people-liking, friendly cat.
Romeo has FIV, and he acquired it from living amongst feral cats, animals that fight to survive. It is a disease that requires special care and extra attention – it is not a death sentence, and should not be a deciding factor in his adoption, unless the cost of his increased care would be prohibitive to his human.
Cornell University’s College of Veterinary Medicine has an excellent overview of Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV), that you can read here. It is a straightforward and realistic explanation of the disease and what can be expected, giving insight into a misunderstood illness that previously would have been solved with euthanasia, as currently there is no cure.
We know that his prognosis scares most people. We also know that his situation created the feline he has become. As with so many of the cats that we clutch from dire circumstances, his gratitude is evident. On top of this, his personality is sweet and gentle, he is attentive to others of his own kind, and he is especially happy socializing with humans. He is highly empathetic, and often breaks up skirmishes between his fellow felines, and quite inexplicably will also try to calm people when conversations or social situations get heated. Many will argue that cats cannot possess human traits, and in many instances we would agree, but in Romeo’s case, it is not a perception, it is a fact.
Romeo’s health has been excellent to date, which is a very good indicator of the life that he should have. His immune system has been strong enough to avoid three separate waves of upper respiratory sickness that made their way through our feline family since his arrival. Our veterinarian puts his age at approximately three years, give or take a year. When he was inducted, vaccinated, and neutered, he had scar tissue removed from his hind quarter (most likely the defensive wound that gave him FIV) which has not returned. At this point, he has a clean bill of health.
As with so many of those in our care, Romeo is not an easy “sell,” and thankfully we are not in any kind of business that sells anything. What we do is a labour of love. We grow very close and very fond of each member of our clowder, and we do not rush placing them in homes. They will find their home soon enough, and we will wish them well, and miss them like hell when they go. Romeo has been here awhile, yes, but not because he has been a problem, but because he is so sweet, so unique, that we wanted some more time with him.
It’s Romeo’s time now. Is it yours? Contact us if you would like to know more.