The shelter told us Fred is 2, but i suspect his real age is closer to twice that on the principle that shelters have a bitch of a time rehoming old cats and always knock a few years off their age to make them more marketable. I don't particularly care. He is wonderful.
When we went to look at cats most of them just lay on the their blankets and ignored us. One or two opened an eye, assessed us as uninteresting, and closed it again. But not Fred, oh no. When Fred saw us he came straight to the front of his enclosure and and greeted us verbally. I replied in kind. We had a very enchanting conversation through the glass before the volunteer came to open the door so we could get to know each other better through a brief session of sniffing and groping. (Kind of like dating when you think about it.)
And just like it was with my Pirate, the minute i touched him I fell in love. Pirate wanted kittens, but I got all watery-eyed over Fred so Pirate caved and we are bringing him home.
Earlier this week I went to the pet store and spent 130 pounds on:
- a carrier
- a litter box
- a litter mat (to trap the gravel before Fred tracks it all over the house)
- litter liners, disposal baggies, and a pooper scooper
- a food dish
- 2 scratching things (a cardboard one for the floor and one made of rope that hangs from a doorknob)
- a fleece hammock that hangs off a radiator (cuz if i was a cat i would SO want one! hell, i'm a human i wish they came in my size)
- 8 packets of treats (4 for UTIs, 4 for hairball control)
- UTI paste
- hairball paste
- a rubber grooming glove
- a wire grooming comb
- 2 packs grooming wipes (not quite as effective as a bath, but a hell of a lot easier and better than nothing)
- a vibrating toy mouse
- a wobble ball
- a feathery thing on an elastic cord on a stick (Pirate loved it so much he played with it for 10 minutes. who needs a cat???)
- cat-wee carpet cleaner spray
- a food dish
- a collar with breakaway safety feature and ID barrel (in a very fetching red, yellow, and black aboriginal-style pattern)
- a book of cat care, heavy on the medical information
Food will be the biggest expense as Fred has to be kept on a special diet owing to his FLUTD. If we give him normal food his ureters will clog up and he won't be able to pee. So by the time we add in the cost of a month's supply of food, the gravel (i want the flushable kind, which ain't cheap), and the cat flap, we're looking at an initial output of over 250 pounds.
Someone told me cats were economical pets. They lied.
At least I'll have him to keep me company over the weekend while Pirate is away. That will be nice. I'll post photos for you. (He's a very handsome boy.)