Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Introducing Summer, the Newest Member of My Family

We are still mourning the loss of our beloved Scotch. I have dedicated this Blog to her. It has been one week since I had to put her down because her liver was failing. To call it a painful decision is an understatement.

We adopted another cat, Summer, a loving 5-year-old, from the Kitchener-Waterloo Humane Society. She is hissing at Gibson, a mischievous 2-year-old feline member of our clan (he actually started the hissing wars, and believe me - he can hold his own), but I am confident they will one day be friends. Sort of confident. A little confident.

We love and adore Summer. Every cat in the world should be cherished. Unfortunately, they're not. Humans are incredibly careless when it comes to the cat population. It has been said that one homeless cat and her offspring can produce 420,000 kittens over the course of seven years if they're allowed to roam free. And judging from the huge number of cats up for adoption, I don't dispute these numbers.

I looked up cats on Pet Finder, one of the major North American databases for people looking to adopt animals. In this region of southwestern Ontario alone, there were more 2,500 cats up for adoption on Pet Finder. That's not counting all of the cats on Kijiji (our equivalent of Craig's List in Canada), Pet Patrol and Grand River All-Breed Animal Rescue.

I look at these beautiful creatures and want to adopt them all. But, alas, I cannot.

And then I hear stories like the one I read in today's Toronto Sun about Humane Society investigators finding an apartment in Oshawa, Ontario, filled with 25 cats living in horrendous conditions, many covered in their own feces.

The Humane Society of Durham Region will clean the cats and put them up for adoption. I hope they all find loving homes.

I didn't mean for this Blog entry to be a downer. Summer is a wonderful addition to our household and deserves a more upbeat welcome than this one.

Still, it is important to reflect on the sanctity of the lives of all cats and recognize that we, as a human race, are failing our feline friends. We need to spay and neuter them and give them loving homes. I honestly don't think I can handle many more stories like the one that happened in Oshawa. And yet, sadly, they are so commonplace on Google News. We can only hope that through a more concerted effort to help our feline friends, this won't always be the case.

Summer and Gibson live in a very loving home. Scotch did, too, during her life. Every cat - and dog, for that matter... every animal up for adoption - deserves that much.

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