Saving Joseph Cat Rescue Story

by Belinda Blake
(Montreal, Quebec, Canada)

I was moving in with my fiance, and we had just signed the lease on a new apartment. We weren't allowed dogs, but were allowed to have one cat. I started checking around the local shelters, and I realized that I had a thing for orange and white cats. I called up one shelter, who sent me to their website to see this orange and white medium length fur cat they had named Joe.

I checked out the website, and called them back immediately and told them "Please don't adopt him to anyone else, I am coming right away to see him!". They told me that it wouldn't be a problem seeing as it was now the end of February, and Joe had been there since the beginning of October, living in a cage.

They told me that alot of people were interested in Joe, but Joe was never interested in them, so they never let the adoption process go through, since it had to be a two way adoption.

Joe had been found in a house completely neglected, with fleas, ring worm, and hardly no fur left and was malnourished and starving. I arrived there at the vet hospital/rescue and they had about 20 other cats as well all locked up in cages. Joe was glancing out of his cage at me and my fiance, but didn't look too interested. I'm sure he's been through this many times before. People come in, look at the cats, walk out, and leave him there. A few of the other cats were sticking their paws out of their cages, trying to grab on to my clothing, meowing for attention, and rolling around in their cages trying to look "cute".

I asked to see Joe, so the Vet took him out and put him on a table infront of us, and I started petting him, and he kept trying to jump off the table (probably since he hadn't been out of his cage too much in the past 5 months). I picked him up and took him in my arms and started petting him and kissing his head. He was reluctant at first, but started to open up slowly. I asked him if he wanted to come home, and
he ignored me. My fiance wanted to see another cat, so I had to put him back in his cage (1 cat at a time policy). I put him back and closed and locked back the door, and the other cat my fiance wanted to see was right above Joe's cage. We began looking in that cat's cage and began to open the door, and a little paw stuck out and grabbed my pant leg with a little meow. It was Joe. I looked down, took him back out of his cage, and told the Vet that we'd be taking him home. Even the vet was surprised that Joe reached out to me. So I took the 2 and 1/2 year old bundle of fur home with me.

The first few days he was VERY independent, completely ignored me even, and suffered from what my vet calls "cage syndrome", where he would get up every twenty minutes, eat, then lie back down and sleep, and he'd repeat this process all day long every single day for about two weeks, because that's all he knew life as since he spent 5 months in a small cage doing just that all day. Then Joe started opening up more and more each day, showing HUGE improvements. He began exploring, cuddling with me, following me around the house, playing with toys that I had bought for him. And now a month later I have a perfectly healthy, crazy cat, with the energy of a kitten who loves to cuddle, listen to RelaxMyCat music, run up and down the stairs all day, wake me up at 5 am with my alarm clock by biting my ears and pawing my face, and has his 30 minutes of crazy psychotic exercise every evening around 9 pm where he runs around the house and climbs up walls and plays with everything. He gets into mischief, rolls the toilet paper rolls down the stairs, scratches at the window screen, etc. He also has an obsession with attacking feet, but he is one of the most loving and cuddly cats that I have ever met in my entire life, and every day I am so happy to have chosen Joe, or should I say, been chosen by Joe.

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