Friday, June 13, 2014

Introducing Anakin

It was October 2001and Mike & I had just gotten back from our honeymoon and returned to work.  We were both employed in the small animal and aquatics department of the petstore where we had met.  We both had bonded over our love of animals as our love for each other grew.  We had a tough time making room for our combined pets in our new marital home together, but we made it work.  I think we had 17 fishtanks going back then!  It was a regular menagerie because neither of us could say no to an animal that needed a proper home.  Almost everything was rescued or adopted.  We even took in unwanted fish that people would bring in to the store because we begged them not to flush them or release them into native bodies of water.

So it was no surprise when a co-worker asked me to come look at what someone had dropped off at the store that I'd end up giving something else a home.  He showed me to a quarantine room that housed a little black cat.
"Oh no. I'm not a cat person," 
I protested. He asked me just to hold it as he proceeded to tell me how he didn't want to vet him and put him in the adoption center until after Halloween because some people adopt black cats for cheap near that holiday to hurt them.  I had never thought about that and I was horrified. Mike was working so I called him over to the quarantine as well.

 I held the precious kitty and batted my sad doe eyes and asked Mike if we could take him home.  Mike hadn't even heard the story or the fact that I was only considering keeping the cat until after Halloween before he said, "Well, ooohhhkaay."  He's always been a softie.  If I asked him to stand on his head and spit quarters, he would.

So after work that day, we put the kit-kat into a box, bought all of the "temporary" supplies we'd need and headed home for what I was sure would be a perilous night.  I had only had 2 barn cats when I had lived on a farm so a housecat would be a new adventure. Mike had never had a cat either.  We were warned that he'd probably find a place to hide and be pretty scared or shy for a while.  Hopefully he was litter trained!  Hopefully he wouldn't terrorize our other pets!  He was checked out by the vets before we took him home and he was in good health and had been declawed.  I would never have a cat declawed, I've interned at a verterinarian's office and I've seen the pain they go through, but what was done, was done, and we hoped for the best.

We arrived at home and quietly placed his box in the middle of the livingroom and set up his litterbox, water, food, and a bed.  Expecting him to go and hide or not come out on his own at all, we were pleasantly surprised when he peeked out of the box, climbed out, had a look 'round, and laid down in the middle of the room.  Like, "Yeah. This is my new house.  I approve."  Then he went to sleep.

We named him Ani, short for Anakin, and as a namesake for Annie, a love that we had both recently lost.

Thirteen years later and we still haven't taken him back to be adopted...he adopted us. 

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