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Pet rescue

All's now in readiness concerning Dad's move; he and his possessions will be ferried over to his new home on Aug 25th. Unfortunately though, his cat Apie will not be going with him. I received a phone call from the move coordinator earlier this week to say that alternative accommodation would have to be found for her. I was surprised, as I had already cleared her inclusion in the move with the staff at the new home, but the move coordinator explained that my father no longer cared for his cat in any way, and hadn't done so for quite a while. Instead, Apie'd been dependent on the kindness of individual staff members for a semi-regular top-up of her food and water bowls, but her litter box was only ever cleaned when I came to visit. With the closure of the home imminent, many members of staff had already left, and care for the cat had become very erratic, so please could I come and do something about it? Also, the new home had asked for assurances that Dad could and would take care of his pet by himself; the move coordinator had decided not to lie about it, and the upshot was that Apie was no longer welcome in the new home.

Of course, I'd been aware for some time that Apie wasn't being cared for properly. I didn't want to upset my Dad, but every time I visited, I'd try to make him see that looking after her was becoming too much for him. However, the merest suggestion that she'd be better off living with Mum (who'd years ago agreed to take her in if anything were to happen to my dad) met with fierce opposition from his side. He wouldn't be parted from his cat, denied that she was in any danger of neglect, and whoever said he wasn't taking care of her was a filthy liar. Her weight loss of recent months was due to her extreme old age, he claimed, and nothing to worry about. Try and seperate them, and I might as well just plunge a knife into his heart...and so, although I felt sorry for the cat, I let the situation continue. Until today.

I hadn't been able to visit last week, so the litter bin was filled to overflowing. Forced to find somewhere else to do her business, she had peed and pooped on a pile of newspaper in a corner of the couch. There was no water and no food, and according to the staff log, the last time anyone had put some out for her had been three days ago. So I told Dad I was sorry, but I'd come to take her to Mum's and that's why I'd brought the cat basket. I explained to him that the new home had changed their minds and wouldn't take her after information they'd received from the move coordinator, pointed towards the couch, showed him the sorry state of the litter box and her empty bowls, and...he finally agreed to let her go. Mum came round to see if I needed help persuading Dad, but all she had to help me with was carry Apie's food containers. Poor Dad! He had tears in his eyes as we left, and I know he's going to miss her terribly.


( 14 Speak Like A Child — Shout To The Top )
Aug. 16th, 2008 05:30 pm (UTC)
Aw. I'm sorry you had to do that. And I feel for your dad. And for his cat. But, yeah, it had to be done. :: hugs you all::
Aug. 16th, 2008 08:47 pm (UTC)
Apie seemed to take her relocation in her stride (she meowed a bit, but she didn't hug the walls or hide away under the sofa when she was released at Mum's), but I'm afraid Dad will take a while longer to get used to the situation. I wish it could have been otherwise, but I'm convinced that both my father and the cat will be better off in their separate new homes.
Aug. 16th, 2008 11:02 pm (UTC)
My dad cried a lot after I took the feral kitty he'd been caring for and her kittens away to be placed for adoption elsewhere. I felt pretty bad about it because he obviously loved her and since she was feral, it'd be hard to place her anywhere else.

But he'd admitted that he couldn't care for her himself (let alone her and the kittens!) and he knew it was for the best.

And Tippy was place on a fenced-in acreage where she could be wild yet stuff herself with premium kitty food. Three of her kittens all went to the same family. And I adopted his favorite kitten into my own family.

So it all worked out for the best for everyone.

Even though every time I start to talk about my kitten, Zoe!, he immediately assumes, "She's dead, isn't she?"

Aug. 17th, 2008 08:36 am (UTC)
I'm confident Apie's story will have a similarly happy ending. Mum and Apie are already well acquainted with one another so I expect they'll adjust to a new life together easily; and as to Dad...yes, he will miss her and feel sad, but he will come to accept that their separation was for the best.

Even though every time I start to talk about my kitten, Zoe!, he immediately assumes, "She's dead, isn't she?"

Hee! That's really funny.
Aug. 17th, 2008 01:42 am (UTC)
Awww, how terrible for both Apie and your Dad. However, it was clearly a bad situation for her and something needed to be done. I hope she regains the lost weight quickly and is happy in her new home.

I hope your Dad gets over it quickly as well, but you did the right thing. *hug*
Aug. 17th, 2008 08:20 am (UTC)
Getting her weight back up is our prime concern now; she's dangerously thin at the moment. I really couldn't have left her with my dad another day - in fact, I ought to have kidnapped her weeks ago, although I do think she stands a very good chance of recovery in Mum's capable hands.
Aug. 17th, 2008 04:20 am (UTC)
Aww. I'm so sorry for your dad that he had to give up his kitty, though I'm glad Apie will be taken good care of.
Aug. 17th, 2008 08:27 am (UTC)
I'm so glad Mum didn't hesitate to take her in. After all, she hasn't had a cat for 23 years, and has gotten quite used to living without cat sick and fur balls and scratches on the furniture during that time...But she and Apie will be fine, I'm sure of it.
Aug. 17th, 2008 01:39 pm (UTC)
*hugs you tightly* What a tough position to be in! I'm so sorry for you Dad, and Apie. I think that you made the best of it though, and I'm glad that Apie had a place to go.
Aug. 17th, 2008 03:45 pm (UTC)
Can you believe I didn't actually sleep very well the night before I did the dastardly deed? Though in the end it wasn't as hard as I'd imagined, to get Dad to see it really was for the best that Apie go and live with Mum.
Aug. 17th, 2008 02:15 pm (UTC)
Heartbreaking. You did a good thing.
Aug. 17th, 2008 03:49 pm (UTC)
I know, but I made my Dad feel sad, and I wish I could have spared him that.
Aug. 17th, 2008 04:07 pm (UTC)
It was a hard thing to do, but the right thing. What else could you have done? You did it with kindness, too. I'm so glad that you could help the cat and your Dad.
Aug. 17th, 2008 09:07 pm (UTC)
I spoke to Mum on the phone just now: Apie's settling in well and Mum'll drop in on Dad tomorrow, see how he's doing too.
( 14 Speak Like A Child — Shout To The Top )
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