There have been cats in my life since the year dot. Thanks to my mum we usually had a collection of around 4 to 6 cats at home. Strays of varying shapes and sizes. Mum could never ignore a cat in need. Something obviously rubbed off on me. By the time I was 13 I was rescuing farm kittens. Some survived and some didn’t.
When I left home it wasn’t long before I had my own cats: Pooh and Bemoth. Years later when mum died I inherited her cats. Those, combined with a couple of London street cats meant it I was living with 4 to 6 of my own. When people ask me where my love of cats comes from I usually tell them it’s in the genes!
In 2009 I relocated from London back home to Scotland, settling in Edinburgh. I like all cats: from maine coons to moggies. I couldn’t believe my eyes when a “stray” maine coon appeared at my window within 2 months of arriving in Edinburgh. However some snappy detective work found out that this cat did in fact belong to my neighbours.
Len’s presence though got me thinking. Could I have a maine coon? But I wasn;’t sure. After all, why have a pedigree cat when so many rescue cats need homes? That’s a question each individual has to answer for themselves. But Jedi arrived, followed by Jones then Teddy. They are all fantastic cats, and get along with the moggies just fine.
But I really must tell you about Dylan and Bruno. I was already volunteering for a small family run rescue in Fife when the first maine coon arrived. As a rescue volunteer it’s hard not to like the cats that come into the rescue. Some you like more than others, and some make a huge impression. Sometimes the cats stories are heartbreaking and the condition of the some of the cats is appalling.
Dylan’s mother was lucky. She was found in time and her kittens were hand reared at Sunny Harbour Cat and Kitten Rescue. All the litter was tabby, but it was a litter of “all sorts” as each kitten was very distinctive in build and personality. Dylan was probably the most extrovert. Rather to my surprise he took a shine to me..and unexpectedly joined us in August 2010. He is a fantatsic little cat, with more personality in his left front paw than many cats have in their whole bodies. But it wouldn’t have been this way if he hadn’t found his way to Sunny Harbour.
Fast forward nearly 2 years and a street cat called Bruno arrives as the Harbour. He’s the cat in the header image of this blog. There are Bruno’s in every village, town and city. Bruno is in terrible condition. Will he make it? We don’t know. But the sad thing is that every Bruno could have been a Dylan.
There are sadly a huge number of cats who need help and owners and members of the public who need educating. A cat’s breed or background is no predictor of whether they may fall on hard times.