Saturday, January 09, 2010

I'm fat, I'm FIV positive... who will give me a forever home?

Dear George,
Can you help me find a forever home? I am now in the care of Celia, as her temporary foster cat but I badly need a forever home with a very special person because I have special needs.
For one thing I am FIV positive. I came from the home of a cat hoarder and picked up the virus there, where there were so many cats that there were often fights. I nearly lost my life when I was rescued, because the rescue organisation had a policy of euthanasing FIV cats.
Luckily I was passed on to Cats Protection ( who home FIV cats as indoor only cats. I found a loving home but with an elderly human who could no longer cope with the way I dig so deep into the litter that the bits have a trajectory of three feet! (Well, cats like me enjoy a good deep dig).
Somewhere along the way I got fat. Not just fat, actually. Obese is the term used by the vet. I am so fat I can't reach my backside or the lower half of my tummy to groom. There was a deeply shaming moment on Christmas day when Jess, Celia's nephew held me, while she clipped away the soiled area of my bottom and cut out a lot of knots. Such an indignity, really upsetting experience, but I feel better for it.
Love Pusskin
PS I am helping Celia type this. At my size I can block the computer screen really effectively!

Dear Pusskin,
Thank goodness there are rescue organisations like Cats Protection that give FIV cats a second chance. Humans don't put down humans that are HIV positive, so why should they put down FIV cats just because they have the virus. FIV cats can't spread it to humans and many have good quality of life for a long time. They deserve some happiness too.
I can see that you are visibly on the portly side. I take the view that we cats can be fat if we choose, but (how can I put it delicately?) it looks as if you are too well found, too much
embonpoint, and just too much of you all together. Not being able to groom yourself is a deeply upsetting condition. No cat should be expected to live like that. We need to groom. It is part of who we are.
Has Celia done her duty and put you on an obesity diet? Is she being firm and not becoming a fatty enabler like some owners? And is she refusing your requests for more?
My recommendation to you, Pusskin, is to take more exercise. Don't just sit on that cat gymnasium device. Start jumping up and down on it. Hunt for bits of food all over the house - Celia will try to help with this - don't just eat out of a bowl. Chase flies. Chase bits of string. Make her play games with you as much as possible. Keep running up and down the stairs. Get fit not fat. Oh yes, and when you go to her to ask for more food, let yourself be diverted with a game not a cat biscuit.
Finally, there are people out there who will take on a cat with special needs. Be patient. Somebody will want you for your innate charm, your gentleness with humans. They will look with the eyes of love and not see that fat outer cat. instead they will see past the outside into the essential beautiful inner cat.
Love George
PS. A very helpful comment by Puss Puss below. Thank you, Puss Puss


  1. Oh Pusskin! We think you are a most splendid cat. That picture of you in the window is beautiful. We will make our ape ask around those she knows who do not have a cat and are capable of providing you with a safe indoor home, to see if anyone can offer you a home. We are so glad that your branch of CP is not putting down FIV cats.

    Best of luck Pusskin

    Whicky Wuudler

  2. Dear Pusskin,

    I know how it feels to be down on your luck, believe me, but I think you're letting it get YOU down, too. You mustn’t do this. Think about it: there's so much work to be done! Fortunately, there are some humans who dimly recognize that their training is so deficient that they need the calm paw of guidance that a good cat can bring them, and FIV is no impediment.

    For the moment, Pusskin, you are in a good home. In the past, in the quest to continue your vital work, you may have let yourself go a bit, but you have to get fit so you can get back to it. Celia is a good subject to begin on. She is apparently easily trainable, and is in the sad situation of having lost a fine teacher not long ago. You mustn't let her get out of training! Humans need constant reinforcement. When I look at you, I see a fine, beautiful creature that just needs a boost of confidence. Getting back to work is the first step. Since you are FIV positive, you are able to take on a very poorly-trained human and do the intensive work they will need. When you see how easily Celia can be molded, you will regain your confidence, and be ready to take on the world.

    So deep breath and tail in the air, Pusskin--you can do it!


  3. You are really fortunate to have a human like Celia that will care for you. She is a fine individual and really trained well.

    I just found out I have beginning stages of kidney disease. My humans ran to something called the internet and found out I need a good diet and some meds. I think they are tricking me into taking the meds, and I'm not real sure of this new diet. I think I'm eating some high quality stuff when I really love the junk food.

  4. Fluffy and CayenneJanuary 11, 2010

    Puss-Puss is right; you can do it.
    Just make sure you keep Celia on her toes :-)
    You'll soon find your forever home.
    Fluffy & Cayenne

  5. Pusskin, it seems to me Celia doesn't realise you have found your forever home with her. It will take a very, very superb human before she will let you go so keep up the exercises and when you can binkie like me she will be so pleased with you she won't want to part with you.As a house bunny I can assure you outside is not all it is cracked up to be, Especially in this weather. My family will be coming to cuddle you soon.
    Your new friend,

  6. Pusskin, work on your diet, so you'll look fit when that special human who will be your housekeeper will show up for you!
    I've seen cats with FIV living long lives as indoor cats that's true, but who want to be outside in the cold and snow?
    So, buddy keep up the good work and be happy!
    Harvey might be right; may be your humble housekeer is already on duty :-)

  7. I use a litter box with very high sides because I was a digger also and made one too many sand castles on the floor. It is called the "clever cat" litter box and may be helpful for you. My human swears that it is the best invention ever! Here is the link to see what it is like.



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