I am currently caring for two dogs and a cat while their owners are away. The dogs are healthy and fine, but this cat simply amazes me.
His name is Johnny. He’s very old. He is missing a back leg (I think it’s a birth defect.) He has diabetes and gets a shot of insulin every morning. He has kidney issues and pees all over the bathroom floor – several times a day. (This five pound cat pees as much in a day as a 150 lb. person, I swear! The good news is he at least goes to the bathroom to do it! Hobbling along on his three little legs, bless his heart.) He has sores at the bottom of his mouth and looks swollen in that area. I worry that he has been living with an infection.
This is a LOT for any one being to contend with. And he does.
The thing that really tugs at my heartstrings is how appreciative he seems of any attention. When I stroke him, he purrs mightily. When I sit at my laptop to write, he comes and lies by my side, even on this hard unyielding concrete floor. When I go to bed, somehow this three-legged cat is able to pull himself up onto the tall bed so that he can sleep in my presence. I started to get clogged up rather quickly because although I adore cats, I seem to be allergic to some of them – especially in the bedroom. I mentioned this to Johnny. I said that I understood this bed was really soft and probably felt very good on his body. I said I understood that he wanted to be in my company. But, I added, unfortunately I can’t really breathe very well with you here. Would you be willing to go to the couch, I ask? And Johnny, bless his amazing heart, does just that. Shortly after my request, he does indeed leave.
This cat is so full of courage. So full of spirit. He is still able and willing to not only eat but beg for food whenever any human is in the kitchen.
I adore this cat. I have such respect for these animal friends of ours who persevere through all kinds of discomfort in order to grace our lives with their presence.
Bless his sweet feline heart. May we all be as brave and uncomplaining as he.