We got a new kitten!! And we got rid of a new kitten!!
A few weeks back, Mr. G's sister gave his mother a 6 week old kitten. His mother is in her 80's and can barely get around. She needs a kitten like she needs lactating breasts. She called us yesterday and said the kitten was "getting on her nerves because he wanted to play all the time"--imagine that--and she wanted Mr. G to take it.
This aggravated the TICK out of me because I can immediately think of about four instances where people have gotten animals they couldn't take care of, then called us to bail them out. Animals pee, chew, poop, claw, shed and throw up. If you can't deal with all of that, DON'T GET ONE. They're not cute little toys, they require time and work and exercise.
My "favorite" instance happened with the neighbor. Every time I would go over to their house, I played with the cat, and he was a really nice pet. One morning, she called and told Female Offspring #1 that her cat peed all over the bed, and she was going to pack it up, along with food and litter and bring him over. FO #1 told me what she said, and I was PISSED. I said, "Give me the phone. I'll deal with it." I told her we did not want another animal. She said, "I guess I'm going to have to take him to the SPCA then," knowing that we love animals and it would probably be destroyed. I was so angry about her blatant attempt at manipulation, and I said, "It's on your conscience, not mine." We taken in many stray animals--that's how we've gotten the majority of our cats, but I've come to the conclusion that I cannot save every animal, and taking in an animal that I can't afford is not helping it. Then I said, "Why did he pee all over your bed?" She said, "He was walking all over us, meowing, and I guess he wanted out but we didn't get up." They were probably drunk and it served her right.
Another neighbor stopped us one night while we were walking and said she had a Cocker Spaniel that had gotten snippy with her kids and bitten one of them. Did we want it? Hell, I already HAVE one problematic dog, why do I want another one? Fool me twice, and all that. Most recently a neighbor wanted to know if we wanted her Jack Russell puppy because it was shedding in the house. What the hell do people THINK an animal is going to do in the middle of summer?!
Anyway, Mr. G wanted to take the kitten, and I said, "Tell her you'll take it on a trial basis, because if it doesn't get along with the dog, it goes back."
When we got Holly, our cats were already five and six years old, and all Holly wanted to do was play with them. But puppies are clumsy and excitable, and the cats wanted no part of her. Even now there have been times when I could see she wanted to sleep next to one of them, so I thought, well maybe she'd like a kitten. And then I imagined a cold winter's day, them all snuggled up together, snoring away, while Gloria Estefan sang, "Let it Snow" on the radio.
The REALITY of it was the instant Holly saw the kitten she started growling. She's very territorial and didn't want any part of the kitten, let alone us holding the kitten. Good thing we tried this with a cat because we often talked about getting another small dog to keep her company. Obviously she doesn't want company. It would have been really difficult for me to return a puppy.
Mr. G took the kitten back and--get this--his mother says, "Does the dog have to stay in the house?" He FLIPPED. He said, "I'm not going to make MY dog stay outside to accommodate YOUR cat"....among other things, which included a loud lecture on taking pets you don't want. This is really his sister's fault, though. She knows their mother is in no condition to walk outside, and basically all she wants to do is sleep. She doesn't want to chase after an overactive kitten.