It’s been a while since I’ve updated anything about Phoebe. Can you believe it’s been almost two years since she was very sick and diagnosed with kidney disease? She had dropped five pounds, and while she had always been thin, she looked like death. I said goodbye to her, convinced she wouldn’t be coming home from the vet with me.
Phoebe is now 16 years old and probably on the ninth of her nine lives. Even when we adopted her she had already been shot by a bb gun and some sort of trauma resulted in the loss of half her tail. There was the time she was locked in my neighbor’s shed for four days straight without food or water. And a time when she somehow got a puncture wound on her back, which became infected – resulting in surgery. It’s been a long time!
When Noah decided to move into an apartment, he said he wished he could take Phoebe and Estelle with him. Phoebe was always “his” cat. he has a strong bond with her.
|Noah and Phoebe in 2009, the day we brought Phoebe home
I was about to dismiss the idea, but then I got to thinking about it. Phoebe has made it clear that she would rather be the only pet. She gets along well with Joey, but hates the other cats. Chick and Duck torment her (they only try to play with her, but she wants nothing to do with them).
|The only cat she’s ever gotten along with is Chandler. But then again, *everyone* loved Chandler.
With Phoebe being old, slow and a third the size of the cats, I constantly had to separate the cats to accommodate Phoebe. I feel extremely protective of her even though she is built and has proven she can take care of herself.
It was always extremely difficult to get her to eat. For the past couple of years, I’ve been doing everything I can to get her to put on some weight — trying lots of different kinds of food — but she’s not the least bit motivated to eat. Feeding the cats was extremely stressful. Along with their dry food, I’ve started giving them wet food once a day (they go crazy for it) to hopefully tempt Phoebe. Each time I had to watch the cats like a hawk so they wouldn’t steal Phoebe’s food. (If I didn’t keep them away, they would go sit right in front of her to intimidate her into putting down her plate.)
As I thought about what Noah said, I realized that Phoebe would probably be thrilled to live as a solo pet with Noah. She has a strong bond with him. And he could feed her wet food as often as she ate, allowing her to take her time (considering there weren’t more cats chasing her). Noah said there was a $350 pet fee in the apartment, which he couldn’t afford. I told him we could do a short trial and if she seemed to be doing well, then Jerry and I would pay the fee as well as her care (food, litter, vet).
Jerry and I brought Phoebe to Noah and I was sure she would have freaked out and wanted to come home with us. But she looked so comfortable there almost immediately! When he realized there were no other pets around, he relaxed and didn’t try to hide like I expected. Noah kept sending me updates (he knew I’d ask him 100 times a day if he didn’t, ha) and she’s thriving!
In addition to her dry food, she ate liquid food three times a day. She also likes the warmer temperature in Noah’s apartment (our thermostat is at 68F, I don’t know what Noah is, but it’s definitely warmer). We brought her favorite beds in there and she loves laying in front of the heater. He had no problem using the litter box (he never did, but I wasn’t sure how he would adjust). She looks really happy!
I miss having her around, but because she’s with Noah, I know she has so much attention and love — and I can go see her whenever I want. Noah and his girlfriend (who also adores Phoebe) work opposite schedules, so she’s rarely home alone. My house is a million times more peaceful without fighting (Estelle doesn’t like Chick and Duck, but they leave her alone). Feeding pets is stress-free.
I never thought this would be a solution (but then again, I never expected Noah to leave so suddenly). It’s working great and I’m thrilled that Phoebe is doing so well. I want to get my scale over there in a few weeks and see if he has gained any weight! 😉