Meet the resident furries:
Beatrice Summer the Moggie
Bee was our first mistake. We adopted her when she was about 4 weeks old, from an abandoned feral litter of kittens. Little did we know of the havoc that she would wreak upon our lives. With us, she’s the cuddliest, sweetest little kitty, but once someone new arrives to the apartment, or she has to go to the vets, she lets us know that she’s not happy. Generally blood is drawn. Flying from Dublin-Frankfurt-Madrid with her was not fun.
Mr. Milucho the Himalayan Persian
Mr. Milucho is an esteemed gentleman with a taste for the finer things in life. He abhors seafood and kittens, and enjoys serenading us with classical opera at 4am, and sharing his hairballs with us to find in unexpected places. He was adopted after his previous owners took him and his mum to the vet to have them put to sleep because they were getting divorced and neither of them wanted the cats. Their loss. He’s a model now.
Mango the Mutt
Mango is a naughty old lady in a 5 kilo body. She likes to think she’s the boss. Mango has some identity issues, having grown up with the cats. She’s yet to “discover” herself. She’s a scruffy little mutt with an irresistible charm and a tendency to talk to herself when she thinks no one else is listening.
Poor little Manguito was abandoned in a cardboard box along with her mum and 5 siblings when they were only 2 days old, but luckily they were found and were given a second chance. She now lives a cushy life at the Doctor Loulittle zoo, helping to look after any foster animals that come our way.
Cailín the Spanish Water Dog
Cailín (her name means girl in Irish) came to us pretty much by accident… She was one of a litter of 6, born to a mistreated mum on a farm, in horrible surroundings. We were supposed to foster her brother, but when the protectora (shelter) went to collect the pups, there were only two left. The rest had died or had been killed. Cailín came to stay with us instead, at 5 weeks old, and in a terrible state, covered in ticks and with really severe stomach problems which we thought were parvo. When we met her, we realised that she was going to need a lot of work and dedication, and we knew that we’d be able to give it to her, so she stayed with us. We’re proud failed fosterers!
She spent her first few months learning that not everyone is bad, but was terrified of everything. She just cried constantly for about 3 months. We’ve had some issues with her behaviour which have been quite challenging, but we’ve learned as much from her as she has from us, and we wouldn’t change a thing.
Garfield the Gingerbread Man
Garfi’s an Exotic Shorthair who came to us as a foster in December in a terrible condition, extremely underweight, with a severely matted coat so bad we thought we’d have to shave him. He had eye infections, chronic asthma and a respiratory infection as well as stomach problems.
Our plan was to keep him until he was well enough to rehome, but after a few months we realised that it was never going to happen. Months later he continues to have stomach and breathing issues and needs a lot of upkeep, including having his face and eyes cleaned twice a day, his ears cleaned, daily grooming to help him shed his problem coat as well as visits to the vet on a fortnightly or monthly basis. He often has problems with his asthma which means that we need to give him an inhaler twice a day.
The reality of Garfi’s situation is that a lot of people were interested in adopting him as he’s a purebred squish-face, but many people didn’t realise the time and money that his health issues would require, so in the end he stayed with us. He slotted right in with the family from day 1 and he’s been the most amazing foster daddy to our bottle-fed kittens and pups and is the most patient cat I’ve ever seen! We’re proud to call ourselves failed fosterers for him.
Rocky & Dusty the Chinchillas
When I was in secondary school I longed for a chinchilla but knew it wasn’t practical. However, I got older and practicality went out the window! A few months ago a member of the Madrid Pet Lovers group donated a cage for any fosters that might need it. I took it and offered to foster from APAEToledo.
I had no idea how to look after chins when they arrived, but I soon learned that almost everything I new about them was wrong! A while after they arrived, we realised that they too were here to stay, and they got upgraded to a bigger cage, which the cheeky beggars figured out how to get out of, so we’ve had to invest in metal cable ties to stop them escaping at night. Luckily, after we got them, I spent a while getting the cats used to having them in the house, so on their nightly romps around the living room, no one was hurt! The only victim was a half-eaten paper lamp.
We’ve learned so much from our furry family, but most of all, “You don’t own a pet, you share your life with a companion.”