Monday, October 1, 2012

Foster #2: Awkward Edward

Working 6 days in a row is EXHAUSTING! I finally have a day off today and can semi-relax at home and cross of some things on my to-do list. So much to do so little time!

Let me start by introducing you to my foster for a week and half: Edward.

Honestly his name is just Edward, my boyfriend and I gave him the nickname "Awkward Edward". Edward came into the shelter in mid April and is now approximately a year old. We have four free roam rooms in our cat building where our kitties have the ability to be out of a cage and live a more comfortable life until they are adopted. Unfortunately, unuttered male cats can't be in the rooms for a couple of reasons. Intact male cats are more likely to be territorial and fight as well as mark their territory, which is called spraying or marking. Unspayed female cats are known to do it as well, but it is more common in males than with females. Urine is what's sprayed out onto walls and furniture, and it   is usually a stress reliever for the cats. It's their way of coping with dealing with stress...and at the same time it's telling you something is going on! Young male cats exhibit the behavior more and it can usually be avoided by neutering them early. We attempted making a room that had some intact males with spayed females and it was a DISASTER! The stink from the spraying was extremely difficult to get rid of and many of them would try to dart out of the door whenever they had a chance (searching a mate).

So poor Awkward Edward came into the shelter with two things against him: young male and intact. This meant that he had to stay in a cage until he got adopted. He's been at the shelter since mid-April, which means he's been living in a cage for almost 7 months! A little more than half of his life has been spent in a cage with little human interaction and outside enrichment. It's been tough getting him adopted because anytime someone visits with him in a meet and greet room, he's nervous and uncomfortable. And can you blame him? So we decided to get him neutered, I would foster him until he heals, and then return him to the shelter. Now he gets to be in a free roam room with more space and no more cage life! :)

Here he is exploring at my house and experiencing a bunch of new smells and objects. When I first opened the carrier, he ran right under the bed and didn't come out for a while. Slowly he's been creeping around and learning how to be more comfortable in his new surroundings. What I found funny is how he would bump his nose on things around the house then run away, it was his way of testing things out. Hence the name "Awkward Edward"! He was fidgety, skittish, nervous, and awkward and is still slowly transitioning into a more confident kitty.

Jax has been a wonderful foster brother to Edward :) I let them socialize whenever I'm home and they have become buddies. I've noticed Jax is friends with anybody (human and animal) that I bring he's a great first friend for Edward. He's gentle enough so as not to scare him with rough play, but friendly enough that I find Edward roaming around the house looking for him. I hope that this will help Edward show his sweet personality more at the shelter and helps him find a permanent home.

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