Getting more and more involved with the RSPCA Manchester & Salford branch was something that we were both desperately keen to do. We both loved volunteering at the cattery we just wanted to do more to help. Knowing that as soon as foster homes were full and the cattery was too then a lot of "No" was being said to cats needing the branches help when it should have been "Yes". As we mentioned last week the cattery unfortunately closes from time to time when one or two fluffballs get poorly, mid-March 2012 was one of those times.
After nagging Susie for the past few months she finally caved in and asked us for a huge favour, to put up a small tiny girl who was found cowering in an alleyway terrified of her surroundings. We had a spare bedroom, toys galore and enough food to feed 100 cats in the house so we said yes without hesitation. It was only going to be for a week until the cat flu had cleared up and we could pop her back into the cattery, no problems Susie we said, if you need us to look after her for longer then all you need to do is ask.
Felix as she was called then (as you can see from the picture below, complete spitting image of the Felix cat) was fairly timid to start with, she settled down a fair amount after her first sachet of food, and settled down even more when we all spent the evening in the spare bedroom playing with toys and having massive cuddles too. That night we decided that as much as she looked like the Felix cat a name change was in order. After much deliberating it was finally decided that we would call her Milly.
Milly is about 5 years old but when she first came into our care was very underweight and smaller than Mitzie who was 18 months old then. She was soon on the strict Newton-Conroy diet of all you can eat and started putting on weight and looking a lot healthier. Milly wanted all the attention she could get from us and we couldn't have been happier to give her it, she really was a bundle of joy. At the end of the week we had a phonecall that we weren't looking forward to from Susie. What we hadn't expected was that the cattery was to remain closed for another week, and if it was ok with us could we keep looking after Milly for another week? If it was too much there was space in other foster homes now for her. "Don't be silly Susie, of course we can look after her" and that was that!
Five minutes down the road and I pulled over, Milly was crying, I was crying and I broke the only rule I had left in my life... Milly was allowed to eat some treats in the car, this settled her down a bit but didn't help me. By the time I got to the cattery I wanted to go home, I couldn't bring myself to stay longer than I absolutely had to. I popped Milly in her pen, got all the stuff she needed together and went to give everyone some quick hugs and kisses too. Phone rang again, it was Susie, letting me know again that we had both done a great job with her and that she was surprised that we had been able to take her back. The rest of the phone conversation will forever stay with Susie and me, but in short I cried like a 5 year old girl who dropped an ice-cream for the best part of half an hour. Emma fortunately was in Copenhagen waiting for a connecting flight so I managed to get a call through to her to talk things through.