There she is, the new love of my life – the cat I said I wasn't going to get. Her name is Selene, after the Greek moon goddess. You can read all about the way it came about, and the unique challenges she poses, over at my Cronewyze blog. (Posted there because there are some mystical aspects to her arrival in my life.)
So what's my excuse for changing my mind? Quite a few!
Perfect freedom and self-indulgence pall after a while. And she needed a home. And a dear friend would have been very upset if I hadn't been able to take her.
What about the cost? (Remember I thought the lack of feline expenses would help stretch the pension?)
Well, she's only one cat, not two as I had in the past. She is neither a kitten nor elderly – just seven weeks short of her eighth birthday – so hopefully won't need specialised food nor expensive veterinary treatments.
Also, she seems to be an indoor cat. So far, anyway, she has shown no inclination whatsoever to go outside, though at her last home she did occasionally. The vets tell me that as she has lived to this age without getting sick, if she is to be an indoor cat she will not need vaccinating. After a couple of treatments to be on the safe side, she won't need worming or de-fleaing any more, either.
Until / unless she gives me further notice, I am very happy for her to be an indoor cat. No fights with the bully-boy cat down the road. No bird carcases proudly dragged in for display on the kitchen floor. Little chance of getting a tick. No chance of getting hit by a car. No danger of snake bite. OK, so she won't be able to keep the mice down, but that's all right as long as they stay outside. And if they do get inside, I guess she will deal with them after all.
She is to live on raw food to keep her teeth and kidneys healthy, and I have just discovered I can get the kind the vet recommended very cheaply from the local butcher. The biggest expense will be kitty litter, and after a bit of experimenting I have now found one which lasts 3 weeks, is odour controlled and relatively dust free. It's more expensive than some, but if it really lasts that long will work out the same.
I also had a chat to my doctor about dropping my podiatry treatments. Yes, I was getting a Medicare refund but there was still some initial outlay each time, and a portion un-refunded. Some time back, the doctor had reasons to want my feet scrutinised regularly, but we've now ascertained what is going on with them and what to do about it. Things are pretty well under control, and I am quite capable of cutting my own toenails and filing my own corns. So there's a saving to offset the cost of kitty litter!
I did say I would be worried about being able to care for a new cat properly as I aged. This one, at nearly eight, is already mature. If she lives another 10 years or so, I'm still planning to be around long enough to take good care of her. And what a good incentive to stay healthy!