Welcome to Cat Attitudes! My name is Marj, and my family and I started this website to share our decades of cat experience with you. We have been pet parents to more cats than I can count. Ethel, Pebbles, Candy, Maxwell, Rapunzel…every cat has a different personality, a different “attitude”.
The journey was exciting, challenging, filled with love and companionship…and we thought it was over in 2006. At the end of 2006, our last cat left us, and we decided to take a break. Even though cats are a great source of comfort and companionship, they do take time and care, and it’s so hard to watch them go.
All of our cats have been rescues, or kittens of rescues. It has always been my feeling that when it comes to giving a rescue a “forever home”, the cat chooses you. In March of 2007, my son’s girlfriend at the time asked if she could get him a cat for his birthday. Her intent was to go to a shelter and find my son a new furbaby. After some thought, we decided we were ready for another cat. (Shawn: I didn’t know that! I thought that they told her ‘no’!)
Wouldn’t you know it, four days before his birthday my son called me at work. A dog had chased a very emaciated cat up a tree at his girlfriend’s house. Guess what the next question was? You guessed it: can we keep her? We were looking for a cat, and she needed a home. Perfect. She chose us! We named her “Mary Jane”. This is Mary on the day she came to live with us.
Now that story was a lot more nerve wracking for me–this is Shawn, the son. Hi. I remember having just gotten home from school, and I got a phone call from my girlfriend. She had her best pouty voice on, and in the background I could hear her mom and sister making similar pouty, cooing noises over…something. Our dog chased this cat up a tree! She’s all skin and bones! Our dad hates all animals and would never let us keep her! She’ll die if we let her stay out here! Can you take her? Cue more pouting and cooing.
Now, I was a 16-year-old boy, no sisters, and completely unprepared for how to deal with the womanly onslaught I was now facing. And so, I told her I’d call my parents and see if we could take her. Neither of them picked up of course, and so, I said yeah, bring her over. Naturally, Mom picked up after my girlfriend had already arrived with the cat, and agreed we should probably keep her.
Dad, on the other hand, came in to find my girlfriend and I huddled on the floor protectively around…a cat. Apparently he had been expecting one in the near future anyway. But he knew that. And she knew that. But I didn’t know that! So I jumped in, “Dad I can explain!” And of course nobody needed any explanations, because…she picked us.
About 12 hours after Mary Jane came to live with us, it became obvious that even though she was skin and bones, her stomach had…volume. Mary weighed 4.5 pounds when we got her, and 10 days later she gave birth to two kittens. (Shawn: I remember Mom calling it: “Her stomach is the only part of her that has any weight at all. That cat is pregnant!” And the vet was like, “Well, strays usually get worms, and that can give them a bloated bell–well, I feel a head, so never mind. Definitely kittens.”)
We signed up for one cat, but not kittens. So, we didn’t name them (can’t get attached) and waited for them to be old enough to give away. And weeks went by, and no one wanted our adorable, free kittens. Meanwhile, they were getting into all kinds of trouble. Finally, we decided to name them.
My husband wrote down two names on a scrap of paper. Pixie for the little gray one, because she was petit. And we don’t remember what the one for the orange tom cat was. He had been getting into so much trouble that we had to yell something at him. Usually it was “boy” (because we weren’t naming them, remember), and it just stuck. And so, Pixie and Boy (Beau-Beau) became officially part of the family.
We weren’t sure how they’d handle it when we moved to Florida six years ago, but it has breathed new joy and life into them! They love the way their toys slide across the new tile floor, and basking in the sun. (Unfortunately, on November 15, 2019, Mary Jane passed away. We miss her, but it was very peaceful.)
Meanwhile, on April 1, 2020, Boy and Pixie turned 13. We are having the time of our lives aging together. I think the warm climate has turned the clock back a little bit for us all! Cat Attitudes is our way of passing on this experience, decades of having cats as part of household. We recommend our favorite products, share our experiences and provide insight into the lives of our best friends.
It is with a very heavy heart that we made the difficult and painful decision on 10/16/2020 to allow Boy to join his mother, Mary Jane, in kitty heaven. He was 13.5 years old and was born in our home. He spent most his time playing with his stuffed mouse and sitting on my lap…R.I.P Boy “Beau Beau” Salada.
The End of an Era
After more than 15 years with this cat family and having only one living member remaining, we began to notice that Pixie was losing. Around August of 2022, Pixie began to isolate occasionally.
She seemed to be uncomfortable and in pain. After a few days in the vet hospital with fluids and professional care, Pixie was able to come home and enjoy life again. But we were informed by the vet that there seemed to be to be something going on and an ultrasound done by specialty was recommended.
The news was not good. We took Pixie home and gave her the best quality life over the next few months. The time did come where we could tell that she no longer enjoyed living. On 11/23/22, she became a pet angel and went to be with her mother (Mary) and brother (Boy).
We had been cat parents for many, many years. And we said when our the last of the 3 cats were gone, we were done. But you know how that goes when you are a cat lover. Fast forward a year and some weeks, and we made the decision that we would adopt one more cat.
After spending some time in a “cat café”, a very pretty little girl that the café referred to as “Paloma,” seemed to have chosen us as her new parents. January 04, 2024 a five month old tabby kitten we named “Cyndi” became our next chapter. We are having the time of our lives with this active little girl.