Because we were travelling this Christmas, we did our official family present ceremony the weekend before, when Mabel got her big huge Playmobil thing and Dash got his scooter and B and I exchanged some things that were partly almost identical (but complementary). So on Christmas morning itself the kids weren’t expecting anything beyond their stockings until the big dinner with cousins later in the day. So, the stockings were ransacked, the oranges discarded, the chocolate eaten before breakfast, the small items admired or ignored… and that was it. Except we did have one more thing: an announcement.

No, I’m not pregnant. Don’t be silly.

The announcement was that when we got back home we would commence looking for a kitten. They were pretty excited about that. Mabel spent much of the rest of the trip saying “kitten kitten kitten kitten” at us for days at a time and saying we shouldn’t have told her because now she would obsess about it until we stepped off the plane. I cautioned that we would not be dashing straight to the kitten shop and getting a kitten the moment we got home; that this was simply the beginning of being open to finding a kitten.

And so it has been, because the animal shelter doesn’t have any kittens right now. (Yes, the irony. When we visited in the summer they had baskets of kittens, more than anyone needed; but it seemed that everyone had been adopted for Christmas. There were hardly any animals there at all.) We’ve taken a couple of books about cat care out of the library, I’ve nosed around PetSmart to see what there is in the way of litter trays and cat carriers, we’ve agreed that the ideal would be, in fact, two sibling kittens, to keep each other company and spread the love a bit. There were even two sibs at PetSmart (which offers adoptions, they don’t sell bred kittens), but they cost twice as much as the shelter and I didn’t fall instantly in love with them and the next time I looked one of them had gone so that was that.

It’s possible that I’m overthinking this. But even if we go to the big county shelter (on my list for next weekend … maybe) and they have bushels of kittens, how do you choose? These animals are going to be part of our family for years to come; can we just grab any two that look cute? Or the only two they have, if it’s like that? Perversely, I don’t want to get two more grown up cats whose personalities are already established, because they’re someone else’s cats already, not ours.

So, in short, I want some choice but not too much. I want a kitten (and its sibling) to choose us, so that we know we’ve chosen the right ones. I want a sign from the Cat God. (Is that Bast? I think it’s Bast. Dash would know, because he’s read Rick Riordan’s Egyptian series. He says they’re not as good as the others.)

But anyway, look out for some cute kitten photos on a blog near you, coming soon. I hope.

Girl sitting on a log wearing a sweater with a kitten faces print.

Mabel’s new top has kittens all over it. This was a coincidence, I promise.

5 thoughts on “Capprehension

  1. Angela O'Donovan

    Ha ha Ha! If you have Dash and Mabel with you it will all happen fast. You’ll likely be going home with the first two or only two, depending on how many there are to see.

    We took two siblings and their personalities were already there. Like having children in a way.

    A word of advice – buy the biggest box type litter tray with a lid including a charcoal filter. Lots of good litter. It’s like nappy packs – you always need the bigger sizes no matter what’s on the packet. Change it often. You’ll get used to it.

    You won’t be watching so much tv/Internet/whatever. They will be the best entertainment and company at home. It will be like your very own savannah with young lion cubs.

    Our Bagheera is nearly 12. Much loved by me and ds. DH is less enthusiastic.

    Do it now – you’ll never regret it.

  2. Muuka

    How exciting! We’re getting a cat soon too but I did not think of getting a cat care book from the library. Thanks for the reminder and good luck, I hope you find one or two that will fit in perfectly with your family.

    1. Maud Post author

      I’ve decided that cat care books are like pregnancy books. You read one because you think you should, but for all the small amount of useful information it gives you, it also provides you with lots of things you never thought of worrying about before and makes you afraid this whole plan was a bad idea. Best just to forge ahead, I think.

  3. Rebecca

    There is, actually, a kitten season in the summer. I have found some as early as mid February and my neighbor did exactly what you described and was able to find a shelter kitten the week after Christmas. We got ours in July (he was born in April last year) and it was dead frustrating to “shop” for kittens. Look for bright eyes, ears that respond to your voice, one who will calm down and purr for you. At the very least, no runny eyes and noses as that is a sign of sickness. There is a kitty out there for you, I KNOW it! Good luck!


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