THE WONDER YEARS
All cat rehoming centres have a very special cat. This cat may not look special or act special but this type of cat is very special indeed. This cat is the Golden Oldie!
Sadly, Golden Oldies are crying out for a home. They tend to be overlooked for younger cats who jump energetically up at the pen door and keenly communicate in their cute way with potential adopters. However, don’t be fooled by the Golden Oldie who seems completely disinterested in you as you pause at the pen and continues to sleep, head hanging downwards as though depressed. This Golden Oldie is depressed. Whilst all cats may find rehoming traumatic it is possibly more traumatic for Golden Oldies who may have spent their whole lives being adored by a human companion who has suddenly left them for a reason they can’t understand and had their familiar territory replaced by an alien pen. Add to this possible geriatric discomforts such as arthritis and it is no wonder the Golden Oldie may barely glance at you and look depressed. However, if you look beyond that demeanour and take a chance on the Golden Oldie and adopt him you will be adopting a faithful and true companion who, once settled will let their true personality shine and be utterly grateful and devoted to you, fulfilling you and rewarding you in a very unique way.
I adopted two Golden Oldies in May 2016 from Worthing Cat Welfare
Peanut (18 years old) and Fizz (17 years old). The advert stated that they had been lifelong companions and were seeking a home together; my heart went out to them and I just couldn’t resist!
Of course, my first thought was ‘they are so old, I might not have them for long and it's going to be so upsetting then they die’. Well since adopting them I’ve realised two things (1) it won’t be upsetting, it will be heartbreaking and (2) what is more heartbreaking is the thought of these amazing cats, who simply crave love and companionship still being in a pen, homeless. Adopting Fizz and Peanut is one decision I made that I am so thankful I made and no matter what heartache lies ahead I would make that same decision tomorrow without any hesitation. They have fulfilled me in a way every cat lover deserves to be fulfilled. Their individual personalities are very obvious now and their little quirks make me laugh. Peanut claimed my bed pillow as her bed and keeps me company every night. She may not move about much but there is a whole lot of personality on that pillow! When I enter my bedroom she gazes at me bright eyed and makes her purr-meow noise. She listens and looks as I talk to her and is amazingly responsive and sensitive to my mood; if I’m feeling upset she will come over to me and sit on my lap. When I put my pyjamas on she gets excited as she knows I’m about to get into bed and she then climbs on to me for a cuddle. She is tough, yet needy and if she wants attention she won’t hesitate to give her urgent human like a scream that has me running for the bedroom only to find her sitting calmly, not dying but just needing a little love.
Fizz is a gentle giant, he prowls the house meowing (he’s a very vocal old man!) and loves to plop himself on a lap – any lap, as my children’s friends have discovered! He won’t retaliate when the other cats lash out at him or take his food. His squawky meow and gently swaying stomach as he plods along will always stay in my mind.
It hasn’t ended there:-
I now have two more Golden Oldies 17-year-old brothers Fluff and Blackey who are complete opposites in looks and personalities. Fluff is chubby, mostly sleeps and always squeaks when his name is called. Blackey follows me around the house like a dog, gazes at me with his sorrowful eyes and paws me to stroke him.
Once you rehome one Golden Oldie these very special cats will have an extraordinary place in your heart and you will never look back and likely not want to consider younger cats, yes, they are going to bring heartache but the happy end you have given them far outweighs your heartache and yes, there may be trips to the vet and medication to administer but there is no financial burden thanks to the generosity of the Worthing Cat Welfare Golden Oldie Scheme. Also, all animals, no matter how young they are become ill at some point and involve work. I feel privileged to have my four Golden Oldies and appreciate each wonderful day I have with them. So don’t doubt it, just do it – open your heart and home to a Golden Oldie and make a real difference to your own life as well as theirs.
Don’t overlook the oldies – they won’t overlook you!