I wanted a cat all my life. Shortly after moving in with my boyfriend, we heard of an abandoned, 3-week old kitten. We adopted him - it was faith.
Our first rescue, the day he moved in.
Mr. Mau was way too young when he became part of our family. There’s a critical period in kitten development — between four and 14 weeks of age— when a kitten’s personality is shaped by his or her experiences. During the time with their mother and littermates, kittens learn important lessons such as bite and scratch inhibition — how to use their teeth and claws cautiously — as well as other perceptual, motor, and social skills.
Mr. Mau did not get this opportunity. He learned most of what he knew from us - he slept like a human and sat at the table with us. We could even go on walks together (without a leash) or sit in outdoor cafés with him.
Mr. Mau enjoying a lemonade with us.
Mr. Mau, outgrowing his bed.
1,5 years after he stumbled into our life, he got hit by a car and left on the pavement. It was hell. Coming home to an empty apartment was too much to bear, so we went to the shelter for the first time. Obviously, nothing would ever replace Mr. Mau, but we weren't prepared to fall in love like this again.
Momo was found emaciated, roaming the streets with a gift ribbon around her neck. She was battling a cold but seemed very interested in us. We knew she was meant to come home with us. So she did.
Little Momo in her cage.
For the first couple of weeks, she got to know her new surroundings and got used to us. We had to get used to her too, to be honest. It's amazing how different each animal is from the other. While Mr. Mau was a very tough, bold cat that came home with half a bush in his fur (not to forget the countless ticks), Momo was a little, tender girl. However, she had a weird habit of eating everything she would find on the floor (plastic, dirt, human hair...), so we decided not to let her roam the area by herself. It was just too dangerous.
It then became clear that we couldn’t leave her alone all day while we were at work - so we went back to the shelter to get her a sister.
Cleo was found on a parking lot in Hamburg. She was only 10 weeks old and had a crushed leg, so she had to wear an external fixture for about two months until her bones grew back together. She has a funny walk and sits like a human - other than that, she’s healthy and good-spirited.
Meet Cleo, the cat that can't sit like cat.
The more time I spent with them, the stronger I felt about adopting cats (versus buying a cat from the breeder). So I talked to a bunch of people and found that most people don't necessarily want a specific breed or reject the idea of getting a cat from the shelter - they just don't realise how many cats are desperately in need of a loving home. Shelters are overcrowded. But they are full of healthy, sweet and smart animals who were surrendered not because of their behaviour but generally due to the issues of their guardians.
Momo looks like a Disney cat.
So, to counter all these purebred cats on social media, I created an instagram-account - 2chaoscats - to raise awareness of the cuteness of shelter cats. With a couple of thousand followers, I realise that I make no difference at all. But it’s a start.
Follow us on instagram and see for yourself how adorable and wonderful cats from a shelter can be. Adopt, don’t shop.