Welcome back for another edition of Caturday, where we get to know some of my readers fantastic felines! This week we have a kitty that's all thumbs - literally! I'm so excited to introduce you to Sunny, "The Sundance Kid," a true polydactyl cat with big, beautiful paws!
Sunny's owner, Louise writes in to say, "He was abandoned or thrown out at about 6-months-old, and just turned up and stayed with me. His previous owners never came forward - I think his big funny feet put some one off - but you should see him climb trees now!"
Gimme dat pen!
Louise is hoping to raise the profile of polydactyl cats, and show that they are not disadvantaged in any way. Sunny was even a contestant in Cravendale's "Cats with Thumbs" contest, where they searched the UK for the top cat with extra digits. You might remember the milk company's fantastic commercial from a few months ago, where they showed cats with thumbs ready to take over the world!
Sunny wears his own real life kitten mittens!
Lousie also says, "Here is Sunny "The Sundance Kid" proving what a fantastically agile poly cat he is, climbing high up into the willow tree in split seconds - I call him "The fastest claw in the Willow West!", and that's him balancing halfway up the apple tree where you can really see he uses his little feet like little hands as the thumbs come round to grip and steady him."
What a refined looking tuxedo cat! I love that big ol' white chin!
Before sweet Sunny came into her life, Louise also had another cat who was very near and dear to her heart, and she asked if I would feature his story as well.
She writes, "I remembered it is approaching the two year anniversary since I lost Hobo. He came to me as a rescued feral cat, recovering from injuries, he turned into a "one off," a prince amongst cats. I would not have swapped him for ten beautiful pedigree cats, his beauty was his nature; and I only wish I had more than five years of this remarkable animals treasured company. He was such an inspirational creature, who more than deserved the happy life I helped to give him, his is a story worth the telling."
Hobo was Louise's little "Mewli Mew," who came into her life when he was two years old, and recovering from a broken leg and nose, possibly from some kind of accident. He had a bad skin condition, and "frankly, a bad attitude, but he was a wild boy after all."
I'll let her tell you the rest..
"Gradually I won his trust, and he turned into a prince amongst cats. It was a turn of 360 degrees, and it would have been hard for anyone to guess, and I'm sure people did not believe his difficult beginning in life; scavenging and living off vermin as a feral boy. This creature was full of love and hope and he actually just decided all by himself that he loved people, and would sit and flirt with any passerby he invited/was welcomed into at least 2 people's house that I knew of; He was just so devastatingly charming, where did he learn that? The answer is that is was just in him, waiting for the right circumstances to nurture his beautiful nature.
He grew himself a beautiful thick coat, and I was flattered one day when an elderly gentleman asked if I wasn't worried that "Someone may steal him? Because he was so beautiful and friendly, he looked like a very expensive cat!" It just shows that beauty is in the eyes of the beholder - well bless him for saying that. I am sure if Hobo could've understood, he'd have thought he was the Cat's Whiskas. But, yes he did turn into a very bonnie boy, my little Mewli Mew.
"You can see in the photo of him on the bin, "his viewing position," and his little raggedy ears. He spent approximately the first two years of his life feral, and had the fighting scars to prove it."
Hobo loved company. I know he got lonely when I was at work and made new friends, and he learned to communicate very well. He had about 15 cat words, for example his "Hello" was different to "Hello, I know you." He would sit on the bin outside for a good vantage point and talking mostly to himself, he would call in recognition, a very distinctive chirrup as some one he knew as a friend was coming up the road, then he would wait for them in the front gate to be greeted and petted by that person. I never had a cat that did that. I think he began to think his full name was Hello Hobo, because he became so used to people talking to him.
He was intelligent, responsive, and polite - which is really saying a lot for a cat; He waited for a word and signal to jump on your knee, and understood and responded to the signal to get down if you wanted to move. Any one new coming to the house he would do his "hello" and quietly waited for the signal to approach them. If someone didn't want his overtures, they only had to hold up their hand and say quietly "No," and he always respected that and just stayed the distance.
Like lots of cats he waited for me coming home, and recognized the sound of the cat, he came out to meet me, even if it was pouring down and I had to dry him afterwards, he liked that. He always came when called, with the exception that he couldn't hear me because he was snuggled up one someone's knee in their house. But he knew I was his Cat Mama, and I know he loved me the most. I didn't think I would be able to have another cat after Hobo, because it was such a shock to lose him so young, but I had the pleasure of this fantastic creature in my life for five years.
Then out of the blue, a small polydactyl cat turned up in my garden in June of last year, as if fallen from the sky. No one knew where he came from, no one came to claim him, perhaps the spirits in the great cat world beyond sent this lost and lonely boy to me. So I adopted him, life goes on and here was another little waif with funny big feet that needed my attention - Sunny, the Sundance Kid."
Thank you to Louise, for giving us a look at her beautiful black cats this week! It's clear that she shares such a special connection with both of them, and I feel incredibly honored to have read her touching remembrance of Hobo.
I hope that Louise and Sunny enjoy long and beautiful life together, and have a feeling that if cats with thumbs do end up taking over the world, this little "Sundance Kid" will end up leading the pack!
Reminder! Don't forget to enter for your chance to win a custom drawing by Steve Gadlin of I Want To Draw A Cat For You! Click here for all the details!
Want to see your cat(s) on Catsparella? I'm always taking submissions for my weekly Caturday post! Email your best kitty pics to firstname.lastname@example.org, and include your cat's name and anything else you'd like to share! I can't wait to hear from you!