How Many Is Too Many?

I have always loved cats, and so has my family. I grew up with them and have always respected and admired them. Never ever in my life did I ever expect to have 17 of them...: Yod, Blue, Pedro, Tippy, Hope, Gordy, Missy, Annie, Lola, Aurora, Recie, Simba (we call him Pissy Pants), Shadow, Salem, Artie, Harvey, and Callie. How did I get here?

Before I got married I lived with my grandfather who had 2 cats. My mom found a box of kittens in a warehouse and managed to adopt all of them out but two. We ended up falling in love with them, and so did my grandfather. When I met my husband he had a sick cat colony living under his back porch (I mention that they were sick because I'm not sure I would have disrupted a healthy colony) and we started rescuing, vetting and re-homing them. Unfortunately several of them had ongoing health issues (not serious) but no one wants a sick cat or kitten! So we ended up keeping 4 of them at our new house after we were married. While we lived there we managed to acquire 4 more kittens of the same litter and managed to adopt two out. So far the total is 4 at my grandfathers house and 6 at our house. We then managed to catch the parents, also unclaimed bringing our total to 8! My irresponsible cousin got two kittens, went to jail and then her family locked them in her bathroom. "Somehow" one of them got hurt and they were going to put them both down. My husband and I being nut jobs took both kittens and spent 1300 bucks on getting the one healthy (someone had stepped on him, and broken his leg very, very badly.). That's 10 at our house and 14 total. This next one is funny. The husband and I were going through the drive through at burger king and this tiny, tiny kitten ran under our car. I'll admit, I had a moment. I looked up at the sky and asked God WHY he was throwing cats at us. Then we got out of the car and tried to catch her before someone ran her over. She was a very feral tortie. It took us 3 hours, we finally caught her going after a birds nest. I assume someone took her in, found out how "mean" she was and tossed her out of their car instead of being responsible. Finally the last two: I helped a man who said his wife was going to make him get rid of his cats because they had fleas pretty badly. I got him some frontline, dosed them and left him with the bottle. Two days later I opened my front door to go pick up a cat I'd just had fixed at the vet and found both of his cats on my front porch. He'd abandoned them there. Tada! 17 cats, one house, all indoors.

It does cost a pretty penny to feed these guys, but we love them. It helps that I am a stay at home wife and so I spend the day with them, and cleaning up after them. Do I wish I didn't have so many? Yeah, I do wish that. Would I ever give them up? Not a chance. They needed us, and have taught us some pretty intense lessons in the last few years. We feel like our lives have been enriched by them. We are proud cat slaves.

rnra rnra
26-30, F
2 Responses Feb 17, 2010

I am in the same boat, with 18! Half of them are reformed ferals! How are you guys now, 4 years later?

Today we have less.

We managed to rehome Simba, and the two oldest cats (Yod and Blue) passed away. We lost one very young and unexpectedly to kidney failure, and one to complications of her previous abuse. Today we have 12, and we no longer rescue. We also managed to rehome a pit bull puppy that got dumped on us.

My cats are aging and, I love them, but I would never do this again. My husband and I have soft hearts, and the cruelty of someone who would toss out, harm, or just allow their cats to reproduce freely makes us angry. It has helped the cats we have, and in some ways enriched our lives while also severely limiting us. Buying a house is hard, getting work done on the house we have is hard, going on vacation for a week is nearly impossible. I have to clean my kitchen every day before I cook, vacuum my couch every day, and keep my clothes in a separate room. I feed all of them Purina Pro, and they have good litter and toys. We just wormed them. The money we spend is tremendous.

I'm down to 12. I'm not sure I'll ever own another pet in my life. I have a hard time imagining not having pets, we love them, but we're due for a break. We've done our part!

You are so right!