When you adopt an animal, they become a part of your family. Once you bring an animal into your home, you’re supposed to be responsible for their well-being for the rest of their life. Sadly, pets, and cats, in particular, are often abandoned at shelters for a variety of reasons.
The main reasons for abandoning cats include moving, poor health, a family member having allergies, or (in uncontrollable circumstances) the cat’s owner being put in a nursing home and/or passing away. In the last scenario, the cat being abandoned has often been the older owner’s companion for years. Considering cats live 16 to 20 years, most of the time, these felines being left at the shelter are, sadly, seniors themselves. And that’s exactly what happened to Jamie.
Jamie, a 13-year-old Burmese cat, was surrendered to the RSPCA Australia when his owner moved into a nursing home.
When Jamie arrived at the shelter, he wasn’t in the best condition— to put it lightly. The ginger kitty had bad teeth, some serious kidney problems, and a nasty case of cat flu. It was clear he was going to require some medical care.
Staff immediately got to work fixing up ol’ Jamie, giving him medications for his cat flu and feeding him a special diet to help his kidneys. With their constant and devoted care, Jamie started to feel better.
Despite the fact that Jamie was healthy, staff wondered if he would ever find another home.
As New York Daily News explained, “Cats over age 10 are considered seniors in terms of their medical condition,” and, sadly, “the majority of the cats in the shelter—those over age 4— are overlooked, and too often sacrificed to make room for more adoptable kittens.”
Luckily, that’s when Sarah Dempsey arrived on the scene.
Sarah Dempsey had been looking for a cat at the shelter when Jamie caught her eye.
She lived alone and needed a companion to keep her company, but something about Jamie attracted her. In an interview with the Dodo, Sarah said, “When I first met him, he was asleep, but work up as I bent down to look at him.”
“He clearly wanted some pats so I stuck my hand through the slot of the enclosure and he head-bumped me and purred.”
“Later the staff let him out to see how he was with me and he was so affectionate.”
When Sarah brought Jamie home, the senior kitty wasted no time getting attached to his new mother. All throughout the first day, he followed her, head-bumping and weaving through her legs. But it wasn’t until it was time for bed that she realized just how attached he had become.
When Sarah settled in for the night, she realized Jamie wouldn’t sleep unless she was holding his paw or tail.
“If I let go he wakes up, meows, and claws my hand back to him.”
“I think we’ve bonded already.”
Although Sarah had no intentions of adopting a senior cat that day, she’s forever grateful Jamie is a part of her life.
“I knew he’d rescue me from feeling alone, and I’d do the same for him.”
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