A Chance for Chocolate Chip

Let me introduce you to Chocolate Chip, or Chip for short.  He is the most gorgeous and loveable cat I’ve ever met.

He just showed up several weeks ago in our backyard.  I kept seeing him around and figured someone must have lost him or he wandered away from home as some male cats tend to do.  So I kept my eyes open and found a poster for a missing black cat in my neighborhood.  I telephoned the woman and she came down to get him but it turned out that he was not her cat because her cat had double paws.  So I felt terrible for the woman because I must have gotten her hopes up but that I had not found HER cat. Then I felt terrible for Chip that I had not found his home.  I asked her if she would want him but she declined.  I think she was still holding out hope that her cat would show up.  I can’t blame her so I did not press.  As for Chip, I noticed he was thin and did not have a collar and seemed to be under my porch all the time.  He would wait there for me until he heard me come out in the morning with my coffee and immediately jump into my lap.  When I was done with my coffee, he would do acrobats to try and stay in my lap while I tried to stand.  Then he would swat my legs for leaving him  – he never used claws though.  He was just always there.  Every time I went outside, he’d come running to me from under the porch to pet him.  So I finally started feeding him last week.

You’ve never seen such a grateful animal.  One time, he spilled his food bowl outside.  It was my own fault because I put it too close to an edge.  But I picked through all the grass to get every morsel so the ants wouldn’t feast on it.  Well, he could not stand the fact that I was right there but was not paying him any attention.  So, he jumped on my back as I was bent over and curled up in a ball and started purring away in my ear.  Well.  It is so hard to resist his charms.  Then I started to worry about him at night.  He is black and hard to see at night so he might be an easier target for cars.  Also, bigger animals like skunks, raccoons and oppossums and who knows what else go through our yard at night.  So we started to let him come onto our three season porch at night where we could keep our cats in the house, away from him.  We did not want them to come face to face since we didn’t know his health history and figured he probably had at least fleas from being outside.  In the meantime, I put up posters with his photos, posted on facebook, and alerted the animal control officer in town about him in case anyone reported a missing pet.  And I put a flea collar on him with my phone number written in permanent marker so that if he did have a home and go to it, his owners could call me so I wouldn’t worry.  We never heard anything so we decided we would get him checked out at the vet to make him more attractive to a prospective new owner or ourselves.

It was at that first vet appointment that we found out he has FIV.  This is the feline equivalent of the Human Immunodeficiency Virus which leads to feline AIDs just as it does in humans.  The feline version is not transmittable to humans.  But it does mean that he will be more susceptible to gum disease and certain cancers and that his immune system is compromised.  The vet told us he could live a relatively long life if kept indoors and away from illnesses that his body would not be able to fight.  She also did a complete blood workup on him. Right now he is in great shape – white cell count is good, liver and kidney function normal.  But having the baseline test is good so we can compare it in the future if he starts to show symptoms.  We are treating him for fleas and ticks and he got his first two vaccinations. He is due for another in a week and will also be neutered.   He is getting to be an expensive little cat.  But we still think it is the best way to go if we want to try to integrate him into our home with our existing cats.  And if that doesn’t work, he will hopefully be in a better position to be adopted by someone else.  But my thinking at this time is that I have gum disease and I am a cancer survivor and my hubby didn’t get rid of ME.  So I want to do everything we can to try and give this guy as long and happy a life as we can.  Plus, we are fortunate enough that our home allows us to zone off several different areas and configurations to keep the cats separate if we have to.

So I decided that in my Mad Crochet Lab, in conjunction with my crazy crochet challenge over the next year, that I will offer some of my patterns for sale.  There will be plenty of free ones too but the ones for sale will help benefit Chip and his medical costs.  We never intended to have three cats.  But I feel a responsibility to him since he trusted me.  Chip even lets me touch his belly and his paws, which my existing cats never allow me to.  And I feel that a pet is a commitment, not something to be lightly tossed aside because he or she may not be perfect.  He is a living creature and deserves a good life.  And regardless of all that, I have fallen in love with him.  So there’s that.  Welcome home, Chip.  I hope you stay a looooooong time.




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10 thoughts on “A Chance for Chocolate Chip

  1. Aw, what a pretty kitty! 🙂

    Thank you, DL! I think he is too. I also found out that black kitties are harder to get adopted from shelters. I guess some people are still superstitious or something. I think that is crazy.

  2. “like” 🙂 You’re such a nice lady. Chip is a lucky fella.

    Aw, thanks Peter! I just think he is so loveable and affectionate that now I can’t stand the thought of him not having a good home or spending a lot of time in a shelter.

  3. Chocolate Chip(I love that name!) is very lucky to have found you. He is a beautiful kitty! I would have kept him too, I have a super duper soft spot for cats.

    Heehee – thanks about his name. My other two are named Toast and Jam so I had to give him a food name. And yeah, I’m a dope for cats too! LOL

    • My cats name is Lala. I named her Bella, but Lala is more fun to say or sing…I sing her name a lot and she answers me. Crazy huh! She likes it when I sing to her…

      I think both Bella and Lala are cute names! And I believe it that she likes your singing. I had a cat who loved it too (she must have been tone deaf to like MY singing) but I think somehow it comforted her. She got hit by a car and as I was taking her to the emergency room, she actually purred when I sang, even though she had to have been in a great deal of pain. Her leg was quite messed up and ended up having to be amputated. She ended up doing pretty well though. But it just goes to show they all have their own strange little purrsonalities, right? 😉

  4. Oh, he is so cute! And he is very lucky to have found you. You are so caring and selfless, taking on another cat with health issues when you already have your own pets. But of course with a big heart like yours, you couldn’t have ignored him. I love his name, too! It suits him 🙂

    Thanks, Hannah! I actually feel kind of selfish now though. Or superior or something. Now that I know about his health and his purrrsonality, I just worry that someone else wouldn’t love him or take as good care of him as I know I would try to. 😉

  5. Writing your number on the flea collar is an awesome idea! I’m thinking his previous owners abandoned him because they found out about the disease and didn’t wanna’ put up the costs to helping him.

    This was such a feel good post! I love stories about abandoned pets getting a loving home.

    I’ll admit, that I probably would do the same thing if I could afford it and wish I could afford it because I’ve seen so many posters up in the mailbox area with people needing to give their pets away. The animal lover in me says call!! CALL! CALL!, but my reasoning mind (Damn stupid Brain!) says I can’t.

    Good for you Teeni!

    Thanks, Mac! You know, I KNOW you would if you were in a position to take in more cats and give them a good home and that was one of the reasons I’ve always liked you. But don’t let that go to your head or anything. I am still prepared to tease you at a moment’s notice when you need it! 😉

  6. I think that you and Chip were meant to be and using the Mad Crochet Lab to help raise money for his vet bills is the most excellent idea ever. You really are one of THE most creative people I’ve ever known. Seems like a little match made in heaven; how neat that he trusts you so much! Truly, it was meant to be Teeni! AND, I hope and pray that Chip lives a long and healthy life ?

    Aww, thank you, Annebella! You make me feel so good about myself. It isn’t always easy for me to be creative but I do love it and fortunately my blog and obstacles in life have both made me try and always look at things in different ways. That definitely helps in the process. And I totally agree with you, it was meant to be that Chip would come into my life. I think he is going to help ease some of my feeling of loss since I can’t have children. I can just smother him with all my mothering instinct and he seems to love it and never get enough! LOL. Thanks for your hopes and prayers too! <3

  7. What a great story and what a wonderful ending. I have a black cat, Yoda, who is 13 years old. My son brought him home one day when he was 5 weeks old and we fell in love with him.
    Chocolate chip must think he is heaven now that he is part of your family. He is a very lucky kitty to have found you.

    Hi Joan! So good to see you! Oh, I remember you talking about Yoda before and I think you may have posted pictures. Black cats are so pretty! Thank you for the kind words. I look forward to when you will have more time to blog again because I know you are busy. But what you are doing now is important and is a labor of love, so I totally understand. <3

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