Pet Type and Name:
Q: How did you meet him/her?
My neighbor was in the Army and got Lemew as a kitten for his daughters that visited from out of state occasionally. His career took him away from home a lot, and he needed someone to watch Lemew. I gladly volunteered and fell in love with Lemew. Years later, when my neighbor got the word that he was being transferred, he asked me if I wanted Lemew because he could not take him along. I said no, that I did not want that responsibility. He assured me that his sister in New York would take him then. I felt terrible knowing I would never see Lemew again, but I still didn’t want to be his new mommy.
On the day my neighbor moved, I was in my cellar doing laundry, just staring at the water rising up in the washer, and thinking about never seeing Lemew again. Then this weird feeling came over me, and something told me to look outside. I open the door, and there is Lemew sitting and staring at me. I opened the door wider, and he walked right in and owned the place. He had spent time at my house when I watched him, so he was familiar with the surroundings already. I couldn’t believe my neighbor had just opened the door and let the cat out, since he always was an indoor cat. But he knew that Lemew would come straight to me and that I wouldn’t turn him away. He knew that deep down I really wanted Lemew. Those first few days were such an adjustment. I found myself taking the long way home and staying out so I didn’t have to go home and be so responsible. And then one day without me even noticing how it happened, I couldn’t get enough of the little guy. Our story was fate. Lemew lived to be 17 years old, living with me for the last 10 years of his life.
Q: Do you talk to your pet? If so, what do you talk about? What does he/she say back?
I would always ask him if he was hungry. Boy, he knew exactly what that meant and answered “yes” every time.
Q: Imagine your pet as a human? What does he/she do for a living? What is his/her personality like?
I think he definitely would have been a bouncer. He did end up being an outdoor cat on a long leash in the yard. He loved being outside. He would yell at me sometimes at 3 a.m. to let him out on that leash. He patrolled the perimeter like a guard. No insect, bird, or any other animal got anywhere near his yard. Even later in his life, he caught birds, while on his leash and totally blind.
Q: Is there a life lesson that you have learned from your pet?
Be ferocious until the end.
Q: To you, what does it mean to be a responsible pet owner?
To provide a healthy, safe, and fun environment.
Q: How has your pet changed your life?
After Lemew passed, I knew I would always be a cat person and will always have a cat around. Maybe someday even two. Did I say that?
Q: Share a local resource for pets of any type that more people should utilize.
Don’t believe everything on the internet. Trust your vet instead.
Q: Is there anything else you would like to share?
I lost Lemew eight years ago this week. Our current kitty, Harley[/caption]Bill Clinton was in town for a democratic rally and was actually at a house at the end of our block. There was so much commotion in the neighborhood. Secret Service was everywhere, sirens sounding, etc. Lemew was already in poor health by that time and had several strokes, but the big one came the day of that rally. Telling everyone my cat died because of Bill Clinton usually grabs their attention and makes an interesting story. I haven’t thought about that day in long time. Writing about it now brings it all back, and it isn’t any easier. Getting a new, lovable little girl cat really helped, though.
Thank you, Mary, for sharing the story of your journey with Lemew with us.
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