Sunday, March 9, 2008

Happy Birthday Pepina!

Yesterday was Pepina's second birthday. We celebrated her first birthday with a cake and family, but this year, we kept it low-key, hahaha! Of course the snowfall would have cancelled anything that we had planned anyway.

We adopted Pepina from our local cat shelter on May 2, 2006. I had been off that entire school year to that point, due to my cancer, but was returning the next day for the final month. (It's a long story, but I had to go back for insurance purposes and to begin accumulating sick days again.)

Anyway, we had talked about adopting a kitten for a while, but no one else knew that it was going to be that day except me. Alex and I had stopped by a local menswear shop to pick up the suit we had purchased for him for our niece's upcoming wedding. As we left the shop, Alex commented that we weren't heading home. All I told him was that I realized that. He had no idea where we were going until I pulled up at the cat shelter.

I knew that they had 3 calico kittens as of the previous weekend, and my only requirement with a kitten was that it was female and a calico. Yes, I know that 99.9% of all calicos are female, but with my luck I would run into that .1% that wasn't!

When we got there, they only had one calico kitten left, and she was as cute as a button. They told me that she was about 10 weeks old, and she really "took" to us, so we adopted her.

On the way home, Alex was so sweet...he sat in the car, holding the box, talking to Pepina. I recall him saying in a soft voice as he petted her, "Hi Pepina...I'm Alex. Let me tell you a little about myself." And he went on.

Here she is at eight weeks old, the day after we adopted her.

When we got home, Ted looked at her, then looked at me. Later on when the kids weren't around he commented that he didn't know I was going to get a kitten that day and was I sure she was healthy?

To say that Ted became attached right away was an understatement. We had her food and litter box set up in the laundry room and put an old baby gate up at the doorway. We didn't want her wandering around the house when we couldn't be right there with her. That first night Ted was so worried about her that he slept on the couch, and got up every hour or so to go check on her. He said that each time he shined the flashlight in the laundry room, she was just sitting there, staring at him.

In the morning I noticed that her one eye was a little swollen and she had a lot of "gunk" in that eye. I went to work, and as soon as I had a free minute, I called the local vet's office and made an appointment for Pepina late that afternoon.

Well...we sure got our eyes opened at that appointment!

First of all, Dr. Dale said that she was only about 8 weeks old, not 10. Secondly, she had a respiratory infection, and needed antibiotics and eye ointment. Thirdly, she had ringworm and we were going to have to give her a bath every two weeks with special shampoo. He said that she wasn't very healthy, and we were not to pick the "crud" off her would come off by itself. She only weighed a little over a pound, but was still cute as could be. She hadn't eaten or gone potty in the 24 hours we had her, so he also gave us some special food for her to try.

We came home with all this stuff, and Alex immediately disappeared into his bedroom. Once we got all settled with Pepina, I made dinner. Ted went to get Alex and he was too upset to even come out to eat. He was really worried about Pepina.

Within the next 24 hours she began to eat, and go potty, and her infection started to improve. By the time we went back to Dr. Dale she had almost doubled her weight and was doing quite well. He told us that he hadn't even been completely sure that she would make it, but was quite impressed with her progress.

She was about 3 months old and had gotten into my closet when I was getting something out. She made herself at home!

Participating in one of her favorite pastimes!

In addition to sleeping on the chair, she likes to sleep on people too!

However, she's not too crazy about getting a bath, and yes, we bathe her every few months.

She just had to show us her climbing skills!
She's enjoying a piece of cake from her first birthday!

Joey loves to hold her...he calls her "Cat"!

Since then she has been such a wonderful addition to our family. After her first weekend with us, I commented that I hadn't laughed so much in years.
She is such a sweetheart!


Paulie said...

Oh! My favorite shot is the one with the ct on the hangers!!!!!!!!!!!!