Originally Posted: 2007-02-17 16:12 (no longer live)

free: the worst cat

Do you like a challenge? Then take our cat. Please.

I first heard about our cat about 6 months ago, when I had not yet moved to Philadelphia post-graduation as per my long-standing plans with my best friend from high school. My first impression of the cat was my best friend calling me on my cell phone and asking me how you could tell if a kitten was rabid.

My friend had been walking through Clark Park late at night with a friend of hers when a thugged-out man who they took to be a mugger emerged from the bushes. He walked toward them, thrust out his hand and just as they were starting to freak out said with a kind of embarrassed air, "Can you do something with this? I found it sitting in the street and I didn't want to see it get run over but I can't take it with me."

The guy had a tiny little two-week-old kitten in one hand, and my housemate took it home and fed it with a bottle and all that good samaritan stuff.

She called me up a week later asking if I thought it was rabid because, in her words, "It chews on my fingers and falls over sometimes." I told her that in my experience that's how kittens basically spend most of their waking hours and thought she was overreacting.

Well, the kitten wasn't rabid, but neither is he normal. Because he was separated from his mother so early, he's emotionally stunted and doesn't like getting petted and will tolerate it for a bit but then start biting and scratching. The only times I ever hear him purr are when he pretend-nurses on something soft; there's a scarf of mine he particularly enjoys making out with.

Because my housemate didn't knock him around like a mother cat would have when she was nursing him in August he never really learned how to play nice, so when I got there in September, he was this tiny little bouncing ball of teeth and claws and aggression who would only react to attempted discipline with the cat equivalent of "Oh yeah? Oh YEAH?? FUCK YOUUUUUUUU!!" He is just not cowable, as ridiculously outsized as he was and still is. Now he is larger (about 8 pounds, I'd say) and less aggressively hyper but still kind of destructive when he gets bored.

The cat also had a really horrible case of fleas for a while, which took us hundreds of dollars and a lot of sleepless, stare-at-the-ceiling-while-intermittently-slapping-your-arm-in-a-panic nights. He no longer has the fleas, through great effort on our part.

I was not present the first time we took the cat to the vet, but my housemate warned him about the cat's temperament. The vet laughed it off, said he'd seen everything. When we picked the cat up, the same vet brought out the cat all sedated in his kitty carrier, and he looked pretty harried.

"Well," he said, "He's certainly RAMBUNCTIOUS."

Another story: when my friends first came over to meet the kitten, they were so amazed at how "rambunctious" he was that they suggested that he had to be the the result of some sort of bizarre and possibly depraved feral street cat/ocelot sex.

So here's the deal:

My best friend, the one who originally got the cat in the park, just moved out a couple of weeks ago, leaving the cat with my two housemates, who hate the cat with a passion, and me. She can't take him with her where she is now, so we're essentially stuck with this cat. However...

We can't live with this cat anymore. My housemates hate him and always have, and are in fact in favor of just dropping him off at a farm somewhere and letting him live off the land. I have scratches all up and down my forearms all the time from his "playing" and people look at me funny. He appears to give off an extremely potent dander which particularly seems to affect men. I just went to the doctor and she says that I do not in fact have a persistent cold, and that I, along with every man my housemates and I have brought to the house in the past six months, am allergic to the cat. I have never been allergic to a cat in my life, which makes this particularly weird.

So if you like a challenge, or healing troubled cat psyches, then take my cat. In the spirit of full disclosure:

Things which may be off-putting about the cat:

  • He plays rough to the point that my hands and forearms are constantly covered with scratches
  • He doesn't really appreciate being petted other than occasionally being scratched under the chin when he's sleepy
  • He never really learned how to do the mutton-leg form of licking his own butt/genitalia (one leg straight up in the air), and so devised his own method, which is: sit back on his ass like a fat man, spread his legs and wash his junk directly AT you
  • When he wants attention or is bored, he will stare deliberately at you while knocking over things like glasses of water and ashtrays
  • If you have small pets suchas rodetns or fish, he will probably find a way to kill them.
  • He will stare at you intently while you're making out with someone on the couch
  • Gives off enough dander to kill a man (and occasionally a woman)

Things in the cat's favor:

  • He is fixed, fully vaccinated and healthy
  • He never pees or poops outside his box
  • If you have any sort of pests, he will ruthlessly kill them
  • He seems to get on well with the female cat that lives upstairs when they occasionally meet in the foyer
  • He is absolutely fearless, which I find endearing (you can vacuum him and he just sits there and looks at you quizzically)
  • He is really, really cute - to demonstrate this, I have attached three pictures in decreasing order of age-of-cat and these two videos.

I realize that this description of the cat might not be the best way to get someone to adopt him. But I just wanted to have a policy of complete and total transparency about this cat, because... I genuinely think that he could learn how to be a good cat in a house where he's not left alone quite as much as he is in an apartment with two college students who are only home two or three days a week and one 23-year-old with two jobs that keep me out of the house most of the time and exhausted the rest of the time.

I won't take him to a shelter, because he wouldn't ever be adopted with his behavior problems and I know they'd probably just end up putting him down.

So take our cat... please. He comes with litterbox, litter, food bowls, food, a kitty carrier and our eternal gratitude.

post id: 280312344