Sunday a week ago we went Lollypop Farm to see if the cute little dog Rachel saw the day before was still there and to have a peek at the cats. The dog had been adopted and none of the other dogs really appealed and so we checked out the cat section. At first we saw one cat we liked, Jasmine, but in the visitor room where we got to spend a little time with her it didn’t click and Rachel was still very disappointed about the dog being gone. We looked around a little more and saw Cauliou, a large 9 year old male, and Bert, a small 10 month old male with some eye problems. We liked them both very much and so we went home with both.
On the drive home Bert, already renamed to Onno Junior, didn’t like the carton box very much and, small as he is, managed to break out in 5 minutes. He got to ride the rest of the trip home in Rachel’s lap. At home we put Cauliou, also renamed but to Clovis, in my office and Onno Junior in Rachel’s office. Onno Junior settled very quickly and was exploring, touching, smelling everything in sight. Clovis was a bit more intimidated by the change in surroundings and hid in my bookcase. But after a while he relaxed a little and showed to be the love bug Lollypop Farm had advertised him to be.
Unfortunately I had to go to California for business early Monday morning. Rachel had to manage the acclimatization of the cats by herself. Onno Jr also needed eye drops three times a day. Things between our cats and Onno Jr seemed to be going quite well. Less so with Clovis. On short exploratory trips outside my office he was still scared and TickTock was terrified of him, hiding away in the closet. Clovis and TickTock are both big males but TickTock was declawed by the previous owner and clearly felt defenseless against this new arrival. This didn’t improve and so we decided Thursday that Clovis needed to be returned. Very sad, as according to Lollypop Farm Clovis was accustomed to other cats but this didn’t turn out to be so.
On Friday morning Rachel sent me an email: “Please call me when you can.” I did when I got the email. Rachel had taken Onno Jr to our vet and our cat doctor was very certain that he had feline leukemia. They would test again but were 99% certain. Obviously Rachel was shocked and in tears. Lollypop Farm’s paperwork said they had tested and found Onno Jr to be negative. In a few days we’ll know the outcome of the new test but the prediction is not good. We are keeping Onno Jr separate from Squeak, TickTock and Cleo. If the test comes back positive we’ll have to put Onno Jr to sleep and the other three cats will need to be tested to make sure they were not infected. Cleo and Squeak haven’t had any interaction with Onno Jr, TickTock a little before Rachel visited our doctor on Friday.
It is heartbreaking. He is such a friendly, energetic, curious little cat. We would so love to have him in the family for many years. This afternoon he stayed with me in my office. I took a handful of pictures which are up in the gallery.