“For me, life without a cat or two is empty,” explains Janice. “When I saw Brother’s photo online and looked into his green eyes, I knew instantly that he was a dignified, wise, old soul whom I needed to adopt.
“He was meant to be a birthday present for my dad, and when my mom and I arrived at Furry Friends, we were given an extensive tour and met every cat available and then some. We wanted Brother and it seemed like forever before we finally met him. He was sleeping in his enclosed bed up high on a shelf, and I admit I was taken aback by his hanging belly! But I figured I’d whip him into shape and get him on a weight loss diet of exercise, play, love and low stress.
“And what a perfect choice he was! We’re so thankful for him. He’s the sweetest guy and so well mannered that he didn’t make a sound in the car from his cat carrier on the way home. He adjusted very quickly, although he was shy at first and hid in my closet. But he actually came out to the living room and kitchen while we were eating my dad’s birthday dinner. He slept with me that first night and continues to do so. He purrs, cuddles, lies in the crook of my arm and has even made it up on my pillow above my head.
“Actually, he’s attached to my hip! He even comes into the bathroom with me or sits outside the door. He’s a lover boy and so well behaved. He even goes to the bathroom outside in our fenced backyard whenever he gets the opportunity, leaving his litter box almost unused. My mom often quips, ‘It’s a good thing you don’t have children,’ because I’m always saying, ‘look how cute he is’ or ‘aren’t his striped markings beautiful?’ or ‘feel how soft he is’ or ‘look how fastidiously clean he keeps himself’ or ‘his long legs are so elegant.’ It’s rather ridiculous how smitten I am with Brother!
“He’s quite an athlete. His jumping abilities are astounding and I wish I could create a circuit training course for him because I’m sure he’s a gold medallist. Not a fan of wet food, he prefers fowl to fish, and is slowly losing weight, returning to a trimmer physique. He likes to play especially at night when it’s time for bed because he sleeps all day on my bed — his favorite spot — and is especially excited when my down sleeping bag is available to him.
“For awhile we thought we might change his name to Winston in honor of the talented Michigan State University basketball player, Cassius Winston. Then after overhearing the words of the hymn, ‘Oh Brother Man, fold to thy heart, thy Brother” coming from the TV where my mom was watching a Shirley Temple classic movie, it felt to me like a direct message from the heavens.
“And so, his name evolved into a royal knighting of sorts. Currently, its Brother Man, Sir Winston and Hans-Leo. I also call him Badda-Boo, Boo, Mr. Magoo McGee and Da-guy – the endearing names I’ve used with previous cats to make them feel extra special. Brother has certainly made our house a home and we are happy to have him as our furry companion — our dear, sweet, precious Brother!”
Furry Friends Fur-Ever Stories are compiled and written by Nomi Berger who is the bestselling author of seven novels, one work of non-fiction, two volumes of poetry, and hundreds of articles. She is a volunteer writer for Furry Friends in Vancouver, WA and also volunteers her writing skills to animal rescue groups in Canada and the USA. She lives with her adopted Maltese named Mini.