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Discussion Starter #1
I haven't been able to visit here for ages since I got a new job that keeps my crazy busy ALL the time. But this week I decided I have to take time for me every now and then to retain my sanity, and what better way to do it than with a visit to the cat forum? Cute kitty pics always cheer me up!

I still have my original two girls, Fern and Fergie, but hubby and I are about to adopt their mother Anissa. We were hoping to wait until we had our basement completely finished, but found out she's getting lonely at the shelter so 'Operation Anissa' only consists of walling off the crawl space so Fergie can't get back there and eat something that might kill her! (For those that don't know her story, she eats anything that fits in her mouth and has had surgery because of it, so we're extremely paranoid about leaving small or stringy things lying out!)

My brother had to put his diabetic cat Phantom to sleep this week. :cry: Poor little guy basically stopped eating two weeks ago, and they couldn't find anything wrong with him despite running every test they could think of. This week he started having trouble just walking in a straight line so they knew it was time. So sad.... he was their baby and I've shared a few tearful phone calls with my brother since it happened as he tries to cope.
 

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Very cute icon kitty
 

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:patback Aw, ((hugs)) for you and your brother.

:love2 Happiness that you, Ferg, Fern and soon their Mother Anissa will be regulars at CF again! What does Anissa look like? (does she look like your twins?)
 

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Hey, we missed you :)!

Good news about momma Anissa! And condolences to your brother and family...so hard....:patback

Glad the job is going well too - you are very lucky!

Fran
 

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Welcome back!

So sorry to hear about Phantom.

I might have missed this in the past, how is it that your girls' mother is available/at a shelter? Do you think they'll remember her?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Anissa and her 5 kittens were rescued in the spring of 2007. The 3 boys were all adopted pretty quickly, but the shelter had a lot of kittens at one time and not enough people adopting. So lucky me, a year later my girls were still there. Anissa has been there the whole time, and we've been talking about adopting her for the last year but couldn't in '09 because of me being out of work.

If this link works here's her petfinder picture: Petfinder Adoptable Cat | Domestic Short Hair - Orange And White | Montgomery, IL | Annissa

I'm not sure how the reunion will go - the girls haven't seen Anissa for three years. All the kittens had to be taken away from her because she was too emaciated to nurse them. I'll be sure to keep you guys posted, but any thoughts on what might happen? She will obviously be brought into the house in a carrier, and we're thinking about letting Fern and Fergie come check her out in the carrier to see what happens.
 

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She's been there all this time? :( That's the one answer I didn't want to hear.

I think it's great you're going to adopt her. She has the sweetest little face.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Well I should add that she's never been kept in a cage. The shelter is run out of homes, so unless the cats are sick or brand new they aren't in cages. Anissa has been one of the basement cats pretty much since she got there, so we're actually wondering if she might get a shade lighter once we bring her home. It's not like the place is dirty and nasty, but it IS an unfinished basement in a very old home so a certain amount of dirt is unavoidable.

There's a window on the stair wall that she hangs out in, and if you walk down and stop in front of her with your back turned she will knead your shoulders.... :cool
 

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She looks so sweet!
IMO, I wouldn't do the carrier intro. That just seems too stressful for adult cats, to me. I have done it with kittens in the carrier so the adult cats could see/smell, but I don't think it is a good thing with adult cats. Choose a safe-room for Anissa's arrival and keep them separated by a door. They can get used to sounds/smells that way and you can do some scent-exchanges, too.

Something I've done that has been very successful is Door-Jamb-Footsie.
With DJF, you open the door with your hand curled around the edge and hold the door closed-to-the-jamb with your hand in between, creating a small crack for nose-sniffs and some footsie. Our cats have *always* expressed interest in sniffing at whoever is on the other side. When hissing decreases and stops, then I will hold the door open a bit wider so they can sniff and make eye-contact, but not wide enough for heads to get through. When hissing decreases and stops then I choose some of my friendliest cats and allow them in to mingle with the new kitty. When that goes well, and DJF has become 'boring' ... then I will allow free-roam access but I will carefully monitor all cats the first few times this is allowed so I can quickly intervene if it appears to be going sour.
I want everything to be positive and if it appears to be heading sour I want to quickly separate before anything negative happens. I also use toys, treats and physical attention as distractions and rewards for being quiet/calm in the presence of new kitties.

In 1996 we took in an adult feral tomcat who had broken his leg. He was the father of our Trio, who were about a year old at the time we brought him in. I can't say they all became One Big Happy Family, but they blended together very well. The Trio always deferred to him respectfully. The Trio remained close (2bros, 1sis) and my bottle-orphan attached himself to the scarred old warrior and the old warrior found his maternal side with the bitty kitten.
Good luck!
 
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