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Here's how I got my Phantom. It started with this facebook message (using smiles for names other than mine to protect privacy).
Beth (ME) FB sent me the written message of the instant message you sen me this morning about Apache. They have not called the shelter. I gave :kittyturn their phone numer and she is going to call them and tell them to come and get the cat. She is not doing well, has not eaten a bite since we got her and is hiding in the back of her cage. She appears to half ferral and is scared to death. We have not been able to get near her and of course she is too terrified for us to even think about testing her. We close at 3:30 pm today and will not open until Tusday. They need to come get her today.
Like · · September 10, 2011 at 11:58am

Betheny Laubenthal Calling them right now. If I cannot get a hold of them, I'll come and get her myself.
September 10, 2011 at 12:12pm · Like

Calling the people who dropped Apache (now Phantom) off.
Me: "You guys need to come get her. She's not doing too well."
:cat: "Call them back and have them put her down. She did not eat for us. She's sick. Have her put down."
Me: "Not a chance. No way. I'll go and get her myself."

I grab my purse, race down a long road. Speed limit is 55 miles per hour. I'm doing 70. The shelter is an hour away. I get this gut feeling that I'm going to be late for work, but I don't care.

I get to the shelter. :kittyturn tells me that :cat: called and told me to bring the cat directly back to their house.
Me: "Fine. However, since she is scared, let me handle her. I'm really good at that. Just hold my cat carrier open so that I can put her in there."

They take me back to where they keep the new cats until they pass medical. The cat is shivering in her litter box. Scared to death. I pick her up. She's shaking. She curls up into my neck and meows just a single meow. My heart melts. I've got to have this cat. Husband will not be happy, but I have to have her. I just have to make him fall in love with her.

I drive to :cat: 's house. Leave the cat in my car.
:cat: "Look, you've got to take her to the vet and have her put down. She's sick."
Me: "I don't think so. I just think she does not like kibble. Plus, you had her when she had her kittens. Her kittens are healthy. If she was sick, her kittens would be dead by now. They're not."
:cat: "Fine. Just keep her away from your other two cats."
Me: "That was my plan. In a couple of weeks, I'll take her to the vet. But my theory is that she wants meat. You said that she was feral. Feral cats eat and catch their meals-uncooked. Raw."
:cat: "Makes sense. Well, let me know if you cannot keep her and what the vet says."
Me: "Will do. I'll tell my husband that we're only fostering her, but in reality, I'll just make up excuses why we should keep her."
:cat: **Laughs**
I get her home, after stopping at the grocery store for canned food, thinking that there is no way I'm going to get this cat to eat a raw diet right away. My two cats are not happy. I quickly fill up a litter box with litter, give her fresh food (and a little bit of raw chicken breast) and water. Lock her in the office, go straight to work, forgetting I had absolutely nothing to eat. The manager on duty gives me permission to have a small snack on the sales floor after rolling his eyes at me.

I get home. The husband is on the floor, meowing at her. Husband: "We're only fostering her. I'll put out an advertisement on facebook for a new home."
Me: "Let's wait on it for a bit. Let's socialize her and get her to gain some weight."
Husband: "Fine, but after that, she's going." **I roll my eyes**
We take this photo of her that night:

I make arrangements to get rid of my two beautiful russian tortoises, who I love dearly. But, with Phantom being semi feral, I could not risk it. Plus, Patches, my other cat, was being too rough with her play with them. They get adopted out right away. The husband is pleased.

The second day we have her, I give her a pound of food. There's a bit of hissing and growling from her. I tell her to knock it off. She eats a whole pound of food-raw, that day. The average house cat eats between 1/4 and 1/3 pound of food a day. Third day, I stuff a cornish game hen with organ meat. She polishes all of it off except for the back.

Fourth day, she escapes the office. Hides underneath the bed. Comes out. Starts socializing with the husband and I. Becoming very affectionate. I come home one night to my husband laying on the floor, meowing back and forth to Phantom. I look at him, "So, are we keeping her?" Him: *Big sigh* "I guess so. You got rid of Boris and Sonya. She's so cute. So loveable. Plus, who else would you know who would feed her a raw diet?"

Today, she looks like this:
Pictures by Betheny_Laubenthal - Photobucket
Her name went from Apache to Phantom the Klingon (Phantom or Phan for short) and she is the love of our lives. The tortoises got replaced with 7 fish.

Found out that Phantom is Mooch's great niece. Mooch's sister is Socks. Lil' Socks is Socks' daughter and Phantom is Lil' Sock's daughter.

Got Mooch when she was 3 weeks old. Orphaned. I was 17 at the time. Walked over to the litter. Was trying to get mom to come back to take care of the kittens. Mooch crawled up my arms and fell to sleep. That was 9 and a half years ago.

Patches-we moved into an apartment building. Just Mooch, the husband and I. Mooch became depressed since she had no buddies to play with. It was a week before Thanksgiving. The husband said we could get another cat after the holidays. A week after Thanksgiving, I went to a pet store for toys for Mooch. Saw this tabby on white kitten with "that" look in her eye. Inquired about her. Told the pet store owner that I would have to talk to my husband. The husband told me to wait until after Christmas.

The next day, I was off from work. He had to work. I drove to the pet store. Bought Patches. Drove to where the husband was working. Brought him to my car.
Husband: "You didn't..."
Me: "Yes I did."
Husband: ((Making cooing voices at Patches)) "I told you to wait until after the holidays."
Me: "Well, labor day, Halloween and Thanksgiving passed. You did not specify which holidays."
Husband: *Slaps himself in the face and starts laughing*

So, that's how I got my girls.
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