My name is Oscar. I’m a cat, a big, very old cat. I’ve had quite a life.
It all started under a shed. There was me, my mother, three brothers and sisters. I was special,
orange and yellow with green eyes. And I was smart.
I was the first to leave my mother’s side and set out on my own to explore my new world..
It was big and wonderful and a little scary.
I was a very brave and curious kitten. There was so much to see, smell and explore. Aha the world!
One day while chasing a very elusive butterfly, I heard sounds. Sound I’d never heard before.
Being very young and curious, I crept nearer to the sound.
There in the grass, laughing and singing, were the strangest creatures I’d ever seen.
They were amazing. I crept closer until one the creatures saw me. Oops!
“Oh look,” It said.. “A kitten. Here, kitty, kitty.”
No, I thought, they might eat me. I ran away! However, the next day I found myself creeping up to them again. Well, the rest is history, as they say. I became “Leo”. I went to live with them in a nice white house. I slept with the little one and sat in the big ones laps and purred. I grew up.
One day they loaded me up in a carrier. I didn’t like it and I cried and cried. I tried to say no, no, I don’t want to go.
They were upset, I’d been clawing the furniture! Oops! I didn’t understand that I shouldn’t have been doing that. So I paid the price. I was declawed!
It wasn’t too big of a handicap indoors, since I didn’t need to defend myself and there were no trees. The only dogs I saw were out of my safe, little world. And after a while I forgot about it.
My life was good!
I loved my family and they seemed to love me. Those were good days and I grew up there with my family.
I’d lay in my window and watch the world go by. But I was safe, happy and not so curious as I grew older.2
Then one day something went wrong. Everyone was different. Things had changed.
They didn’t laugh or sit or pet me. The big one I thought of as Mom, cried a lot. The one I thought of as Dad , I never saw again. The little one seemed mad and snapped at me and ran me off when I’d try to get her attention. I don’t know what I did. I loved them so and didn’t mean to make them mad. I just didn’t understand.
Then one day some men came with boxes and I was put out with a bowl of food.
And my family went away. I never saw them again.
I waited. I thought surely they would get over being mad and come back for me. I was part of the family. How could they leave me? I was Leo.
Finally after the food was gone and I was really hungry, I had to leave. But I stayed in the neighborhood, checking on the house every now and again, as the weeds grew and it became more run down. I lived off of garbage and handouts. I couldn’t catch birds or climb trees since my claws were gone. It was a hard life. People would chase me and yell things at me. What had I done? What could have I done?
One day some men with machines came and they pushed the house down. The house I had. thought of as my home!
This was awful! How would my family ever find me now?
There was a good side. Some new men showed up! They began building a new house! They were kind. They shared their lunches. They gave me a new name, “Yellow Kitty”.
I wondered where did my family go? Did they remember me?
These weren’t such bad days, the men called me a mascot. They brought me food. They scratched my head.. The nights were bad, sometimes it was cold, but I found places to curl up and sleep. Then one day the men packed up their equipment and tools and left! All but one. He was the kindest. He always remembered me. And when he gathered up his tools, he gathered me up too. He took me home with him. I really liked the man. I complained all the way. I was afraid if I left my family would return. They wouldn’t be able to find me!
The kind man lived in a rural area. No more scary cars to deal with. But, the man had a couple of young toms. I was defenseless against them, although I fought valiantly, I never won. No claws! I was getting pretty beat up when, someone new showed up.
They talked to me, then loaded me up again! And off I went. I complained, “No, no, I like this man! I’ve known him a while, he’s kind. I don’t want to go!”
They brought me to a new house. I growled and growled. I tried to tell them I would not be
theirs. They would not be mine. So they named me “Oscar”, something about a grouch. I swatted at them and occasionally I’d bite. Not hard, I just wanted them to know who was boss. Me “Leo”!
In the new place there were other cats. They all had a story of their own. But I didn’t care. I wasn’t staying! First chance I’d show them. I’d leave! I didn’t need them and their love. Love doesn’t last and besides I didn’t trust anyone that much. I didn’t want them to know I was scared.
They kept trying. By the way I do like catnip and kitty food, snacks and goodies!
One day I made a break for it. I’m out of here. I don’t need these people. I didn’t go far.
They hunted and called and hunted.. I laid quiet. I’d show them! Well, morning came and I was cold, hungry and ready to go in.
So I did. They insisted on gushing love all over me. I let them.
I quit growling and started purring. It wasn’t so bad being loved again.
And that’s my story! I’m Oscar, an old yellow cat. And finally I have a family and a home!
(Note: Oscar passed away of old age, shortly after this story was written.)
We recently adopted an older cat. We weren’t sure how old he was. A friend told us about this cat. One day several months ago, we went and brought this cat home. He had been declawed. We named him Oscar. He wasn’t very friendly, at first. He didn’t get along very well with our other cats. However, after a few weeks he seemed to calm down. He let us pick him up without growling. He seemed to fit in. But just as soon as he started adapting, something else happened. He quit cleaning himself. He quit eating. All he wanted to do was lay down outside.
Then one morning we let him out. We never saw him again. He went to die. We didn’t have him long. But we loved him just the same. We will always love and miss Oscar.