A Letter from Cinderella's Mom

Cinderella

Dear 4Paws,

I am so happy with Cinderella!! (“Cindy”). She is an amazing kitty. When I agreed to foster her, almost a year ago, Pam said that Cindy “needed some work on her self-esteem”. I didn’t understand what Pam meant; however, when I got Cindy home, Cindy immediately hid in my basement, where I rarely saw her, so then I began to understand.

Cindy was soon joined by my second foster, Mr. Mom. She started coming out of hiding to hang out and sleep with him. (First photo) When Mr. Mom was adopted without her, I expressed concern to Barbara that any hope of getting Cindy out of her shell would now be dashed. But Barbara (wisely) replied that sometimes when the more outgoing animal leaves, the more shy animal flourishes. And that’s exactly what happened!

Cindy continued to hang out in the lower level of my house and was reticent about coming upstairs to join Lilly, my dog, and Ama and Mama, my cats. Cindy eventually tried; however, each time, Ama whacked her in the head or chased her into a corner. Cindy eventually mustered the courage to come upstairs to my sunroom, where she found a safe spot on top of a kitty condo. Eventually, she let me pet her and would eat her meals there. She could look out the window at birds and lie in the sunshine. Not a bad gig! But every time Cindy tried to leave the area, Ama whacked her. And then one day, I saw Ama try to corner Cindy. For the first time (hooray!), Cindy didn’t back down. Ama was left with nothing to do except lick her paw and slink away. That did the trick. From that day forward, Cindy no longer paid any attention to Ama. And, now Ama and Cindy sniff each other’s noses and chase each other … in a friendly way.

When Cindy started to venture out of the sunroom, her first encounter was with Lilly. As Lilly stood in the kitchen, Cindy gently “side swiped” her. Lilly didn’t know what to think! What was so wonderfully innocent was that Cindy didn’t know she wasn’t supposed to do something like that. So, Cindy became comfortable in the kitchen, where she began receiving her meals on the counter (because Mama will eat her food …).

Next stop for Cindy? Upstairs! One night, I noticed Cindy under my bed. I didn’t figure it out for awhile – with Ama and Mama sleeping at the bottom of my bed, Cindy wanted to join us but was too afraid. So I set up a kitty bed in a nearby guest room and encouraged Cindy to come in. Sure enough, with encouragement and lots of positive reinforcement, Cindy began sleeping on the bed. But she still seemed to want to be closer to me. One evening, I opened my dresser drawer and Cindy jumped in (second photo). While she hasn’t repeated that location, she did jump on the bed one night … only to be chased off by Ama …

Not to be deterred, Cindy figured out another way to get close to me – on the sofa in the family room! One night, while watching TV, with Mama on my lap and Ama behind my head, Cindy jumped up and gingerly lay down next to me. As soon as Mama left, Cindy moved in and curled up on my lap. Now Cindy spends her evenings in the family room, either on my lap or nearby (third photo), now part of the family, accepted by Lilly (fourth photo), Ama and Mama, one of the herd, majestic and confident, no longer fearful or tentative. Such a successful Four Paws adoption!!!

And even better still, Cindy lets me pick her up, rub her tummy and hold her. She is also an excellent traveler. She walks right into her carrier, doesn’t mind the ride, and settles right into my boyfriend’s house. She is no trouble at all! She uses her scratching post, never scratches the furniture, is a dainty eater, always uses the litter box, greets me at the door, and goes to sleep when I do. The other day, a doorbell rang on TV, and Cindy jumped off the kitchen counter and ran to the door …

Cindy also loves sleeping on a cat bed in front of the heating vent. She also likes chasing little toys. She has the cutest little walk. She has also developed a rather insistent meow when she wants her meals! Because Cindy comes from a feral colony, I feed her on the kitchen counter, away from my other pets. Not ideal, but I don’t want her to be fearful of another animal stealing her food.

Thank you so much for her. I couldn’t be happier with Cindy. As all of my other pets are “special needs”, so it’s a huge relief to have a pet without medical conditions and impairments (what’s a docked tail, in the scheme of things?).