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July 10, 2011

Saving Private Bernard

by Julianne Mooney

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It’s not that I don’t like cats, but I prefer dogs. A dog wags his tail when you come home, lounges at your feet adoringly, rolls onto his back so you can rub his tummy and are generally loving companions. So when my boyfriend found a little stray kitten outside his work on Friday I agreed he should take it into his office, mind it for the afternoon and find him a home. Someone always wants a little ball of fur right?

So I surprised myself when I felt somewhat disappointed to see he’d not brought the little thing home with him. Until I saw a random cardboard box in the corner. I was informed the vet had said he may not survive the weekend. Peeking inside I saw a tiny tortoiseshell kitten with wide, terrified eyes. My heart melted and that was that.

We agreed we were just minding him for the weekend, but you can’t let a little kitten sleep in an uncomfortable box now can you? Queue trip to tesco for a fleece lined bed, litter tray, food bowls and of course every kitten needs a toy, even if he’s only tiny and hasn’t enough energy to lift it.

We’ve discovered he likes to be wrapped in a blanket and held. And fed milk by a syringe. He likes privacy whilst sitting in his litter tray, despite my boyfriend insisting on sitting on a stool in the corner watching him. The highlight of the weekend was when he purred for the first time. It was then we knew he’d survive the weekend.

He’s tucked in beside me watching me type with his belly full of kitten food and milk, having been playing with a piece of tissue for ages. I think he wants to stay with us a little longer and it would be unfair to shift him off somewhere else, what with him being so young and weak, right? While he doesn’t wag his tail when he sees us, he does lick our fingers and rolls on his back to have his soft belly rubbed.

We’ve given him a name. Bernard. Don’t ask, it’s a long story, but he seems to like it.

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