Ginger Cat Appreciation Day: Meet My Cheeto-Boy

Ginger Cat Appreciation Day -- Cheeto

Today is Ginger Cat Appreciation Day. Some have called me a crazy cat lady due to always having multiple cats in my home. Well, I’ll take it. It ain’t the worst thing I’ve ever been called. LOL

My whole life has been populated by pets, I can’t imagine my life without them. Much the same as my children have been very loved and cherished, so too have my cats and dogs.

And my horses, ducks, and chickens. And the rat my son asked to have after a teacher sent her class pet rats home with a student for the summer and the males breached the divide from their section of the cage to the female side and had a little too much fun. And the fish my daughter was obsessed with for a few years before she moved out on her own. And the hermit crab we brought back from vacation when the kids were younger. And the little aquarium frog my husband and I had when we were first married — many a moon ago.

Since pets’ lifespans are much shorter than human ones, these loveable creatures come, stay a while, and then cross the Rainbow Bridge. I like to think that every pet I’ve ever had the pleasure to share my life with are all together over there, having the time of their afterlives — playing in rays of sunshine, napping on fluffy beds, swimming in cloud-ponds, and generally just getting all the rewards they deserve for all the joy they brought to us during their life times.

My daughter has moved on from fish (too much work for her to keep up with to her satisfaction). But, she is definitely following in my Crazy Cat Lady footsteps with her three little kitty-children that she loves and dotes on. We have a standing agreement that should anything ever happen to either of us, the other will absolutely adopt the other’s pets. It sounds weird to say (or write) that, but it’s important to make arrangements for the important things in life (children, pets, property and assets) in case the worst should happen, right?

Ginger Cat Appreciation Day -- Cheeto

This little guy, Cheeto, gave us quite the scare last year. He wanted to go outside so bad. We live in a semi-rural area and his big sister cats would go out and play in the yard, chasing birds up trees and squirrels into the woods. We decided to start letting him outside, even though I was worried that he might be inclined to wander unlike his sisters who stick near the house pretty well.

The first few forays into the outside world when well enough. Until my worst fear came true and he didn’t come home one afternoon.

What followed were 12 days of hell — posting flyers, visiting nearby houses asking if anyone had seen him, driving the neighborhood with the windows down calling his name, asking for help in neighborhood lost pet groups online, checking – rechecking – and checking again with local vets and pet shelters, leaving one of the litter boxes outside alongside bowls of food and water and one of my shirts draped over a chair on the deck hoping the scent would lure him home.

I went outside at all hours of the day and night calling his name hoping he was wandering around looking for the way back home and wasn’t hurt or dead somewhere.

Finally, after twelve long days and nights, less than 20 minutes after one of my outdoor calling sessions he showed up back at the house. He was missing his collar, much skinnier, afraid and clingy, but with only a small wound on the base of his tail. He ate like there was no tomorrow. And once he settled down a bit, he purred so loudly and cuddled like he thought he’d never see me again. He didn’t even try to go back outside for months.

I was so relieved. And angry — with myself for not getting him microchipped before allowing him to wander outdoors. We did a well-check visit to the vet and got that microchipping issue taken care of immediately after his return. I just felt so bad that he’d been on his own for so long, but a little proud that he had figured out some way to get food and survive and find his way home.

He’s finally started going outdoors again a little bit. And, so far (fingers crossed) he’s stayed close to the house and comes when he’s called. But, he’s still a boy. And cat or no, boys will be boys, so I still worry he might wander off again. I hope not, so I just do what I can and enjoy him, love him, and spoil him rotten for as long as I can — and hope it’s enough to keep him safe in this big old world.

Ginger Cat Appreciation Day -- Cheeto

So, this is my long-winded way of expressing my deep love and appreciation for my little ginger boy, Cheeto. He makes every day better!

Check out my Cheeto Boy in his Unicorn Zoo Snood. He was pretty cute, though not as adorable in it as our Callie Girl was. Zoo Snoods have some pretty awesome hand-knit headwear for cats and dogs.

Tell us all about your favorite ginger-colored feline friend! What is your favorite memory with him or her?

Ginger Cat Appreciation Day

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