Part of my role as a foster is to observe the cat(s) as much as possible. I like to note everything and use it in their bios to provide as honest a description as possible. I’ve had one of the website posters remove a slightly negative observation from my posting. I really disagree with that. There are ways to soften a negative trait (thanks, Joanna! and that’s why Joanna does ALL my posts) but sometimes one person’s negative is another’s positive. You never know what will appeal to a potential adopter. And adopters aren’t given the cats’ health record before the adoption, so anything ongoing or major should be in their bio — or at least mentioned during their meet & greet which is not possible if it’s at a store and the foster isn’t there.
So I’ve been observing Carson closely. I have a suspicion that something’s wrong. Not anything I can put my finger on, or anything specific, just a feeling. His bio from the original rescue group called him “grumpy”. That’s not what I get from him, at all. Mistrustful, absolutely. Here’s what I told my coordinator:
— he cries a lot; so do Archie and my Murphy, but mostly for attention. Carson doesn’t want attention.
— he seems … not exactly listless but low energy
— the other cats ignore him, even Archie, though Carson hasn’t reacted negatively toward them at all. It unnerves me that Archie doesn’t try to make friends with him considering how determined he was with Benson and with my grumpy boys
— he likes head petting and neck skritches, but really flinches when I touch anywhere else. I’ve only felt one big mat on his spine, but he has at least two bare spots where others were probably cut out. I’ve been no where near his belly!
— his back legs move kind of funny; could be just him, but it’s another thing I’ve noted
— he’s an extremely messy eater when he does eat; tonnes of kibble bits leftover, even though he seems hungry. Even wet food gets tossed around. Not keen on any of the food I’ve offered, though he’s quite happy with Temptations, but he mostly swallows them whole.
I’ve also noticed he happily laps up any liquid food (gravy, water I’ve added to his wet food) but leaves any solids behind. So I’m leaning towards a dental problem.
Thankfully, my coordinator has given the go ahead to take him to vet. As she says, even if only to get the mats out of him. I’m grateful for her trust in my instincts. Like with Archie, I don’t want anything to be wrong, but if there is something, I want it to be fixed! So we’ve got an appointment for tomorrow and we’ll see.