I don't think I ever told you the story of Kouros.
Carl and I decided we wanted a pet. We've both always been cat people, but several of our best friends are allergic to kitties. We finally decided, "Screw our friends! We want a cat!" We thought we would get a light-colored female, because on average, they tend to be less allergenic. We'd also wait until after we went home for Christmas. This was immediately after Thanksgiving in 2004.
The next day, I told my coworker Jenn that we had decided we were going to get a cat, and two days later she came in from getting her car fixed and summoned me to the headhouse. There was the scruffiest, saddest, mangiest kitten I'd ever seen. And he immediately scampered up to me and let me hold him. His eyes were all crusty, he didn't smell good, he had fleas, his breathing was a little wheezy... and it was too late. I was in love. It was a black male, and it was only December 3rd, and Carl reminded me of all of our previous decisions. But you don't ignore something like that, do you- 2 days after you decide to get a cat, a little lover of a kitten just falls into your lap?
Jenn said at the garage they had a new little black kitten. They said she was one of a litter that a stray had left behind the garage. They had taken the two sickliest in to the vet. One had to be put down, but this one, Sid, was going to make it and live in the garage because all the big burly mechanics were in love with her. They told Jenn that there were still two left, but they couldn't catch them. She went out to see them, and there was my Kouros, gnawing on a dried out turkey skeleton. And his last littermate was nearby, but had died. He wouldn't let the garage guys catch him, but he ran straight up to Jenn. Jenn volunteered with the SPCA and has rescued strays all her life. I think Kouros knew she was a friend. She said, "If you really want to save a life, this is it. He wouldn't make it through the weekend outside."
I took my boy to the vet the next day. He only weighed 3 pounds. Dr. Bob said he was a dead ringer for Feline Leukemia, with his runny eyes, and his respiratory problems. It was so cute- everyone in the office was so happy when the test came out negative! They were all rooting for him. Dr. Bob said, "Well, kitty, I guess you found yourself a sucker!"
So Kouros was flea dipped, given antibiotics, given an eye cream for conjunctivitis, and wormed. Did I mention his poor little belly was completely swollen with worms? He looked pregnant. I took him home, draped a sheet over my lap and brushed all the dead fleas out of his coat. He laid there, purring and looking at me like he had never been so in love. He was obsessed with grooming after that. I've never seen a cat bathe so much, and he's never stopped the meticulous cleaning. Later that night, Carl and I tried several names out on him, but none seemed to fit. I said, "He's just such a little boy, none of the names work!" And Carl came up with Kouros.
Over the next month or two, he got healthy enough to get his vaccinations. He didn't completely get over the worms, unfortunately, until May. MAY! He was wormed probably 5 times. He ended up with pneumonia that month, and with his short stay in the clinic, we finally saw the end of the worms. He's been totally healthy every since.
And he's become a fat, spoiled cat. At his vet appointment in January, he weighed 14 pounds. Last year, for the first time, he decided he may be interested in going outside. Before that, he never wanted to go out. He seemed completely happy to be inside, warm and clean. With his immune system, though, he's got to be an indoor cat.
He still likes to be in all those places he shouldn't.