I’ve had cats most of my life, and found out about Ragdolls about 15 years ago. When I was looking to adopt a kitty after the death of my last pet, I wanted a Ragdoll. Since I prefer to give homes to those kitties that need it, I went looking for a Ragdoll rescue. After scouring shelters, ads, and the internet for months, a friend discovered a shelter about 40 miles away that was listing a Ragdoll, and off we went. At the shelter, we saw more than 60 cats—including the advertised ragdoll—but none of them were “speaking” to my heart. Mean time, the administrator of the shelter who was taking us around kept asking me a lot of questions. Finally, she said that she wanted to show me one final cat that she kept separate in the office because she had been declawed (awful—that’s another story). When I saw the kitty she had in mind, it was intense love at first sight. She was a glorious mitted sealpoint Ragdoll with a blaze. The administrator said that Annie had been at the shelter for almost five months, and she had been carefully searching for the right person to give her a forever home. I realized that all her questions had been for a purpose, and I had passed the test!
We have had Annie now for three and a half years. The private shelter from which we adopted her had rescued her from a county pound and saved her life. They did not know where Annie came from nor her precise age, but at the time of my adoption the shelter’s vet was guessing that she was about three years old, which makes her over six years old now. To say that Annie is special and incomparable does not do her justice. Her character is even more beautiful than her stunning looks. She is gentle, smart, loving, enjoys being brushed, and has the softest and longest fur and the most amazing sapphire blue eyes. And did we say that she is a big girl? She weighs about 18 lbs. She refuses to eat wet food; so I feed her grain free, human grade dry food. She is also fastidious, which requires that I clean the box 3-4 times a day!
Early on, we discovered that Annie comes when one whistles, and she has an abundance of “doglike” behaviors—over and above other ragdolls—and obeys some commands. We asked about these behavioral traits to couple of cat experts, and the consensus was that Annie may have been raised and trained as a cat actor, possibly declawed for liability reasons, and when her acting life was over, the production company and/or her handlers may have turned her in to the pound. Annie loves being in the same room as her humans, but avoids sitting on laps at all cost. At first, she was a bit reticent about human contact, but now loves being petted and sometimes will sit next to her humans. Although there is a basket full of toys available to her, she gets bored quickly with them, but loves boxes and will jump into one whenever available, even though she otherwise dislikes confined spaces. She likes to play through the stair banister slats; making us think that she may have been caged, and learned to play through the cage wires. Like many Ragdolls, she sleeps akimbo, with her mittens pointed up and her beautiful white belly exposed. Annie is the feline love of our lives, and we consider ourselves very fortunate to be her humans. If only she could live forever…
And lest I did not mention, almost a year ago, we adopted a companion for our beloved Annie: our beautiful and mischievous cream bicolor Ragdoll boy, George—whom we also love dearly. His story on another day!