I’d like to introduce you to Winston Bruschi (my husband had to get a football name included). We call him Winston for short. Winston is 12 weeks old [owner submitted this story on Oct 10, 2021] and is a seal point mitted mink with a blaze. We brought him home 3 short weeks ago.
Winston brings so much happiness and laughter to our house with his kitten antics and I’d like to tell you the story of how we came to adopt him!
How to Search Began for a Ragdoll Kitten
My story begins in January of 2021 when my cat of 16 years became extremely sick with kidney disease. He was the first pet I owned as an adult and my first cat (always had dogs growing up). My husband and I kept him as healthy as possible for months but eventually, the illness was too much.
My heart was broken and my home felt empty without his companionship. I quickly knew that another cat was in my future. Not to replace my cat, but to become my next companion. But, I didn’t want just any cat. I wanted a cat that would be affectionate and friendly. One that could be my sidekick throughout my day and my cuddle bug when I’m relaxing.
My family knew how heartbroken I was and tried their best to help. Some family members who own a farm offered me a kitten of my choosing, but that didn’t feel right. I spent days searching through all of the humane society websites that were within reasonable driving distance, but none of those cats felt right either.
Eventually, I turned to google and started researching how to pick the perfect kitten for our family. It was during one of these google searches that I learned about a breed I had never heard of before, Ragdoll cats. The more I read about their personality traits, the more I knew that this was the breed for me.
How to Find a Ragdoll Kitten
The next challenge was to figure out how to find a Ragdoll cat to adopt. There definitely weren’t any at the humane society!
So, I went back to Google and learned that there were a few breeders within driving distance of my home in Southern Ontario. I read through their websites and decided to reach out to one of them, Chatabelles Cattery in Tillsonburg, Ontario. I explained my story to the owner, Rose. I let her know that I thought maybe a ragdoll was for me. She took her time and emailed me information and let me know that she had a few litters that had been born recently.
Over the next several weeks, I emailed Rose anytime I had questions and she always took the time to answer me. During that time, I also started getting my house ready for our new arrival. A few weeks later, Rose emailed me with pictures from one litter in particular letting me know that these kittens were available for adoption. It was then that I laid my eyes on Winston for the first time. I emailed Rose to ask for more information about him and his personality. I spent the next hour refreshing my inbox every 2 minutes, anxious to learn more.
Rose wrote back, “He has the sweetest personality, comes and sits on your lap and he’s very outgoing and loves to run around and play. So he definitely has the looks as well as personality!” I quickly wrote back to let her know that I wanted him!
Waiting for Winston to Come Home
The next few weeks felt like they ticked by slowly but I finally got the email letting me know that he was ready to be picked up. I was thrilled! The following Sunday we drove over an hour to meet Winston for the first time (Covid prevented us from being able to meet him before his “gotcha day”).
I was nervous and excited. What if he didn’t like me?! We arrived at Chatabelles and met Rose. She explained all of the important details we needed to know and then went into her house to get Winston. I couldn’t believe how tiny he was! He was silent on the drive home and when we got home he hid in our shoe bench. I had read that this behaviour was normal so I let him get comfortable in our home.
After a couple of hours, he came to lay beside me and I instantly saw why Ragdolls are called floppy cats! He slept in such an awkward angle, I couldn’t understand how it could be comfortable!
Winston Adjusting to His New Home
Over the next few days, he got more and more comfortable with the house and the noises within it. Now, we start every morning with at least 10-15 minutes of playtime before it’s time to get ready for the day. I work from home and because of this, he has become my sidekick. In the morning I just have to say, “Winston, let’s go to work!” and he runs to join me in the office.
Winston has become a regular during my video calls and my entire company gets a huge kick out of his appearances as he taps my shoulder for some pets or climbs up onto my shoulders for a snuggle. During the day when I’m working, he spends the day with me in my office either on my lap, on my shoulders, or in his cat tree that I set up at the end of my desk.
In the evening, he continues to be my sidekick. I call him and say “let’s go Winston” and he will come running to join me in whatever activity I’m doing ... with only one exception, Winston does not like to work out with me! He prefers to explore the room and find anything that he can get into trouble with instead.
Winston has a “big brother”, Pippin who is a jack russel/cocker spaniel mix (my daughters' dog). At first, they weren’t really interested in interacting but now Winston and his whole 3 pounds of kitten craziness loves to jump on Pippin when he isn’t expecting it. Pippin is very good-natured and lets Winston do whatever he wants.
Sometimes Pippin will try to initiate play but Winston likes to play on his terms only and quickly lets Pippin know that he’s the boss.
This morning he realized that he was finally big enough to climb up onto the side of the bathtub. My husband had just had a shower so the side of the tub was wet, and Winston was NOT a fan of getting his feet wet. He shook his paws frantically, trying to get the water off.
I could go on forever, talking about the funny things he does like playing peek-a-boo with our curtains, or the heart-melting moments like when I wake up in the morning and he is snuggled into my shoulder as he sleeps on my pillow. Instead, I will end it here with this final thought.
If you're on the fence about whether a ragdoll is right for you, know that when you choose a ragdoll you’re in for a companion who loves to be at your side. I for one have no regrets about my decision.
Adopting Winston has been the highlight of my year! Winston doesn’t have a YouTube account (yet) but he does have an Instagram account! If you’d like to watch Winston grow, follow him @meetwinstontheragdoll.