Pansy’s Perfect People!
Working in an animal shelter gives one a front row view of humanity. Animals have a way of shining a spotlight on our human qualities—sometimes our worst, more often our best. Occasionally, we have the pleasure of coming into contact with very special people who, either by nature or by nurture or both, have a natural connection with animals. We refer to these people as “animal people.” Innate respect and a unique sensitivity to the needs of other species is their human-held attitude. They are willing to accept animals for who they are; they put aside their own needs in a desire to connect with and support animals. Cecily and Geoff definitely fall into this group!
When the couple decided to add a third member to their four-legged family, they first considered adopting a companion for their senior dog but then chose to get a second cat instead. When they visited our website, their intent was to adopt a cat who had been at the shelter for a long time. That was Pansy. The small black female had been trapped and brought to the shelter as a kitten. Shy by nature, Pansy had spent the past four years hiding from potential adopters. If 100% of visitors can’t pet a cat, 100% of visitors won’t adopt that cat. Unless you are Geoff and Cecily.
Being whom they are, the couple decided to bring Pansy home and take on the project of building trust. For about a month, they had a second cat in name only. Pansy was MIA. She was in the house but out of sight! Instead of getting frustrated, her people respected Pansy by giving her the time, space, and understanding she needed. Cecily even slept on the floor (cat level) to help build trust.
Eventually, Pansy began to come out of hiding, both physically AND emotionally. Cecily told us, “She really seemed to warm up, giving me aggressive head boops and drooly purrs. Nighttime was our play time, and then our chonk of a cat, Mario, started getting involved. Right off the bat he was very affectionate and pretty obsessed with her.”
Pansy blossomed gradually. Cecily now reports, “She’s a completely different cat. She’s definitely still a bit skittish at times, but everyday she comes out of her shell a little more. She sleeps on top of the bed on the pillows now and doesn’t run away when we come in the room. She welcomes pets and loves ear rubs…She and Mario are best buds. It’s funny because he’s a solid chunk of cat, and she’s the most dainty thing. She shoves her head in his face for him to lick, and he grabs her. They play alllll the time! They sleep together. It’s so heartwarming. I feel so lucky that we got the chance to give her a chance.”
Geoff and Cecily are definitely true “animal people,” which is also evidenced by Geoff’s reaction to an overturned lamp during a rowdy play session between Pansy and Mario. Instead of being angry, he felt happy, knowing his cats were having fun. Their happiness was his happiness! It’s obvious that animals are central to this couple’s life, and their animals can enjoy all the benefits afforded to those fortunate enough to be living with “animal people.”
When Geoff was asked if he had any Pansy photos he was willing to share, he laughed and answered, “Only about 8,000!” A perfect answer that tells all.