I have an addiction to felines

I have an addiction to felines

My name is Chantal. I live in a small apartment and I’m addicted to cats. Here’s my story.

July 11, 2019 By Chantal Tellier

I never thought that one day I’d have 5 cats. I’m more of an exclusive person. Helping to save cats in need? Yes. Having them all live in my apartment? No, thanks. Besides, I already had 2 cats, Salem and Artémis, and I was overwhelmed with guilt towards my first when I took in the second.

Back then, I’d taken time off work to consider the next steps in my career and I had a lot of time on my hands. That’s how I got to know Bakalova, who’d been wandering through my back alley for 3 years. I’d tried, in vain, to let Bakalova come in. And then a good Samaritan caught her and had her sterilized. But she was so wild that her chances of being adopted were next to zero and I couldn’t stand the thought of her spending the winter outside. So, Bakalova came to live in my small apartment. She spent the first 6 months underneath my dresser. I tried to tame her by reading her stories and singing to her. To no avail. I even hired a pet behaviourist to help the cat adapt to my place. Now I can see that I should have been the one getting therapy!

3? Why not 5?

My mixed results with Bakalova didn’t put a dent in my zeal. Next, it was Sherlock’s turn! He was a magnificent tabby who’d camped out on my balcony for several months. I had him neutered and (ta da!) took him home to my foster family. I bought more litterboxes, a second cat tree and stocked up on dry food because I knew that Bakalova and Sherlock would stick around.

Then Bagheera showed up. Despite being the most joyful cat in the world, Bagheera had been abandoned by his owner. I couldn’t resist. It was at that point that my family started to ask if I’d ever be able to control my addictive ways.

As it turns out, the answer is: Yes, I could. On the day that ringworm invited itself into my home. It’s a very contagious condition and one that I didn’t want to share with other cats. Salem died shortly after the ringworm outbreak and, since then, the only addition to the household has been … my boyfriend.

The cats’ best buddy

For my 4 cats, it was love at first sight. My boyfriend and I are so crazy about the cats that we’ve created voices and stories for each one of them. And they “talk” to us every day. Our cats are the soul of the household. They bring out the best in us: our tenderness, our craziness, our sense of wonder. The 4 of them make us laugh so much, I can hardly imagine having just one.

For me, the sight of my cats, tucked up and comfy on our king-sized bed, is worth all the endorphins in the world. By saving these cats, I saved myself.

Photo credit: Personal collection

Photo 1: Bakalova the cat

Photo 2: Bagheera the cat

Photo 3: Artémis the cat and Dominic


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