Trigger warning, this does involve animal death. You’ve been warned.
Losing two of our fur babies in less than a week hurt, but we put all of our grief into taking care of Sirius. He helped soothe the hurt a bit.
That being said, Sirius was a 1 year old husky. What that means is that he was basically a loud, giant, floofy puppy.
He shed so much that I was sweeping up massive amounts of fur everyday, and vacuuming every other day. My allergies went absolutely haywire. He broke out of his kennel multiple times, to the point that we put metal ties around the edges because he broke the zip ties. He escaped out the backyard way more times than I care to count, chewed through a harness, slipped out of harnesses and collars, snuck into a neighbor’s house through her backdoor, and ate a hole through both sides of a couch cushion. He was a bit of (as my neighbor put it) “a menace”. However, we did our best to keep him safe and in our yard. We were willing to forgive the various property damage to our belongings because that comes with the territory of being pet owners.
We were willing to forgive a lot when it came to him…until he did the only thing that we consider unforgivable.
One day when I was driving home from the store, I found a couple of tiny kittens in the road. The third one had already been run over, so there was no way I was leaving them there. We immediately went to Petsmart to grab kitten formula, a small pet carrier, cat litter, a small cat litter box, flea shampoo, a ferret bed, and a rabbit kennel. I estimated they were probably about 3-4 weeks old.
The poor babies were absolutely covered in fleas and very dirty, so even though they were definitely too young for the flea shampoo, I needed to get them cleaned up. After talking to the vet, I switched to using dawn dish soap instead. I don’t know how long they were without their mother because they weren’t quite sure what to do with the kitten bottle nipples, so I put it in some little bowls, and they drank fine from there. I set the kennel up in my room. I put the cat box on one side with the ferret bed hanging above it. Then, I had some blankets set up on the other side of it under the little “loft” it had where we put the formula and water. My neighbor came over with some wet cat food to see if they would eat that as well. They did, so we watered it down with some kitten formula to make sure it was easiest on their little bellies, and to make sure they were getting the nutrients they needed.
Sirius was of course beside himself that there were new little animals in the house, and just wanted to play with them. We slowly got him used to them while we held them, and he was okay. The problem came when we weren’t home.
While I was at work one morning, I got an emergency call saying that one of the girls accidentally dropped a kitten, and Richie needed to bring it to the vet because he was pretty sure it had a seizure and died. I got home to stay with the girls, while Richie brought the little boy kitten (dubbed “Donut”) to the vet. It turns out that he had a virus that commonly affects stray kittens. It had already infected his brain which is why he was so much more lethargic than the other kitten. It’s also why he didn’t do the cat thing and land on his feet when he was so close to the ground because he only fell a foot. One physical tell is how swollen and purple their bellies are, and the vet knew immediately what happened when Richie brought it in. He also insisted on Richie bringing the other kitten (named “Draco”) for a check up to make sure that one didn’t have the same virus.
While checking out Draco, our vet determined that yes, the kitten did have the virus. However, it was nowhere near as prevalent and could be treatable. He also determined that Draco was not a he…he was a she. Oops. I guess Draco is a girl.
When we all got home after Draco’s vet check up, we saw that Sirius had once again broken out of his kennel and had ransacked our room looking for the kittens. The problem is that we didn’t remember if we kept our bedroom door open or closed. Thankfully, no one was in there, so no one was hurt.
A week or so later, we got home from the store to find Sirius had done it again, except little Draco was sleeping in our bed when it had happened.
That was the one line we couldn’t handle being crossed. That night, Richie got in touch with a friend of ours who literally can’t have cats, and they took in Sirius.
They renamed him Cyrus, and he’s doing well over there. They’re much more equipped to handle a dog with that much energy. They have other dogs for him to play with, and they have 1 acre just in their backyard, that’s not even counting the front yard. Now that time has passed, we’ve been over there to visit, and we all enjoyed our time together. The girls constantly talk about how much they miss him, and we do too, but Richie and I have learned our lesson the hard way in what we want in a dog.