I have had cats pretty much my whole life and am totally comfortable with being labeled a cat lady. A little over a year ago, I lost my most beloved one to cancer. My boyfriend and I were totally devastated and decided to take a break from pets as we were busier than ever working, travelling, and grieving. As time went on, we started missing the day-to-day joys having a cat would bring, like having your own little shadow or being jumped on from under the bed. Needless to say, we were finally ready to add a new addition to our home.
Then suddenly, everything changed. After the pandemic started, our usual lives came to a crashing halt. We've been sheltering-in-place for a few weeks now, and it's felt lonelier than ever not having a pet around — we decided it was finally time again.
The journey of pet adoption during a lockdown has been challenging yet highlights our ability to give animals homes.
The journey of pet adoption during a lockdown has been challenging yet highlights our ability to give animals homes. Luckily, at first, a lot of animal shelters and adoption organisations were offering "social-distancing adoptions" with video-call interviews and animal drop-offs. I went through the interview process with quite a few cats, but we ended up finding a kitten on Craigslist who needed a family to look after him. The process was similar, where we talked on the phone and she ended up dropping him off in a carrier, so our social interactions were very limited.
We adopted a 6-week-old orange tabby kitten, now named Leo, who was in need of a home after being separated from his mother; the foster home couldn't handle any more kittens. He needs around-the-clock care, plus an abundance of love and attention. Ultimately, it's made our time at home so much fun.
We adopted a 6-week-old orange tabby kitten, now named Leo, who was in need of a home after being separated from his mother; the foster home couldn't handle any more kittens.
This wasn't just something we would do for a month or so before returning to normal life. My boyfriend works from home regularly, and when eventually I go back to the office, he'll be here with him. My parents live close by, so when we return to travelling, they've already excitedly promised to care for Leo.
So, if you're thinking about adopting during this time, which you should because so many animals are in need of homes, make sure it's something you want for the long-term. Think through the details. One of my last cats lived for 22 years, so I went into this decision knowing it's a lifetime commitment for this animal. The joy Leo brings us daily has kept us happy and upbeat and helped create a daily routine that doesn't feel like we're stuck being secluded. Most of all, it feels good giving an animal a home.