Normally, when working a TNR program, the “R” stands for “Return”. This means the cat neutered (the “N” or in the case of females, Spayed). They are then returned to where they were trapped (the “T”) if allowed and in a safe location. But for stray and “feral” cats that prefer the indoor life and human interactions, there is no “R” for them. Most are taken into foster care and eventually adopted out into loving homes. Such is the case with Gus.
Gus, a stray male cat with pinchable big cheeks, was trapped at a barn location near Seattle.
After working on a massive project for more than a year, rescuer Ashley Morrison, a.k.a The Youngest Cat Lady, has pulled approximately 50 cats from the location! And as an experienced fosterer, she knows that when you come across a friendly cat from the streets, it’s a miracle. So when Gus was FINALLY trapped, Ashely was shocked that he simply and calmly sat in the trap, happily eating!
But it also means that he may have been dumped by humans. While there is hope there will be a microchip found, the thought of someone discarding a life is heartbreaking. Even more so when you learn that precious life only wants to love.
When we find a sweet, tame cat during a TNR project we always make sure they are not a lost pet. We check for a microchip, check with neighbors, post on local lost and found pets pages and post found paperwork with the local shelter.
Eager to learn more about her new buddy, Ashley scooped him up and welcomed him into foster care under @AshleysKittenAcademy. He immediately let her know that laps were his location of choice. She had no complaints.
After a checkup at the vet, they settled in for the mandatory stray hold before adoption could be an option.
Gus has some wounds from recent fights and slight Upper Respiratory symptoms. Luckily, all of his blood work looked pretty good and we expect some proper nutrition, a warm cozy bed and time to help him heal. If no owner is found after 30 days he will find a new indoor home after he is neutered and healthy.
Gus and his overly round cheeks are now passing the time happily enjoying the indoor life.
For those wondering just how his sweet face became that round, it is common in unneutered males. The buildup of testosterone in the body leads to the puffy cheeks. Although cute as all heck, when trappers see these cheeks on the streets, it’s devastating. Because that means there are likely lots of little ones that call them “daddy”.
No more for Gus though! For now, he is quarantined during the day at Ashley’s home due to his “boys’ not being removed yet. She has other fosters and resident animals throughout her house, so he gets monitored exploration. As well as nail trims…well accepted nail trims too!
Considering he is so excited he begins to drool uncontrollably, she has to wipe up after him anyways!
Although he seems quite content resting atop his castle tree, with the cold wilderness behind him.
Be sure to follow Gus and his cheeks on Ashley’s social media pages. Her dedication to saving these “unwanted” animals is an inspiration. We can’t wait to see who welcomes this former stray cat and his inherent sweetness into their lives!
Photos property of Ashley Morrison