Remember Frankie, the 11-year-old cat who was surrendered by his human and looked so sad, only someone with a heart of stone wouldn’t be moved by his predicament?
Frankie Sad Eyes has been living with the good people at Tabby’s Place for the past few months, with the staff attending to a few health and behavioral issues as they look for a proper home for the little guy.
While Frankie may look sad, he’s got the spirit of a little tiger, and he’s discriminating when it comes to making friends with his own kind. Staff got him settled into the spacious Community Room at the shelter and put him on behavior medication, which helped things simmer down.
All was well “until Tabby’s Place committed a serious error, at least as far as Frankie is concerned,” Tabby’s Place staffer Stephanie wrote in a blog post.
That error? Introducing a pair of bonded cats to the Community Room. Frankie didn’t take to Ralph and S’Mores, and “developed a reputation for stalking” the latter kitty, revealing his inner predator.
“Things got so bad one day that a staffer put Frankie in a stroller and took him outside to be near her as she worked so S’Mores could get a break,” Stephanie wrote. “Obviously, this cannot continue. But it is not the first difficult introduction we’ve had, and we’re very lucky in that we have options. It happens not infrequently that we move cats from one area to another; sometimes felines, like people, just don’t get along, and moving one to another suite can be a simple and effective solution.”
That’s just what the staff did with Frankie, moving him to the lobby “in the hopes that this higher-energy environment will offer him a little more stimulation (and that he won’t seek “stimulation” in the form of ‘torturing one’s neighbors’),” Angela Hartley, development director at Tabby’s Place, told PITB. “There are a number of zesty cats living in the lobby, so hopefully this will be a congenial crew for Frankie.”
(Here at PITB we suspect S’Mores was quietly instigating the confrontations. Frankie could never be the aggressor. Just look at that innocent face!)
Maybe it’s the cat equivalent of getting moved from a less-eventful cell block to one where the bad boys are kept, except the “cells” are spacious rooms with lots of toys and prime lounging spots, and the staff aren’t COs, but loving employees and volunteers who do their best to keep the cats happy, knowing they’re making a major adjustment to shelter life.
Encouragingly, Frankie seemed to make a friend or two before his move, even sharing a sunny window ledge with a cat named Shelley.
While Frankie would do best as the only cat in his future home, since he doesn’t like sharing the crown, his acceptance of Shelley and a few others show he’s at heart a social animal too. He just prefers humans, perhaps because we know our place is to serve him and his kind.
We wondered whether Frankie’s sometimes disagreeable disposition was the result of the trauma associated with losing his longtime home after 11 years.
“You know, it’s admittedly hard to speculate about Frankie’s motivations. He’s far from the first cat we’ve welcomed to Tabby’s Place after losing their homes, and most of them are…not Frankie-esque,” Hartley told us. “I’d be more inclined to guess that he’s always been a bit of a firecracker, but having a whole peanut gallery of feline neighbors only amplifies his exuberance.”
Here’s to hoping Frankie finds his new roommates more to his liking as he waits for a human who will return his world to its rightful order by doting on him.
All images courtesy of Tabby’s Place.