Pet Tips 'n' Tales

Homeless Cat To Hero

Courtesy Photo"
Dr. Sumo I presume! Within hours, this elegant creamsicle colored Tabby, went from homeless to hero. Judy's simple act of kindness for the cat changed the outcome of both their lives.


Last summer, Werner and Judy discovered a beautiful, two-year-old, orange and white short haired stray cat in their backyard.
"He joined us while we were gardening," Judy claims. "We noticed an identification tattoo in his ear. He came close enough to pat, but not close enough to read his ID. So Werner and I opened a can of tuna, put it on the kitchen floor and left the house door ajar. In walked the cat. We decided to let him stay if he wanted. However, after he ate, he went back outside, and disappeared."
That is until 3 AM! Yes! In the middle of the night!  Loudly meowing at their door, proclaiming he was home, the cat stomped back into their house.
"I set up a litter box for him, and fell back into bed," says Judy. "He followed me, jumped up on the bed, and then boldly proceeded to walk up the entire length of my body.
When he stepped on my right breast, I felt a sharp pain. I tried to find the mysterious spot but it was difficult to detect.
Two months earlier, the doctor gave me a head-to-toe check-up and he judged me to be in perfect health. I had stopped doing self breast exams, and unexpectedly, the cat had just done one.
I returned to the doctor, and he said, "I don't feel this is cancer, but let's do a test."
We were both surprised when the results came back as positive, and I had to have a lumpectomy.
The speed with which the lump had materialized and grown dumbfounded me. Because of the stray kitty's 'cat-scan', the cancer was detected in its very early stage with no lymph involvement.
"Miraculous" describes this four-footed angel's timely arrival and action.
The day after the kitty 'stayed the night' with us, we took him to the humane society concerned that  someone who loved him had lost him.
Because of his ID tattoo, within ten minutes, the shelter clerk had phoned his owner, and asked him if he wanted the cat back. Happily for us, the owner said, "No," and the cat had his forever home with us.
The cat originally came from a shelter, so they had his history, medical records and name! "Meet Steve," they said. But, no matter how often we called him, Steve, he refused to answer to that name. "Typical feline independence," we thought.
When we studied his records ourselves, we discovered that someone who had filled in his paper work was named Steve. The cat's real name was Sumo! As soon as we began calling him Sumo, he looked at us as if to say, "Well...finally! I come in and give you a free cat scan, and you can't even get my name straight. Humans! "
Sumo loves to cat-chat. Well, chat and tattle that is. (Chat is also the French word for "cat.") The mornings that Sumo decides that Werner has not given him enough breakfast, I get an earful of complaints! At nights, Sumo purrs himself  to sleep in one of his own two beds. Other than the night he found my tumor, he has never shared our bed.
However, sometimes we  find Sumo sitting atop one of our bedposts, silent and still, like an ancient Egyptian cat sculpture, or a furry guardian angel watching over us.
Sumo was meant to come to us and help locate my cancer; he saved my life. I don't know what my chances of survival would have been without him. We feel blessed that Sumo chose our home that beautiful Saturday morning," says Judy.


Don't be upset when cats choose your flower beds for their litter box.  If cats are in your yard, you likely also have rodents that attracted them.  If you buy fertilizer for your flowers, relax and consider these natural mouse patrolers' 'gifts' as free fertilizer! 

Nance, a Tips 'n' Tales fan in Cincinnati, Ohio writes, "Cats seek out dry earth. My sister is trying to keep cats out of her garden by embedding and replenishing orange and lemon peels in the topsoil.
Here are a few of Nance's other suggestions:     
-"plant" chicken wire over mulch/soil before bedding or sowing plants. (Cut squares big enough for plants.) 

- Place pine cones side-by-side over your soil, or under the mulch.
- Lure the cat away from the garden: Plant Nepeta/catnip/catmint in another area.

- Lavender borders discourage cats and deer.
- Coleus caina has a strong unpleasant scent for cats.

- Another "stinky" substance is blood meal fertilizer.

- An organic commercial product "Shake Away," has the urine of the predators coyote and fox.  It is safe for plants, children and pets.

- DO NOT use mothballs. Nance's research indicated that they are extremely toxic for pets,    people and plants.


Nymbus, the Silver Persain cat swimming Mary Ellen and Miss Wings
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