Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Admitting Defeat

I don't like to admit defeat, but I've reached that point with one of my own foster cats. Owen has been part of our family since early May 2010. I've been working and working with Owen, but have found that he's been playing WAY too rough with my little old lady girl cats. Owen is a sweetheart. He loves everybody and everything. He's on my lap all the time.

Problem? Owen is a "Social Moron." He doesn't understand that a hiss and growl from my little old lady cats means "Stop it right there, buddy".
It's been several months with me working with him. Sadly enough, Owen thinks his name is now "Nooooooooooooo-wen".

Today, I came home to this:

Owen looked guilty. But you know how it goes - something is broken and we always assume the worst with the usual suspects.

I've been breaking up more cat fights than a Jersey Shores bouncer. Poor Owen was even the victim himself recently and I had to take him to the vets:

Tomorrow, I'm taking Owen to a new foster home where he'll no doubt have a lot more success. The couple is THRILLED that he's a rowdy guy and they're going to really enjoy him.

As for me, I feel like a failure. I know that's ridiculous thinking. I did my best with Owen and I haven't had to move a cat in many years. But this one of the most important aspects of fostering - imagine if we didn't have this information about Owen. He could end up in the wrong home again and again before we'd figure it out.

When he's adopted, it'll be the RIGHT home - the FIRST time.

I hope I don't cry when I drop him off tomorrow. The guilt is overwhelming tonight.


Jan's Funny Farm said...

Oh, poor Owen, he just doesn't understand. As hard as it is to take him to a new foster, you've done a lot for him and he'll get a good home because of you.

Kea said...

I absolutely understand the feelings of guilt and of failing, but of course logically that's not the case. Sometimes it's just not the right mix and nothing is going to change that, no matter your efforts.

When I adopted Nicki 3+ years ago, no amount of proper integration helped with Annie, the existing cat. They were two cats who wanted to be "alpha" and still do--it's not a peaceful kitty household. Would I have chosen Nicki, if I could go back in time? I really can't say I would--or wouldn't. I just don't know. I love him dearly, but he's high energy and into everything, needs a lot of attention, especially in the winter months when he can't go out into the back space much, or at all. Then it can be h*ll in the house and requires copious amounts of adult beverages (lol).

At least you know Owen is going to a foster home that is more suited to his needs, and you are right--he'll find his forever home the first time.

This is what makes YOU such a terrific foster mom--you know what's best for the cat and are able to admit that your house (not YOU, the household environment) isn't it. Someone's whose ego was in the way might not do the same thing. So kudos! I hope we'll get an update on how Owen is doing at some point. :-)

CanuckPet said...

As hard as it is, you are doing it for him and just as we know that some adopters are not suitable for certain cats (but still great adopters) some foster homes aren't suitable either

Besides, its you kitties who failed to accept him not you LOL

But at least you are doing whats right for him and he can enjoy being rowdy there

Anonymous said...

Don't feel guilty Beth, I had to
send the foster mom Valerie and 3 of
her rowdy foster kids
to another foster home when one of the other kittens had an accident and needed surgery.
You are doing what is best for your furry family. Now that you have an opening why not go to the AC and rescue the little orange tabby who looks about 4 weeks old and is on his own, he has a U beside his name.

Steve Bartlett said...

As you know I've had the same issue, most recently with Charlie, who you found a new foster home for (and then a forever home). I would have loved to have kept Charlie, but he just didn't fit it with all the other animals here. Owen sounds like he would have been perfect for my house -- you should have called me :). But it's great that he has a more compatible spot to emjoy.

Crystal said...

I just wanted you to know that I really believe that it is just the son Owen, a little trouble maker; thought his name was Noooooowen until he was 5 and started kindergarten, when he first started sounding out his name and learning to print it, his work always came home with "Nowen" written on it!
Tooooo funny:) Wishing your little Owen every kitty dream come true....he will thrieve in his new foster home and your home will now have some peace. Thank you for sharing kitty adventures with us.

Darlene said...

Please don't feel guilty. You do SO much for animals. You gave him all the love and patience in the world AND you found him a good foster home. If it wasn't for you, I hate to think where he'd be now.