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Rags-to-Riches Domestic Cat Rooney

Share Your Story: Living with a Domestic Cat

By Hayley

Rags-to-Riches Domestic Cat Rooney

Bald, Underweight Rooney, Last April

Rags-to-Riches Domestic Cat Rooney

Healthy Rooney, Last September :)

Cat's Name & Age:

Rooney, about 6 years

Best Characteristics of the Domestic Cat

loving, loyal

Most Challenging Characteristics of the Domestic Cat

can be quite bitey!!

When, Where and How I Got My Cat

Rooney adopted us. He was my neighbour's daughter's cat and was temporarily re-homed with him. My neighbour's own cat had just had kittens and was quite hostile towards Rooney.

Rooney was timid, underweight, and suffering from stress-related baldness - most of the fur from his waist down was missing.

He started visiting us with what we think in hindsight was to get sanctuary - Mrs Kitty with her kittens, the neighbour's house is smaller than ours and Rooney just needed some time to find himself and become a proper cat again.

I'd Describe My Cat As…

He took some time to come out of his shell. He was so very timid, but it quickly became apparent that he is a very loving and affectionate cat.

Rooney accepts kitty-fuss on his terms - if he wants it, you cannot ignore him or you'll get a bite. Not an aggressive bite, just a nip - but enough to tell you that he wants attention. Fuss him when he doesn't want it and he'll try and bite again - but we've learned to read his moods and temperament.

He's a bit of a climber too, his front claws are currently worn down to stumps from when he scales our wall to miaow outside our bedroom window at night - quite possibly why he's more of a bitey kitty than a use-the-paws kitty!

He likes company and often follows you around the house. If he's sleeping somewhere and wakes up to find you in another room or on another floor of the house, he'll come and find you and jump in your lap with a cute little chirrup sound.

He also often likes to greet me in the mornings by jumping on the bed, climbing on top of me, lying down and then paw-padding on my face.

It's possible he was mis-treated as a kitten as he used to duck or cower when you tried to stroke his head. Of course, he doesn't do that any more!


  • Give the cat time to adjust to you. He/she may have been mistreated and thus be wary of humans.
  • Give your cat plenty of love and fuss. Many people think cats are independent and self-sufficient, but they need as much love and companionship as dogs.

Franny Syufy, About.com Cats, says:

What a wonderful rags-to-riches story!

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