Monday, January 15, 2007

Meet Moritz

Here kitty, kitty, kitty...

We finally did it, we got a cat! We looked through pages and pages of adoptable cats at and decided on this wonderful guy. We picked him up on Wednesday evening in the middle of another Seattle snow storm. It took us HOURS to get up to the Lynnwood PAWS and back since everyone was trying to get home before the snow turned to ice. I think I chewed down three or four fingernails on the drive up since I was afriad we'd not make it. Good thing we stuck with getting him on Wednesday since the next day everything was snowed in.

The kids decided to name him Moritz... I am assuming they must have read some story with a character named Moritz - I can't think of any other source for the name since it isn't a common American one.

Moritz is a perfect cat! He tolerates the chaos of the kids (even joins in a lot), is very playful (loves to chase strings and a little feather toy we purchased) and purrs like crazy when he is in his mellow mood and is looking for attention. When we first took him out of the travel box, he was extremely curious but came and snuggled up to each of us as he checked out his surroundings. And what silken fur!

The people at the shelter said that he is around 1.5 to 2 years old. They found him wandering the streets of Arlington. His vet check-up shows him as being in perfect health and he is current on all of his shots. He is also no longer able to help make kittens as of last Tuesday. Awww, poor guy.

The only dilemma we have is that one of our boys possibly has a mild cat allergy. We just got Mortitz on Thursday so we are going to give it some time to see how things go (as well as consult with the pediatrician and the vet). If worse comes to worse, we'll have to give Moritz back to the shelter where we found him so that another loving family can adopt him. I can't imagine that would take long since he is so wonderful!

In the meantime, until we know for sure about any allergies, we are going to start by following the advice from some pamphlets we got from the shelter:
  • Wash Moritz once a week with a pitcher of warm water (this should remove a large amount of the dander which causes allergies)
  • Keep Moritz out of the bedroom
  • Possibly get a HEPA air filter (I will do some searching on the internet)
  • Clean the floor with a damp mop and the furniture with a damp cloth.
There is more that we can do but we'll start with this and see how it goes. I don't think Moritz (or us) is going to like the washing-with-a-pitcher-of-water part at all but maybe it will go better than we think? Either way, if that helps it will be worth it!


Trisha said...

Congratulations on the mew kitty. He is so cute and sounds like a good natured cat. I hope that it all works out on the allergy front and you are able to keep him. Keep us posted.

Corey said...

Thanks Trisha! He is such a sweetie. It ends up that two of our kids caught a cold around the same time as we got Moritz so maybe that was part of what seemed like the allergy symptoms. Still not sure. Guess we'll figure it out one way or another.

Alice in Austria said...

He is a beauty!!!

Do let us know what you find out about the allergy, this will really interest us as well. We don't have any problems, but my cousin's baby does, and the ped was very very insistent about them getting rid of their cat immediately - which they've had for over 12 years! My aunt and uncle are devasated as the cat's like a family member to them. So that's very bad news, but the ped insisted that the allergy will get worse and might eventually lead to asthma. We've urged my cousin to get a second opinion before he really lets the cat be put to sleep.

Corey said...

Oh, Alice, that is horrible news about your cousin's cat! Yes, I hope they get a second opinion first. I have been reading up on allergies a lot (since no one in our family seems to have any!) and have learned many different ways to deal with the causes (and the limits on what we can do). If they do end up having to get rid of the cat, is there someone who can take it? Just seems so horrible to have it put to sleep!

Jennifer Lee said...

I lived with 2 cats for years despite a pretty bad allergy. Over time, and with allergy shots (I'm also allergic to pollen and a bunch of other things) I got used to them and it was fine. One trick: vacuuming stirs up all the dust and cat hairs in the air, and during the hours it takes for those things to settle the allergy sufferer will have problems. Also, keeping the cat out of the bedroom is a good idea. The HEPA filter was also a really good buy for us. I was already an adult when we got the cats, though, so I don't know if kids need to be more careful.

Corey said...

Jennifer: Thank you for your comments! They are very helpful. I was doing a lot of reading online the last week and started to really get freaked out... like I would be harming my child no matter what if I didn't do things exactly right. Sigh, I always find some way to freak myself out via information on the internet. ;-)

Thank you for the vacuuming and other tips. We have a good Miele vacuum but it isn't the HEPA one so I'm going to try and vacuum when the kids are in bed (which is also when I clean the cat box).

The weird thing is that C doesn't seem to have any reaction at all lately. Also, it just so happens that he and M got colds right around the time that we got Moritz, so I'm wondering if perhaps the reaction I was seeing was the precursor to a cold?

We were at the pediatrician today (for a totally unrelated issue) and I asked her about C's reaction and a possible allergy and she said to just wait it out a bit and see how things go. She said that it could have been just an initial reaction or due to the cold or perhaps he actually got some cat fur in his eye (Moritz was rubbing up against C's face that day) which caused him to rub his eye a lot, or who knows. So, for now we are really starting to let Moritz into our hearts since it feels like things are going to be fine.

It is just so nice to have Moritz around. He is such a relaxed fellow. The only bad habit we have found is that he bites (lightly) when he doesn't like how we are holding or petting him or when he wants to play and we reach out to him. The vet said we need to get him to stop that since if he were to break the skin even by accident (especially with the kids), it could be very dangerous since an infection can rise up very quickly.