Albie

Cats, Rehabilitate

Can our rehabilitation programme transform this grubby and grouchy stray?

Albie's intake photo giving us a hard stareEarly summer and a stray cat is brought to us, having been seen in the area for several weeks. Sadly, no owner can be found and judging by his behaviour he’s been fending for himself for a little while. He spits and lunges at us to make us move away, but we understand that he is just scared. 

To make him feel more comfortable, we get some basic care done under sedation. Stronghold Plus kills the many ticks on him, and a check over shows that, apart from a few scars and scabs he is a healthy young cat. A thorough groom of his undercoat transforms him from grubby to gorgeous, and we name him Albie.
 

Albie looking wary in his outdoor area

Albie spends his time watching us carefully from his pod, and we don’t put him under any pressure to interact with us. A few weeks later he will eat in front of us and starts to rub around the legs of his regular carer. 

Cautiously we introduce touching him with toy wands, and then by the height of summer he is giving head bops to his friends. If he is startled he will run away – this is a forwards step from hissing and lunging as he is choosing to take himself away and evaluate the situation. Many times he chooses to come back out again.

Albie in the enrichment room looking much more relaxed

We’ve also been teaching Albie to manoeuvre around his pod and into his carrier using chicken as a lure, which means we can now take him to the enrichment playroom and the garden for a change of scene. As he grows in confidence he really appreciates more enrichment. At the start of September he tries out a lap cuddle for the first time with his favourite carer – we were hoping for this day!


The Rehoming team have been looking for a match for Albie – someone who can understand his behaviour as moving house may well take him back a few steps in his development. The family who applied had owned a nervous cat before and we matched them with a few cats. But it was a flirtatious Albie who stole their hearts when they visited the rehoming centre! It was heartwarming that they also chose him because he had been with us for longer.

We checked in with Albie and he settled in well. At Christmas we got a lovely photo and update of a happy cat! It was definitely a new beginning for Albie.

A photo from his new home with the Christmas tree

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