Hosie is a small raggedy black cat with no teeth, expressive eyes and a slow-motion determination who has been with us for a little over three years now. He was one of the cats we rescued who had been abandoned in a house when the owner was admitted to the Alzheimer’s ward of a nursing home. Buddy was the dog left in the backyard but I don’t want to talk about him. I miss him so much. [tears] Anyway, back to Hosie. A neighbor went into the house and dumped a bag of dry cat food on a cookie sheet and left the cats to fend for themselves. Hosie, one of those cats, had a raging case of stomatitis, his gums swollen, infected, and so painful that he could barely swallow, let alone eat dry cat food. The lady’s son told us the cat had cancer in the mouth and suggested: “someone should put a bullet in his head.” Some people’s kids, eh? Fast forward a bit. Hosie’s teeth had to be removed, he is being treated for this painful nemesis and he is now a relatively happy boy.

Here are before and after pics of Hosie, the first day and a few weeks later.

At first, Hosie so weak that he could barely move but after intensive care and lots of love, he gained some strength back and became a force to be reckoned with. He wasn’t mean on the inside, he was in so much pain that he’d react violently with the slightest provocation. Now, he is an absolute sweetheart as long as the other cats leave him alone and most of all, don’t step on him. Hosie loves his mom and lays next to her whenever possible. When she gets up, he s-l-o-w-l-y makes his way over to dad and lays down. Unless he gets excited, which is rare, he typically moves like a sloth, slow and deliberate. If he wants on Mom’s lap and another cat is in the way, he s-l-o-w-l-y moves in and most of the time the other cat will move. If not, we intervene to avoid a scrap. I’ll scoop Hosie up and lay him on a pillow next to me and if he is still insistent on getting to Mom, we’ll coax one of the other cats to move and give him the little space he needs. We sometimes refer to Hosie as Slow Motion Determination because that’s what he is. We’ve never seen anything quite like it. He’s not a bully, he’s just determined. We could all learn a lot from this little critter.

I closed my Facebook account quite a while ago. I just…it just…anyway, I closed my account and am happier for it. Once in a blue moon, I might scan my wife’s feed to see pictures of doggies. I love doggies. Cats too, but I do love doggies and want to help if I can. Alas, I probably won’t be scanning anymore because there is just too much gorp to scroll through to find anything of value. Sadly, some people, who are good people at heart, have somehow contracted political rabies. What they crank out on Facebook these days shows that they spend their days festering with hatred for whoever is in office rather than focusing on the noble task of saving animal lives. Reading a post, I can now predict with great accuracy who made it.

Here’s a hint if you happen to be one of those unhappy people perpetually venting your political spleen, nobody cares what you think. That’s not meant to be an insult, it’s a sad fact of life. Here is a case in point; do you care about my politics? Really, do you care? No. See? Do I care what my neighbor’s politics are? Nope. I wouldn’t care if he thinks the President is a shape-shifting lizard alien as long as he keeps that stuff at his house and it doesn’t spill into my life.

Does Hosie care about your politics or mine? Absolutely not. Will political posts save animal lives or drive people away? That last one is a biggie, innit?

Our politics and personality quirks should not be a deciding factor when it comes to caring for our fur babies but all too often what comes out of our mouth can push others away. I know because my wife says I can be rather cantankerous at times. I KNOW! I can’t believe she would say such a thing either! 🙂 Whether you like me or not, you know that I will always fight for our animal friends and like you, I might even be tempted to pound on a person who mistreats a critter, any critter, but my politics has nothing to do with it. You might admire the way I care for critters but you could quickly despise me for my politics and we should never allow that to distract us from our mission.

Lucy, the huge mastiff mix that we rescued LOVES Mom. ADORES Mom! She protects Mom from the big bully UPS and FedEx men that come to kill us. When they arrive, she transforms into a vicious, red-eyed devil beast barking and thrashing herself against the picture window and they are truly terrified of her. Their opinion of her is deeply engraved in their hearts because of what they see. They don’t appreciate the sweet, gentle Lucy who cuddles in bed with Mom or the precious little girl who gives slobbery kisses. All they know about her is what she posts on Facebook. Wait. No. That’s not what I meant…or is it?

Okay, I’ll tell you what my politics are so that you can decide if you hate me or not. Hosie and our minions of furkids think I’m pretty cool so your opinion of me doesn’t really matter. 🙂  Some time ago I got so fed up with the insanity, the back and forth hash slinging in the media and on the boards that one day I simply turned it all off and walked away. Yep. Done. Trust me, that was a monumental accomplishment for a newsaholic like me. I no longer listen to the crazies. I don’t watch the crazies on television. I don’t want to know what the crazies are saying or doing. I wasn’t happy before but I am now. I might check in on the world news once in a while to see who is invading who and who is huffing and puffing so I know when to bring in the tomato plants. Beyond that, it’s all just background noise.

Here is how I gauge my level of interest. If I didn’t cause it and I can’t fix it, I don’t want to hear about it. Others can waste their time cursing at the wall if they want but I don’t have to listen. And don’t waste your time yelling at me about something I didn’t cause and can’t fix. Now, there are some things in life that I didn’t cause and I can’t fix but they negatively influence my life. Those go into the life sucks category. Taxes come to mind. And bad weather. I can either focus on the suck factor of life and be miserable or do something good for myself or others. Life is short. Make wise decisions.

We didn’t cause Hosie’s nightmare situation at his previous home but we could do something about it and we did. We made a difference and we saved a life with some slow motion determination.

If you have wandered or become distracted by things that you didn’t cause and you can’t fix, perhaps it is time to return to your first love. We cannot be effective advocates for the fur babies if we are wasting our time cursing at a wall. If someone else is clogging your Facebook feed with bile, you can unfollow them. They will still be your friend but you don’t need that poison in your life, especially if you didn’t cause it and you can’t fix it and neither can they.

Be happy. If you are not happy, and others can tell if you are or not by what you say or post, maybe it’s time to do something different. If you think your Facebook posts will truly change the world, God bless you, go for it. Put a picture of Hosie next to your computer and look at it before you press send on that next post or email.

We can only truly change the world for the fur babies with focused slow-motion determination.

Proverbs 4:25-27
Let your eyes look directly forward, and your gaze be straight before you. Ponder the path of your feet; then all your ways will be sure. Do not swerve to the right or to the left; turn your foot away from evil.

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