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East Bay SPCA Home
The East Bay SPCA saves 
     and improves the lives of cats and dogs and connects
     people and pets in our community.











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Welcome to Shelter Life at the East Bay Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

We began as the Oakland SPCA in 1874. Today, the East Bay SPCA includes two animal shelters and three clinics in our community.

This is our day.

Monday, June 05, 2006

The one that got away...

The East Bay SPCA is a great place to work.

But if you are a pet owner, it's also really, really handy. Employees don't get any special privileges, but they do get discounts on adoptions and on vet care. (We have to meet the same expectations as clients for adoptions and services, and while we also have to wait a little longer to get served, for multi-pet households, it's a nice benefit in addition to getting paid.)

One of the unarticulated benefits is an early eye on the new cats and dogs. Are you looking for a special companion? If you are patient and keep your eye on the back door, as the staff is doing intake, you will probably see the perfect pet, and can get to know him or her before anyone else.

(Frankly, since most of us have pets already, this benefit isn't as used as often one might think!)

I am not looking for a cat. I used to be a cat person, but since I acquired two very doggy dogs a few years back, I figured my cat days were over.

And then there was "Jet." A boringly-colored black kitty. Common. Young. Brash. And brave.

Jet was our "shelter cat." If you read in here regularly, you know we typically have one shelter cat in each facility, who likes or is at least apathetic to dogs, with which we can test how dogs do around cats. They stay until they get adopted, then we get a new shelter cat. (Chloe, the muted calico, who was in the shelter for over a year, just adopted this weekend!)

Jet was the first cat who actually appeared to like my dogs. And more importantly, Jet was first cat who my dogs actually understood was not a stuffed animal to be shredded and de-squeaked.

They aren't mean dogs; just intense. If they see a cat, they chase it. If they are allowed to get near a cat, they paw it and lick it (looking for the squeaker?). If they are allowed to paw and lick it, it's usually a nice match.

Which NEVER happens. A 5 to 8 pound cat, seeing a combined 150 pounds of Labrador charging towards them, rarely sticks around to get licked.

But Jet did. Jet would jump into my office, over the baby gate which protects the office from my beasts, and visit. Just hang out. If the Terrible Twins got too enthusiastic, Jet jumped back out, but just for a few minutes. Once the dogs got settled again, he jumped back in. I couldn't keep him out of my office.

I thought about adopting Jet and taking advantage of my adoption benefit. I thought about it a little more. He was a plain black cat! (Aside from my pleading posts in here to the contrary, I always figured I'd get me a neat-o fancy-schmancy looking cat.)

But Jet was a keeper. I decided on Monday that I needed to give him a permanent place with Pete and Maddie. After all, black cats were so hard to find homes, I'd be doing him a favor, right?

Hah. He was adopted that weekend. I We have missed him ever since. We try to make friends with the new dog-friendly shelter cats, but alas, the Terrible Twins are just too much dog for them.

I got excited to meet Voodoo today. A Jet look-a-like, Voodoo likes dogs, treats them with appropriate disrespect and doesn't take guff. Perfect.

But P & M...sigh. They are just too much dog. L.D. introduced Voodoo to them today, and Voodoo lasted -- like a bronco rider in the rodeo -- all of about 9 seconds and then climbed up on the cabinets until we left the building.

I miss Jet. He's making a client of ours in Oakland very happy.

But Pete and Maddie and I miss the one that got away.

I'm not in the market to adopt a dog, but every time I get attached to one and think, as I am getting ready to come in for my Sunday stint - "Hm. I'm looking forward to walking (dog name here)", I often find the dog has either been adopted or has been sent to Pleasanton!

I think it is a Small Animal Version of Murphy's Law.

It is also probably just as well, else I'd have a house full of animals right now.



:: cough cough PATRICK cough cough ::

- Jessica


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