Domestic Shorthair
Picture of Pumpkin, a male Domestic Shorthair

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Home:Capitol Hill, DC  
Sex: Male   Weight: 14 lbs.

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   Leave a treat for Pumpkin

Purr Boy, Sweetface, FORMERLY KNOWN AS Poopy Butt

Kitty Complexion:
sleepyvery active
not curiousvery curious
not vocalvery vocal

Sun Sign:
Quick Bio:
-cat rescue

Gotcha Date:
August 1st 2003

March 1st 2003

Red Tabby

Food, glorious food!

Being pestered by his brother, Loki

Favorite Toy:
Orange mousies

Favorite Nap Spot:
My bed

Favorite Food:
He'll eat anything.

Infinite capacity for love despite having been badly treated before he was rescued.


Arrival Story:
My first cat, Loki, was lonely because I was away a lot at a wretched job which not only required long hours but also a long commute. I thought he needed company. I went into the Petco on Connecticut Avenue NW in DC where Ward 1 Alley Cats used to show cats needing homes. It was love at first sight for both of us. One week later, he came home on my birthday.

Pumpkin was picked up as a stray by Montgomery County Animal Control (MD). He was scheduled to be euthanized before Ward 1 Alley Cats obtained custody of him. No one knows how he came to be lost or abandoned but he clearly suffered during his time on the streets. He still has anxiety about food but seems to be finally recovered from his residual digestive problems. He is loving, gentle and a great companion. 07/27/2006 I recently had to replace my ancient stacked washer/dryer with a combo/all in one machine for space reasons. The new machine is only as tall as a regular washer. My big tabby boy, 19 lb Pumpkin, made his first visit to the previously inaccessible space behind the new machine - and didn't know how to get back out. He is a good leaper despite his size but between the washer/dryer and the hot water heater, he really didn't have any room. He might have made it out by himself in time but I decided to help. I thought, "What would Annemarie Lucas [of Animal Precinct] do?" I got a bath towel and lowered it to Pumpkin. Took a few secs for him to figure out that he could climb up and out with me anchoring the towel. He climbed out and all was well. Update October 11, 2007 Despite being twice his size, Loki dominates Pumpkin. But Pumpkin is not taking it lying down (as it were) the way he used to. He often hisses or swats Loki before giving up and leaving the room. I am actually happy at this development. Pumpkin is a sweet boy but I don't want him to be a doormat in his own house. He will never be the top cat but he can now hold his own. No picture can capture the sweetness of his expression - must be seen to be believed. Update September 28, 2008At his annual checkup in August, his vet said it was high time Pumpkin had his teeth cleaned. This was scary, since he is such a big cat, and expensive. But worth it to save his teeth and keep him healthy. Update December 23, 2008 A desire to avoid a lawsuit will keep me from disclosing the brand of dry food I used to feed Pumpkin (and only Pumpkin). I switched him to the same food the other two get, Eukanuba and other high end foods. The difference is incredible. His "poopy butt" is now perfectly clean. And he is much more affectionate. Between having his teeth cleaned and switching his dry food, he is a much happier cat. Updated 05/13/09 I added a new photo of Pumpkin sleeping on my bed. I think you can tell that he has lost some weight which for him is good news. Updated 10/21/09 I am very pleased to report that my big boy is officially not so big. On his last vet visit, his weight was down from 19 lbs to 15 lbs 9 oz. His vet is VERY pleased. And so is his mom! The vet said she could tell from his body shape that he had lost the weight slowly and safely. His ideal weight is 15 lbs. But his vet said that even at his current weight, he is and is likely to remain much healthier. Update July 9, 2010 Pumpkin had his yearly well cat visit today and he is in very good shape. Literally! At 14 pounds, 3 ounces, his vet says his weight is now perfect. Update September 8, 2010 Pumpkin had his second teeth cleaning last month. Unfortunately, he had developed a FORL in a pre-molar so that tooth had to come out. He bounced back quickly from the surgery and is fine. Update July 18, 2011 Pumpkin made his annual trek to his vet two weeks ago. He weighs 14.25 pounds which is puurfect. Unfortunately, the vet said his teeth needed to be cleaned again. Oy. But his teeth looked worse than they were - no extractions this year. Definite bone loss, though. His vet says that red-orange boys are prone to tooth problems. July 23, 2012 Pumpkin had his yearly checkup (and annual rabies shot) tonight. He's in good shape overall but he needs another cleaning. The vet said he drew the short straw when it comes to his teeth. August 1, 2012 Happy Home Day, Pumpkin! NINE years ago you came home with me. Loved you then, love you now. October 8, 2012 Pumpkin had his teeth cleaned again. No extractions this time. Yay! February 5, 2015 Unlike his brother and sister who have had serious health problems lately, Pumpkin is fine and his calm, affectionate self. He still acts like every meal will be his last but apart from that he is a big, sweet boy who just wants to cuddle. December 2, 2015 While I would not say that Pumpkin does not miss his late brother, Loki, I do think Pumpy likes being the only male. That said, Lacey steals his food though she is one-third his size. He is more affectionate toward me since he doesn't have to compete with Loki for my time. With Loki gone and Lacey sick, I appreciate having one robust and happy cat; he is a real comfort. March 3, 2016 I spoke too soon. I took Pumpkin to the vet for a cleaning last month. Unfortunately, he has oral squamous cell carcinoma in his jaw bone. This is an aggressive cancer with a high rate of recurrence after treatment. So I am enjoying whatever time we have left. April 15, 2016 We saw Dr. Kats today. There is no doubt about the oral squamous cell sarcoma diagnosis now. The tumor has doubled in two months. She doesn't think he is in pain but she thinks he doesn't feel right, either. He has lost a pound in two months which is a bad sign. She thinks he has a month or maybe two left. When he stops eating, that is the sign to let him go. Dr. Kats added that in her 16 years as a vet, there has been no progress in treating this disease. She said that even if I had all the money in the world, medicine has nothing to offer. He smells terrible because of a secondary infection in his mouth. He is still grooming himself which transfers the smell to his fur. This does not stop me from cuddling him as much as he wants. UPDATE May 25, 2016 Pumpkin is still here, affectionate and still eating. His stench is terrible but he cannot help that. He is also bleeding intermittently which makes a mess. Some of my towels and bedding will have to be tossed after he dies.Sometimes it is very hard to deal with the mess he makes. But none of it is his fault. This is the time when you either live up to the promise you make when you adopt a cat - that you will take care of him or her to the best of your ability until the end - or you don't. Pumpkin still looks at me with light and love in his eyes. Until the light starts to fade, I will care for him. When it does, I will make sure he has a gentle passing. LAST UPDATE June 23, 2016 A wonderful vet helped Pumpkin leave this world on Sunday, June 12. He was finally beginning to have trouble eating which was the sign I had been advised to watch for. I miss him so much. He was sweet-tempered his whole life right to the end. And I think it is fair to say he was brave. I will miss my stripey boy forever. Godspeed, sweetest of cats.

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