Pawsitive Tales

Sharing heartwarming tales of animals and their humans.

Alice and Buster — June 13, 2022

Alice and Buster

~ Alice and Buster ~

Last year, Tomcat, Buster, was finally able to stop searching for his forever home. When Alice rescued him, not only did his life change but so did hers. Since then, Buster has had a huge impact on those around him and has brought Alice so much love and happiness. 

In late 2021, Alice was told about a wandering Tomcat. He had been in the area for quite some time after being abandoned and was obviously in need of some urgent veterinary care. Being the founder of Kitty Kingdom Wellington, she went out and set a cat trap. It took some time, but finally, he found his way into the trap and was taken into Alice’s care.

Seeing him up close, Alice noticed a large wound on his side. She took him back to Kitty Kingdom and let him rest while she tried to find a vet who could help them. It was evident the Tomcat, whom Alice named Buster, was in a lot of pain and needed to be seen as soon as possible. They went to the Wellington After Hours Veterinary Clinic as it was very late and everywhere else had been booked up. 

Once at the vet, Buster was immediately sedated and taken into surgery. There, they treated his wound and neutered him at the same time. Had he not been brought in when he was, it was likely he wouldn’t have made it. The surgery went smoothly, however, he tested positive for feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV). Alice was faced with a decision: to have Buster euthanised or to take him home. It was an easy choice to make and she took him home to recover. 

Alice ensured Buster had a room all to himself for 48 hours while he recovered. After this, he was let out into the rest of the house. While he was afraid, he wasn’t aggressive when he gained some freedom. Alice sat and talked to Buster for hours, trying to gain his trust. Eventually, he let her pat him, which progressed to him sitting on her lap and giving her the same love he was receiving.  

One week later, Alice took in three stray kittens. As she was checking them over, Buster made an unusual noise which the kittens seemed to react positively to. Due to him being a Tomcat and having FIV, Alice didn’t want him to interact with the kittens for their own safety. However, Buster was becoming increasingly worried and frustrated at not being allowed near the kittens. After a lot of persuasion on his part, Alice reluctantly let him and the kittens sniff one another. There was nothing but love between them, and Buster even began grooming the kittens!

The more Buster interacted with the kittens, the more he wanted to be around them. Alice allowed him 10 minutes per day, which gradually built up to two hours, which was closely monitored. Now, Buster can spend as much time with any kittens who come through the rescue. Alice trusts him and he has become a full-time foster dad to all the kittens at Kitty Kingdom. 

Before Christmas 2021, Alice took Buster to get some infected teeth taken out. This was a huge relief for both of them. It meant he no longer suffered from the pain, and Alice felt reassured it was safer for the kittens he cared for, even though he was always gentle. Unfortunately, not long after, it was discovered he was in the final stages of renal failure and had a large growth inside his mouth. It was too risky to have it removed, so Alice decided to keep him with her and monitor him. 

Due to concerns over the growth potentially rupturing, Alice limited Buster’s time with the kittens, much to his disgust. A few months later, Alice saw Buster chewing on a cat bed. Fearing the worst, she checked his mouth in case the growth had ruptured. When she looked, she found that it had shrunk! Following a vet appointment, Alice was told Buster’s growth was no longer of any concern and, as a result, could resume being a foster dad. 

Despite his health issues, Buster shows each and every kitten at Kitty Kingdom so much love and affection. Alice continues to monitor his health and wellbeing to make sure he’s as happy as he can be. He has become King of Kitty Kingdom, impacting both humans and felines alike, just by being himself. Not only this, but his story has even been turned into a book to be shared with people near and far! All proceeds from his book, ‘Grandpa Buster of Kitty Kingdom,’ go back to Kitty Kingdom, helping him and all his kittens. 

The bond that Alice and Buster share is truly special. Alice saved Buster’s life and, every day since, Buster has provided her with endless happiness and unconditional love. While their journey together has had its challenges, together, they continue to make each day so much brighter.

Sara, Charlie and Keith — June 1, 2022

Sara, Charlie and Keith

~ Sara, Charlie and Keith ~

Nine years ago, Sara and her daughter, Charlie, met Keith, a black and white cat, who had been waiting day in, day out, for his forever home. From the moment they laid eyes on him, they knew he had found his forever home. 

In 2013, while volunteering at a local cat rescue, Sara and Charlie met a very sick little black and white kitten. He was brought in with the cat flu and had gastrointestinal issues. After a month, he still wasn’t getting any better. Charlie had fallen in love with him. He would follow her everywhere and climb on her shoulders as she worked with Sara at the rescue. 

Because of how much he had impacted her daughter, Sara decided to take him to a vet and got as many tests done as possible. Before adopting him, she wanted to make sure it was safe as she already had several other cats at home. The very next day, being Charlie’s 10th birthday, they went to the rescue and adopted the kitten! From that moment, he had found his forever home and a new name – Keith. 

While he had many health issues, Keith shared his big personality with everyone. It took four months of close monitoring but Sara helped nurse him to health. What has been really special is the bond that he and Charlie share. As someone with autism, Charlie found it hard to interact with her peers. Keith became her best friend and helped provide her with that connection. He waits for her every day to return from school and happily plays with her whenever she wants to. 

Early on, Sara found that Keith had a passion for arts and crafts. He has become quite an artist and does a lot of paintings. As well as this, he is also happy to help Charlie in any arts and crafts project she may be working on. 

Having Keith has brought so much joy into Sara’s life. Wherever he goes, he spreads happiness. Even on days that are challenging, having Keith makes everything a bit brighter. There’s just something about him that makes people smile, no matter what.

At the start of the Covid-19 lockdown, Charlie wanted to start an Instagram account for Keith, to share the joy he brings her with the world. Through this page, they share the ups and downs that Keith experiences as a result of his health issues, both physical and mental. However, Sara and Charlie hope that by sharing Keith with the world, they’re also sharing the positivity he brings. 

The impact that Keith has had on his humans has been huge. He has brought so much happiness and love into Sara and Charlie’s lives. Each day since adopting him has been made so much better simply because he’s there for them. 

Kelly and Rascal — May 16, 2022

Kelly and Rascal

~ Kelly and Rascal ~

Eight years ago, Kelly met Rascal, a small ginger and white kitten. Since then, they have faced some challenges but, by simply being there for one another, they have gotten through each difficulty that’s been thrown their way. 

In 2014, Kelly was looking to adopt a cat. Then, one day, she saw someone wanting to find forever homes for a litter of kittens. Kelly arranged a visit and met with them all. When she arrived, there was one little kitten who wasn’t joining in to play with his siblings and seemed generally quieter. Kelly knew he was the perfect cat for her and adopted him then and there, and named him Rascal.

Having Rascal improved Kelly’s life hugely. He helped her with her mental health, bringing joy and love into each and every day. No matter what, Rascal is always there for his human. Kelly is able to confide in him and knows that he’ll never judge her. As well as this, he never fails to make her laugh with his antics, from pushing open the door to shredding their couch.

Three years ago, Rascal started wheezing. At first, Kelly thought it might have just been a cough, but it continued to get worse and wasn’t settling. She decided to take him to the vet where some tests showed that Rascal had feline asthma. At first, Kelly wasn’t sure how to deal with this. The first few weeks were tough but, after a while, it just became part of their daily routine. 

While it has been a challenge managing all of Rascal’s health difficulties, from asthma to chronic back pain, he has taken everything in his stride. He uses his inhaler three times per day, painkillers and gets some injections every four weeks at their vet. Despite his health difficulties, he enjoys living his best life, from causing mischief around the house to snuggling up with Kelly at the end of the day. In fact, she feels that these experiences have brought Rascal and her closer.

One of Kelly and Rascal’s favourite things is simply spending time together. They enjoy watching Netflix together, and Rascal, living up to his name, often tries to steal some of Kelly’s chips! It’s times like this that bring them the most joy.

The impact that Kelly and Rascal have had on one another has been immeasurable. They have both improved each other’s lives and bring joy and love into each and every day.

Andy and Meow Meow — May 11, 2022

Andy and Meow Meow

~ Andy and Meow Meow ~

Sixteen years ago, Andy adopted Meow Meow, a beautiful brown tabby cat. Since then, she has had a huge impact on Andy, his family and the wider community. 

In 2006, Andy and his partner decided to adopt a cat for their children. Once they found the perfect one, their then 2-year-old middle child, Sophia, named their new furry friend Meow Meow. From that day onward, Meow Meow became a very important family member and has shared so much love and joy. 

Having grown up with Meow Meow, Andy’s children were taught from an early age how to properly care for and interact with animals. However, she has had a big impact on Sophia who is currently studying to work and care for animals. 

Meow Meow has grown to become more independent and loves to meet new people. She has even moved to the local bus stop. She often ventures out to socialise, and cause mischief, with their neighbours. One time, she even managed to steal an entire rack of ribs from a crockpot! To this day, Andy still doesn’t know how she accomplished this. 

Six months ago, Meow Meow went missing. Andy and his family were very concerned for her and her safety. However, they received a call, completely out of the blue, from a vet clinic that was 45 minutes away. They had found Meow Meow! Thankfully, Andy made sure she was microchipped, so they were able to be reunited with each other. This, too, remains a mystery as to how she wandered so far.

Meow Meow has gained more independence since deciding to live at the bus stop. People getting on or off a bus are always greeted by her. She has become a local celebrity, with many stopping for cuddles and photos. Andy loves seeing the absolute joy that Meow Meow brings to everyone. She has certainly become the community’s cat. 

Seeing Meow Meow bring so much love and happiness into the community means so much to Andy. She doesn’t go home much, but will if she needs to. Andy and his family often visit her to see how she’s going and even meet some of her new friends.

The impact that Meow Meow has had on Andy, his family and the greater community has been huge. She spreads joy wherever she goes and brings so many smiles to so many faces.

Jules, Emerald and Ruby — April 28, 2021

Jules, Emerald and Ruby

In 2011, Jules met Emerald and welcomed her into their family. Nine years later, they welcomed another fur baby, Ruby, into their family.  Since then, they have become inseparable.  

In March 2011, Emerald was found and taken into the Wellington SPCA. She had been found on the side of the road, sick and had just given birth to a litter of kittens. Not much was known about her past. However, it appeared she had been abused or neglected due to having only 3 teeth when she was found. 

A few months later, in May of that year, Jules decided to go to the SPCA and find a new furry friend. She had been wanting a cat for a long time and felt this was the right time to welcome one into her home. The first time she went to the SPCA, she didn’t feel she bonded with any cat. The second time, she met Emerald. Emerald was very sick. She was on medications and was dribbling everywhere, however, she showed Jules endless affection and love. The third time Jules went to the SPCA, she left with a happy, healthy and affectionate Emerald.  

Once Jules had brought Emerald home, she immediately ran under the bed. Not long after, she came out and curled up next to Jules. Ever since, Emerald has never left Jules’ side.  

During this time, Jules had been struggling. She felt alone as she had moved to a new city and didn’t know anyone there. Having Emerald brought her a friend and companion. Emerald would follow Jules anywhere she went and would always enjoy a cuddle! As well as this, Emerald was someone Jules could feel comfortable with. She knew Emerald was there for her, and Emerald knew that Jules was there for her.  

Nine years later, Jules decided it was time to bring a dog into their family. After searching social media, she found there was a litter of 10 looking for homes. Jules received a call from the breeder. She told her of the final female puppy and wanted to ensure she was going to a good home. Soon enough, Jules was on her way to Ashburton to meet the puppy.  

As soon as she arrived, Jules was greeted by 10 very excited puppies. One puppy, in particular, was a bit more shy than the others but was kind and sweet. A week later, Jules welcomed a new puppy, Ruby, into her home. As soon as she left, Ruby snuggled into her lap and from that moment, they have become inseparable.  

Having a puppy was an adjustment for Jules. Up until that point, she had been terrified of dogs. Having had a bad experience as a child, she would never have seen herself living with a dog. It wasn’t until her husband, Matt, convinced her to adopt a puppy. It was a challenge learning how to live with a puppy, she felt scared and was concerned that Ruby would become aggressive.  

Over the first few weeks, Jules and Ruby worked together. Jules was so scared but wanted to work through her fear of dogs. Having a kind dog such as Ruby was a big help. Gradually, Jules became more comfortable around dogs. In fact, she attended a socialisation session for Ruby. There were six other dogs there, and Jules didn’t think anything of it. Thanks to the support of Ruby, Jules can now enjoy the company of dogs.

Having Ruby has given Jules a new purpose. Ruby encourages her to get out each day for walks. This, in turn, helps Jules to be present in the moment. They enjoy getting out and about, playing frisbee together and chasing each other around the backyard! Time spent with Ruby is a source of pure happiness for Jules. No matter what, Ruby can always make Jules laugh and smile.  

One time in particular that Ruby helped Jules was just before flying on a plane. Jules gets anxious when going on a plane, and the day before she was struggling a lot. Ruby, who is a very active and energetic dog, spent the whole morning, just before the flight, with Jules. She snuggled up with her for an hour.  Having Ruby at her side helped calm Jules immensely. Knowing that she was there made all the difference in the world.  

When spending time together at home, Jules enjoys the company of Emerald. One of Emerald’s favourite things is to simply snuggle up with Jules. Something that Emerald often does when she wants a cuddle is stand on her back legs and raise her front paws up. She certainly loves showing affection! No matter what, Emerald is there to offer love and comfort to Jules, and she is there for Emerald.  

Not only have Emerald and Ruby had an impact on Jules, but also her mother. Her mother, who has health conditions, enjoys their company. She had also been afraid of dogs but with the support of Ruby, found herself loving spending time with her.  

Because of the immense impact Ruby has had, Jules has started her own business, ‘Sweet As Pup’. Sweet As Pup is an online store where Jules sells treats, accessories and more for dogs and humans alike. Not only are there great products, but they donate proceeds to different charities for dogs. They also work with and support other businesses across New Zealand. 

It is evident how much Jules, Emerald and Ruby mean to one another. The love between them is infinite and they have helped to improve each other’s lives.  

Kaysie and Alfie — April 26, 2021

Kaysie and Alfie

~ Kaysie and Alfie ~

Kaysie has always loved animals, especially cats. She has worked from home as a beauty therapist for a while, and soon hired Maine Coon kitten, Alfie, as her companion and assistant.  

After working by herself from home, Kaysie decided a calm and loving cat would be a wonderful addition to her life. She soon contacted a Maine Coon breeder in Rotorua, New Zealand. They set up a meeting and Kaysie went in to visit the newest litter. 

At the meeting, Kaysie met a very fluffy white and brown Maine Coon kitten. He was playful and curious about the world around him. The breeder was initially going to keep him for breeding but saw the instant connection between him and Kaysie. It was from that moment, Kaysie welcomed Alfie into her life.  

Kaysie’s beauty therapy is something she does from home. Having Alfie has helped both her and her clients – in the form of cat therapy. As a kitten, Alfie could sit beside Kaysie’s clients when appropriate and would happily stay there for the session.  

Now, Alfie has become a bit bigger and is no longer able to fit onto the bed the way he used to. Despite this, he always ensures that he shows some extra care to any client that he feels needs it. Simply purring while near clients can also be therapeutic for any client. Alfie has great intuition and makes sure he offers a cuddle to anyone and everyone who comes into their home.  

Having Alfie in her life, Kaysie has noticed he has had an immense impact on her. Simply knowing he is there, right by her side, has been a great comfort. Alfie is always interested in what Kaysie is doing and will happily sit next to her and watch her as she works.  

Alfie and Kaysie truly share a special bond. You can tell how much love they have for one another.  Kaysie feels Alfie has brought more happiness and calmness into her life. Just being in each other’s company brightens their day!

Alisa, Pepe and Milky — April 12, 2021

Alisa, Pepe and Milky

~ Alisa, Pepe and Milky ~

After arriving in New Zealand, Alisa wanted to welcome two cats into her family. This led to Pepe and Milky finding their forever home and Alisa finding two loving companions.  

Alisa left Russia and came to New Zealand. She lived with her husband and soon felt that they were ready to welcome two furry additions to their family. They went to the SPCA. There, Alisa met Badger, an 8-month-old black and white longhaired cat. As soon as they all met, Badger began purring and kneading Alisa. Within the hour, Badger was on his way home with Alisa. As well as a new home, Badger had a new name – Pepe.

Soon, Alisa wanted Pepe to have a friend. She was searching for a second cat to welcome into their family. Eventually, Alisa found someone who bred Burmilla cats. They met one little kitten and, once again, fell in love. Once he was old enough, Alisa was able to bring the kitten, named Milky, home.  

Both Pepe and Milky has been immensely helpful for Alisa. Whenever she is stressed, upset or feeling homesick, she knows both cats will be there for her. No matter what, they both can make Alisa laugh and find a bit of happiness each day. As well as this, both cats can make any chore a lot more entertaining with their endless antics.  

Having both Pepe and Milky has had a very positive impact on Alisa. Each day, simply from them being themselves, Alisa feels she becomes a better version of herself. She has learnt more responsibility, to be more positive and to be more caring and empathetic.  

When Alisa came to New Zealand, she felt lonely. It was difficult being in a new country and not being around her family and friends, aside from her husband of course. Once Pepe and Milky were a part of her family, she felt less alone. Having them has opened up doors to new opportunities for her and being part of a cat-loving community.  

Alisa enjoys playing with and watching Pepe and Milky when they get a hold of their toys! As well as this, the two cats are always very appreciative of any and every treat they receive. They all love to make one another happy and any time spent with Pepe and Milky always brightens Alisa’s day.  

They all obviously share a very special bond. Both Pepe and Milky have helped Alisa a lot since they all became a family. The love they share for one another is so very strong.  

Jen and Todd — April 5, 2021

Jen and Todd

~ Jen and Todd ~

Over 10 years ago, Todd was found by his forever human, Jen.  Since then, they have faced many challenges, but this has only made their bond that much stronger.  

Initially, Todd was taken in by an acquaintance of Jen. Unfortunately, he was not properly cared for and so found himself struggling with health issues. Jen then decided to help Todd. She took him to the vet and found that he had a urinary tract infection and was covered with fleas. From this, Jen knew Todd was her cat. She looked down at him and fell in love. 

Todd has helped Jen through many tough times and has made the good times better. No matter what happens in Jen’s life, she knows she has Todd right by her side. Having Todd show unconditional love has greatly improved Jen’s life. He will excitedly meet her when she returns home after being out and will happily have cuddles as often as possible.  

Everyone who knows Todd knows him to be an affectionate and relaxed cat. He loves company and whenever Jen has friends over, Todd always makes sure he introduces himself and makes them feel welcome.  

Not too long ago, Jen began leash training Todd. He very much enjoys going outside for walks and exploring with his human. When they’re not out and about, Todd enjoys playing with his many toys and sitting outside on the balcony with Jen, or simply having a good cuddle.  

Unfortunately, in August of 2020, Todd began experiencing frequent vomiting. Initially, they told Jen that Todd had pancreatitis. After medications, Todd was still showing symptoms 6 weeks later. In November, he had an ultrasound and a biopsy which revealed he had Gastrointestinal Large Cell Lymphoma – a type of cancer. 

Without receiving treatment, Todd’s prognosis was that he would survive 4 more weeks. On December 1st of 2020, which was also coincidentally their 9 year anniversary, Todd began his treatments. 50-70% of cats who undergo such treatments can respond well. However, this was a difficult time for both Jen and Todd. He has had to have many tests, treatments and medications to treat the cancer.  

As of February of 2021, Todd is considered to be in clinical full remission. This is an extremely good sign!  It means that the cancer has disappeared and, although he will continue his treatments to make sure, he can get back to being a happy and healthy cat. Despite initially having 4 weeks to live, it has now been 19 weeks and we are thrilled that he is doing better!

It is obvious how much Jen and Todd care for one another. Todd helped Jen through her difficult times, and Jen supported Todd through his cancer journey every step of the way. They share so much love for one another. They truly share such an amazing bond. 

Heart of Crystal — November 30, 2020

Heart of Crystal

~ Claudia and Crystal ~

After having gone through cancer at the young age of 3 ½, Claudia had experienced many ongoing health issues. After receiving a bone marrow transplant to treat the cancer, this luckily got rid of the cancer cells, however, left her with some nasty side effects. This has included severe skin damage, and damage to her joints, muscles and bones, which has led to her having to use a wheelchair permanently.

Amid the worst of the side effects, 9-year-old Claudia was desperate to get a cat. She was unable to do this for years as there was a risk of infection. However, as she was worsening and this was the one thing she was desperate for, the registrars finally gave her permission. Upon returning home after this, Claudia went onto the SPCA website to see which cats were currently there. One cat, in particular, stood out to her and she wrote down the information.

The very next day, Claudia and her mother went to the Auckland SPCA. Unfortunately, she had forgotten the paper she had written the information on, so they went and met all the cats at the shelter. After some time spent, Claudia met a small tuxedo cat named Marilyn. She was named this as she had a beauty spot on her cheek, as did Marilyn Monroe. The cat was timid, and had been in quarantine due to having been found with cat flu.

Claudia felt there was an unspoken bond between them both. She felt that as she had been through much herself, as had this cat, that there was a mutual understanding. It was soon decided that this little cat would become part of the family, though with a new name; Crystal.

Once they returned home, Claudia was in a lot of pain. She was crying in agony. After a few days, she found herself in bed and found it difficult to do much else. Then, Crystal, in her new environment, decided to jump onto the bed and that’s where she stayed for the next six months. She left for food and the toilet, but other than that, she remained by Claudia’s side until she was able to sit up.

During this period, Claudia had home-visiting nurses providing care. This involved changing dressings and providing intravenous (I.V.) medications. Every time this happened, Crystal was there. She would start meowing at the nurses and would try to push them away. As she heard Claudia crying, she would jump onto her lap and shoulders, purring.

Crystal would always stay by Claudia’s side. Whether undergoing treatments or experiencing pain and anxiety, Crystal was always there for Claudia. Not long after adopting Crystal, however, the medical team saw how much of an impact Crystal was having. In 2010, the two were invited to help open the Starship Hospital Cuddle Corner. This is an area in the hospital where patients can go and simply spend time with their pets.

In 2018, Claudia welcomed mobility dog, Wren, in her life. Although this was an adjustment for Crystal, both animals now enjoy spending time together. When it is cold, they enjoy snuggling up together in Wren’s bed.

It has been 11 years since adopting Crystal, and they has remained a very important part of Claudia and her family’s life. The two share a very strong bond. Claudia is now in a better state and no longer experiences the same pain or ongoing treatments. Crystal has been able to retire from her protecting duties, and now spends a lot of time playing, sleeping, and cuddling. Although, if anyone is upset, hurt, or unwell, she is there by their side to help.

Fostering During Covid — October 19, 2020

Fostering During Covid

~ Ofel and Lulu ~

In 2015, Ofel Epicorus moved to New Zealand from Israel. In 2018, since moving, she wanted to help support the SPCA by fostering cats and kittens. In early 2020 during the March COVID-19 lockdown, she was introduced to the foster kitten, Lulu.

The lockdown was a difficult time and Ofel found her mood was getting low and had feelings of anxiousness. Having Lulu allowed Ofel to focus on another living being. Lulu offered Ofel some form of relief from the stress of the unprecedented period. Lulu would bring Ofel toys so they could play fetch, and would often follow Ofel and her partner around.

Not only was Lulu able to provide Ofel with a focus during the lockdown, but she also offered comfort. Lulu would often snuggle with Ofel and enjoyed having her company. It was a great relief to Ofel. As the lockdown was a chaotic and challenging period, having Lulu meant Ofel could have some calm in her life.

Amid the lockdown, Ofel was also managing her project page, A Part of Me Project. This aims to spread awareness and break the stigma of different mental and physical health conditions. Lulu helped Ofel to not only have some relief but also in prompting her to take some time out.

When Ofel found her mood to be low during the lockdown, Lulu offered some light. One time, Lulu was meowing at Ofel. Lulu then jumped onto Ofel’s bed with a toy in her mouth. The two played fetch and Ofel found this to be something that helped her immensely during this time.

As well as this, Ofel enjoyed having snuggles with Lulu. At times when she felt anxious or down, Lulu was there to brighten her day. Whether by offering some hugs, or playing fetch, having Lulu made such a big impact on Ofel.

Soon enough, Lulu was adopted. Ofel was devastated to see her leave but was happy to have been part of Lulu’s journey in finding a forever home. Had she been able to, she would have lovingly adopted Lulu into her own home.

Although Ofel no longer has Lulu, she still fosters cats and kittens from the SPCA. Having Lulu during a time when everything was a bit chaotic had a big impact on Ofel. Lulu never failed to brighten Ofel’s day, through snuggles and games of fetch. Ofel is thrilled that Lulu found a forever home, and that she could help Lulu in the journey of finding it.