Tigre, The Cat Who Picked My Husband


As a veterinarian, I usually adopt the hard luck cases.  Animals that I affectionately refer to as “medical rejects”.  After our beloved cat died, my husband and I drove to the Arizona Humane Society to adopt a cat named Cuddles.  Someone tried to kill him by crushing his skull.  The sweet cat survived the ordeal although his face was grossly disfigured.  As long as his blood tests came back negative, he would be joining our family.

Unfortunately, Cuddles tested positive for corona virus.  We could not adopt him and risk exposing our other cat Genny.  Instead Tigre joined our family.  Tigre was a patient at the Arizona Humane Society’s Second Chance Hospital.  The poor cat suffered a large wound that penetrated deep into the muscles along his spinal column.  The outline of the wound resembled the profile of a knife.  Thanks to the great care provided by Dr. Croteau and his foster family, Tigre made a complete recovery.  He arrived for his final checkup the day we went to adopt Cuddles.  He took one look at us and decided that we should adopt him.  He stuck his paw through the bars of his hospital cage, tapped Steve on the shoulder and meowed.  Talk about persuasive.  Tigre stole our hearts in less than five minutes.

Tigre blossomed into a handsome cat with a friendly personality.  I like to describe him as a “pack cat”.  He always wants to have someone around.  If he can’t get human attention, he seeks out Susie for some canine company.  Sometimes he wonders into another room and begins to cry loudly.  I respond with “Tigre, we’re in here buddy.  We didn’t leave.  You did, remember?”  He follows my voice back into the room, happy as a clam to have “found” his people again.  Although he is not the brightest bulb on the tree, he is certainly the most grateful.  

In my experience, adult animals that have gone throught a shelter experience are especially grateful for a permanent home.  If you are considering adding a new animal member to your family, I encourage you to  adopt an adult from your local shelter or rescue group.  Please pay special attention to the older animals that aren’t as “adoptable” as the youngsters.  They will shower you with love and affection in return.

P.S.:  Cuddles found a permanent home shortly after we adopted Tigre.

Published by kristennelsondvm

Dr. Kristen Nelson grew up on a farm in Watertown, Minn., where she developed a deep love for animals of all kinds. She received a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from the University of Minnesota, College of Veterinary Medicine. Kris then completed a small-animal internship at the prestigious Animal Medical Center in New York City. In addition to writing and speaking, she cares for small and exotic animals in Scottsdale, Az. Dr. Nelson is widely quoted in the media. Her credits include Ladies’ Home Journal, USA TODAY, the Los Angeles Times and numerous radio and television interviews. Dr. Nelson has written two books, Coated With Fur: A Vet’s Life and Coated With Fur: A Blind Cat’s Love. Kris and her husband Steve share their home with rescued cats, birds and a dog.