ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Rescued Pets - The Cat Rules the Roost

Updated on April 27, 2016
RedElf profile image

Elle Fredine (RedElf), fan of responsible pet care, supporter of pet neutering/spaying and no-kill shelters

Mr. Murphy - rescue cat extraordinaire - sitting calmly in his armchair. I can see him plotting right now. All the outward signs point to it - the oh-so-innocent expression, the insouciant, almost lazy curl of the tail, the ultra-relaxed posture. That cat is definitely up to something.

Cat lovers, or cat-staff, as we are sometimes affectionately called, will know exactly what I mean. We have come to recognize the signs only too well. Dog-lovers among you may be puzzled, and wondering if I am developing a phobia, or am leaning towards paranoia, having lived too long among felines. That's as may be, however, it does not alter the fact that Mr. Murphy is definitely planning some mischief.

Who? Me?

Photos by author
Photos by author

He's up to something...

There go the ears - flicking forward, back and...ha! There goes my pencil, along with the grocery list and my glasses case...and there goes Murphy, chasing the pencil down the hallway. I knew he was after something on the coffee table.

Mr. Murphy, also known as Mr. Murphies , Murphies , and you rotten kitty is certainly a character. The phrase, "Where's you ?" when uttered by my step-daughter, his chief staff, brings an instant response. Murphy miraculously appears from who-knows-where, to twine around her legs, chirruping melodically, and begging for the treats he knows he is about to receive.

Mr. Murphy calls a meeting...

OK, you guys settle down. Let's get this meeting started...
OK, you guys settle down. Let's get this meeting started...
What did the staff say about Vet appointments?
What did the staff say about Vet appointments?
Oh, those dogs go ON and ON about their bones!
Oh, those dogs go ON and ON about their bones!
Enough with the tail-chasing, you guys... OK, that's it - I'm outta here!
Enough with the tail-chasing, you guys... OK, that's it - I'm outta here!

Unless he's sleeping...

Mr. Murphies is now the proud owner of three staff, since I came to live with my kids in Northern Alberta. He is now also the proud owner of two dogs, and though he is definitely the boss he graciously shares his domain.

Sometimes, when the new dog's sister visits, he owns three dogs. What new dog, you ask? Well that's quite a story.

I am not at all sure that Murphy is thrilled about the three dogs. He seemed perfectly happy, or at least contented, with only one. My kids had other ideas, though - or at least, the new doggy did.

It all started innocently enough. My daughter-in-law was searching for a new watch-puppy for her mother, who is going deaf.

Their beloved family pet, Dukie, who warned them of intruders, and barked when the phone rang, had finally passed on, and Ma and Poppa, as my daughter-in-law calls her parents, were devastated. So their girl began a search of S.P.C.A.s and animal shelters in our area.

After several months of searching online, phone calls, and visits to meet prospective pets, our girl came home one day and phoned her husband.

He was already on the road, but she needed him to think about a very important question. "Would he really start divorce proceedings if she brought home another dog?"

As simple enough question, one would think.

Peace River No-Kill Shelter

Peace River S.P.C.A.:
9510 94 Ave, Peace River, AB T8S 1J1, Canada

get directions

Lady at about 10 weeks

All photos by Elle Fredine
All photos by Elle Fredine
Click thumbnail to view full-size
Hi there!You wanna play with me?Awww...c'mon...
Hi there!
Hi there!
You wanna play with me?
You wanna play with me?

Two + two = Chaos...

The dutiful daughter had indeed found a new "watch-puppy" for her parents - Lady, as she was soon named - for her looks, not her behavior - was the sweetest little doggy imaginable. Though her contact at the shelter - the S.P.C.A. runs a no-kill shelter in Peace River - thought she was a Terrier, Dachshund, and possibly something-else cross, we were pretty sure there was a strong line of Cocker Spaniel in her, too.

Her head and her black, wavy, soft and silky fur are pure "cocker", but her body, particularly her hind-quarters, definitely conform to the dachshund physiology. Her personality is one-of-a-kind, though. She loves everybody, and joyously bounces up to meet and greet every person and creature she meets.

...and when I say bounce , I really mean bounce. Lady almost levitates off those muscular, doxie hindquarters, her little pink tongue lolling out and her soft ears flapping up and down.

Mr Murphies was not so happy to be met by the bouncing baby doggie. He was even less enchanted with puppy's sister, who came as part of the package.

When the dutiful daughter found Lady, she also met another little doggie, Lady's older sister - who timidly approached her and, as my daughter-in-law put it, "She looked at me and her eyes told me, 'I'm a good doggie, too - can I be your doggie?'" Well, how could anyone turn that down?

So home came Lady and big sister, who stayed with us, and became Bella .

Lady and Bella (foreground)

Lady and Bella (foreground)
Lady and Bella (foreground)


Our little Bella was very shy when she first came to live with us. The shelter had spayed her and reassured us that her shots were up to date. Raised in the same puppy mill from which Lady and a dozen other small dogs had been rescued, Bella weighed barely 7 pounds when we first brought her home. Our vet guesstimated her age between one and three years of age, and told us she had born several litters of pups already.

Ours was a very busy household for those first weeks until little Lady went off to her new home. With three dogs, one mildly fussed cat and a small house, we were a bit pressed for space. It's amazing how much room a small puppy can take up with her toys. As well, until the new dog and puppy were completely house trained, my daughter-in-law slept on a blow-up bed on the living room floor, so she could hear the critters and let them out every time one of them squeaked.

Thank goodness that phase only lasted a few weeks.

By the third week, Bella would run and play with Lady, but was still very timid with men - every time my son spoke, and he is very soft-spoken, Bella would flatten herself on the floor, shivering. The end of the month brought a different story, though. Our girl's weight had doubled, and you could no longer feel every bone and sinew in her neck when you petted her.

Bella has continued to improve, and is now quite playful with the other pets. Her favorite toy is anything that squeaks - she loves squeaky toys.

All our pets are rescued - either from our vet, or the local shelter. They are all sweet-natured, and know they are loved, and more importantly, that they are owned .

Oh, and the ruling the roost part - Mr. Murphy is definitely the boss cat of the house. He comes and yells at my door in the morning to make sure I am up on time to get breakfast for the cat, and to let the dogs out. My son refers to him as the dogs' lawyer , as he runs interference for the "girls" if we are not being attentive enough to their needs.

...and he definitely has first choice of the comfy chairs...

...of, course, now he has to share the chair with Bella sometimes...

Click thumbnail to view full-size
See - we both fit...Snuggle buddies
See - we both fit...
See - we both fit...
Snuggle buddies
Snuggle buddies

Rescued Pets

Would you consider adopting a rescued pet?

See results

Passing of a good friend

Since this was first published, Mr. Murphy has passed over the Rainbow Bridge. We were so sad to lose him, and Bella was bereft for a time. Now, though, another rescue pet has come to brighten our lives - more about her another time.

Whether you would take in a rescued pet is entirely a matter of choice and taste, but I know this family will always head to the nearest shelter before we'd darken the door of a pet shop. Every pet who has adopted us has been a real character and has added great joy to our lives during whatever time they have spent with us.

One caveat

Of course, there's always one critter who proves the exception, rather than the rule, as evidenced in the clip below...

© 2010 RedElf


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • RedElf profile imageAUTHOR


      2 months ago from Canada

      Thanks so much Peggy. Glad you enjoyed the story. Mr. Murphy was a real character, and still missed. Though the new (also rescued) kitty is certainly making herself a place in our hearts.

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 

      2 months ago from Houston, Texas

      All of our pets have been rescues from one source or another. Both of our cats came to us from the streets. Each one of them has added so much to our lives. Your story was great and your photos are wonderful. Sorry that Mr. Murphy has now crossed over that rainbow bridge. He will now live forever in your mind and heart as will ours who have similarly crossed that bridge.

    • RedElf profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from Canada

      Thanks so much, DA - always appreciate a good review from an expert :D

    • David Alderson profile image

      David Alderson 

      7 years ago from Cat Lovers, Indiana

      I came from a shelter but was adopted by my people right away. I'm sure it was that sad look and neck cuddle I gave them that got them hooked. I am the master of charm. This is a great article that I could identify with.....

    • RedElf profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from Canada

      The third dog is my son's pooch. She is getting on in years, but definitely as "Daddy's girl." She is a mostly white cross-breed known as Upsi Muskwa, or Little Bear. She, too, is a rescue dog.

    • jantamaya profile image

      Maria Janta-Cooper 

      7 years ago from UK

      Elle, I absolutely love Lady (!), Mr. Murphy is funny and Bella cute, but what about the third dog ??? You've written that partly in your family, there were three dogs and Mr. Murphy. Is it right, or ...? Sorry that I'm asking, I only would like to know the third dog too :-)Because he/she feels so 'left over', you know?

    • RedElf profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from Canada

      Thanks so much, epigramman! Happy New Year to you and yours - Little Miss Tiffy and Mister Gabriel first and foremost, of course. You are too kind - I just love to write poetry, and you really have inspired me to write another "poetical" hub :D

    • epigramman profile image


      7 years ago

      ..well hello my fellow Canadian (that's Lake Erie in Ontario behind me which unfortunately is covered right now with snow and ice) ...thank you so much for that positively poetic and glowing review over at my humble hubspace - and I must say I really enjoyed this story because I am the housekeeper and bread winner for my two cats (and best friends) Little Miss Tiffy and Mister Gabriel who prefer to spend most of their time indoors at this time of year in front of the blowing gas heat!

      Please allow me to wish you Happy New Year with much happiness and health and I can see why you have attained

      elite status - you have a wonderful array of subjects to choose from - and that reminds me of only one word: hubtastic!!!!!

    • RedElf profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from Canada

      Thanks so much for stopping by to comment, anna! Murphy is quite a character!

    • annmackiemiller profile image


      7 years ago from Bingley Yorkshire England

      wonderful story

    • RedElf profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from Canada

      Kitties have a way of doing that, don't they, rlw? Thanks so much for stopping by to comment.

    • rwelton profile image


      7 years ago from Sacramento CA

      Great post - pet-less for years - until new rescue kitten allowed us to feed and provide shelter for her. New house rules in effect and it is an ongoing debate as who is training and who is getting trained...


    • RedElf profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from Canada

      Yes - it turned out to be not such a hard question after all, hubpageswriter ;)

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      So enlightening, pictures are cute. Quoting form your hub: "Would he really start divorce proceedings if she brought home another dog?" - Easy question, tough answer.

    • RedElf profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from Canada

      Hey, thanks so much, CP - so glad your Jasper came home safely. We loves our pets!

      FP - greetings - so nice of you to stop by and comment! He does his best, but those dogs get totally out of hand sometimes :D They are all great photo subjects;)

    • profile image

      Feline Prophet 

      7 years ago

      Mr. Murphy looks likes he runs a tight ship! Love all the pix - feline and canine! :)

    • Christopher Price profile image

      Christopher Price 

      7 years ago from Vermont, USA

      RedElf, I always knew you were OK, but anyone who lives with a houseful of rescue animals is my kinda people!

      This is our cat Jasper's first full winter as he was just an indoor kitten until late spring. One night last week he asked to go out after it had snowed an inch or so. By morning we had over a half a foot of snow and Jasper hadn't returned. He went missing for 5 days, during which I imagined numerous scenarios as to how he may have met his end...sometimes you are the hunter, sometimes the hunted.

      Then, one day after my wife had gone from door to door asking neighbors if they had seen him, Jasper showed up on the portch, none the worse for wear...and very glad to be home.

      I'll bet he had been driving some family nutz loudly protesting his unfamiliar surroundings and they were turned him loose after learning he had a home to reurn to.

      Having him jump into my arms to be cradled and stroked is the best present I could have recieved this Christmas. The furry little darlings sure do capture your heart don't they?

      Happy Holidays.


    • RedElf profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from Canada

      Oh, Dolores, somehow that little waif was put in your way - you needed that kitty as much as kitty needed you ;) I am so glad your kitty's rescue story ended well, too.

      Nice to see you friend Hh - thanks for stopping by to comment.

    • Hello, hello, profile image

      Hello, hello, 

      7 years ago from London, UK

      That is a great hub and thank you for sharing.

    • Dolores Monet profile image

      Dolores Monet 

      7 years ago from East Coast, United States

      There is nothing like a rescued pet! I never wanted a cat, never expected to own a cat. But when we found a little kitten, half starved and mewing its little head off on a dark and stormy night, we suddenly had ourselves a cat. I have often wondered how a 5 week old kitten could have been thrust outdoors alone, and what would have happened to him if we had not picked him up that night. His appearance in our home has been a blessing for all of us!

    • RedElf profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from Canada

      That's what I think too - there are so many dogs and cats I can't help - why not take in at least one or two when I can? :D:D

    • 2besure profile image

      Pamela Lipscomb 

      7 years ago from Charlotte, North Carolina

      All my cat have been rescue cats. With the pet overpopulation, that is the only way to go as far as I am concerned.

    • RedElf profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from Canada

      Thanks so much, princess! Great to meet another Albertan!

      Scribenet, I think you have the right of it - probably the treats are more of a motivator ;)

      Thanks for stopping by to comment arthurchappell! All of ours are certainly characters!

      Thanks so much, Gus! So pleased you enjoyed reading about the critters!

      leni, I'm sure he'll stop pouting once the floors are all done ;) he sounds like a lovely kitty.

      Thanks so much, Pam - rescued pets bring so much into our lives - it's incredible to me that they were almost discarded.

    • prairieprincess profile image

      Sharilee Swaity 

      7 years ago from Canada

      Mr. Murphy is absolutely adorable! I fell in love with him through this hub. Your household sounds like it's very busy and has lots of love.

      Very well-written hub, with an exceptionally engaging style. Loved!

      Side note: I know Peace River quite well, used to go through there all the time, and have a good friend there.

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 

      7 years ago

      We got our cat from a rescue shelter when he was 3 months old and I have never had a cat as lovable and fun as him. Pets add so much to the family even if they are a little work. Great hub and lady is a beauty.

    • leni sands profile image

      Leni Sands 

      7 years ago from UK

      I really enjoyed reading this. What a wonderful story, family, host of pets, sounds like a wonderful life. I have a rescue cat and he definitely rules the roost. I will probably share his story one day. He is a bit down in the mouth at the moment because we are decorating and about to varnish the floors so he's stuck in the kitchen for a few days.

      Anyway I clicked on all the appropriate buttons and voted it up! Thanks for sharing.

    • GusTheRedneck profile image

      Gustave Kilthau 

      7 years ago from USA

      RedElf - Great critter story. I really enjoyed reading it.

      Gus :-)))

    • arthurchappell profile image


      7 years ago from Manchester, England

      interesting characters among the animals at the shelter - cool article. Cheers.

    • Scribenet profile image


      7 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Aww...I just love a rescue story and they are all so cute! i can sure understand about Mr.Murphie waking you up...mine wakes me up on weekends and I am certain he wants me to go to work...well, maybe he wants the treats that go with the routine of me going to work!


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)