Linked to three other cats
Cassiopeia is a very prominent and easily found constellation in the northern sky. Depicting a sideways “W” or “M”, depending upon the time of year, it contains many deep sky objects. More importantly to me, a star is used in it as a pointer to the Andromeda Galaxy.
I didn’t mean to keep her, honestly. Pegasus and Cepheus had come to me with their mom, Charlotte, in April 2003, to be fostered. Pegasus and Cepheus were each three weeks old. Two weeks later, Charlotte had decided she no longer wanted to nurse, as they had grown teeth, and Cepheus had died. The poor little guy developed diabetic ketoacidosis and couldn’t be saved. He was the first pet under my care who had passed. I was devastated. Charlotte had gone to live with another foster parent, so it was just Pegasus and I. Well, and Andromeda and Virgo, but they were much older and not interested in the kitten. Pegasus was terribly lonely, and we bonded over the week he was without playmates.
It is not good to have kittens alone, though. The pet rescue organization, New Beginnings for Animals in South Orange County, California, split another litter of kittens and gave me three. Cassiopeia, then named Madison, was one of them. Pegasus now had three play mates.
The time came, at the end of June 2003, to place the kittens for adoption. Pegasus and I had become so close, I decided to keep him. The other three were placed at the PetSmart in Aliso Viejo, and arrangements were made for their new pet parents to come get them. To prevent loneliness, the kittens all shared the same cage. Well, one set of parents flaked out. Cassiopeia was left alone in the cage over the 3 day 4th of July weekend. This was not good. I happened into PetSmart, and ran into Jane, the co-founder of New Beginnings. She asked me if, since I’d been Madison’s foster mom, could I take her home, just until new pet parents could be found. I, of course, agreed.
Within five minutes of getting Madison home and placing her little cardboard pet carrier on the floor, Pegasus had licked her, bit her, sniffed her, wrestled with her, humped her and chased her. I just stood there, watching all this, and said to myself, “I think I now have four cats.” She was renamed Cassiopeia, to conform with the naming convention in my home and the rest is history.
The Golden Child
Until the past several months, Cassi was the Golden Child cat. She was never a lick of trouble and, although she talked, she was pretty quiet and never had any vet bills.
Alas, she is now 16.5 and the last of the four “Boogie Children.” Over the past 2.5 years, Pegasus, Virgo, and Andromeda all went to The Rainbow Bridge. Cassi has become annoyingly loud, which I finally surmised was due to arthritis. Once I started mixing up some “joint compound” into her food (more on that later), she has quieted down, and I can hear my head rattle once again.
Outside of the arthritis, she seems to have no other health issues. Pegasus died at 13.5, Virgo at 16, and Andromeda at at least 19 years, 3 months. Perhaps Cassiopeia will live the longest of all of them.