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Journey to a 4-Cat Parade: How Many "No More Cats" Did It Take?

Journey to a 4-Cat Parade: How Many "No More Cats" Did It Take?

Had he known what a cat-tastic adventure we’d unleash when moving to the country, it’s possible my husband would never have agreed to it.  Here’s how, despite his “No More Cats” request, our family stumbled into the delightful chaos of one new cat after another. 

When we found our home in the Shenandoah Valley, our pet family had dwindled to a record low of old lady cat Aretha and Amber the Poodle.

“Just because we’re moving to the country,”  Ryan said,  “it doesn’t mean we’re getting more pets. No more cats.”

I reluctantly agreed. After all, the house needed work & we were about to have another baby.

But during our home inspection, the owner said his cat was going to the shelter. I looked at Ryan, and with his silent agreement, I asked that Hidey convey with the house. After all, she had just lost her human mom - she shouldn’t lose her home, too.

Hidey Cat conveyed with the Janery House


“No more cats,” Ryan emphasized upon move-in.

Hidey eventually adapted to our bustling household, and then we lost Aretha to cancer in April of 2020.

A few weeks later I spotted a starving, bedraggled cat slinking up our driveway, searching for food under cover of darkness. Slowly we gained his trust - after all, we were in lockdown and always home. And we had food.

KG eased into our home and melted our hearts.

Janery Pet Beds KG Cat Rescued during pandemic


“That’s enough, no more cats now,” my husband reminded me. And I agreed.

But the universe had other plans.

One unseasonably freezing morning at the end of September, I took the scenic route home from school drop off. Frost sparkled on the grass and colorful leaves were beginning to crown the trees.

Along a secluded section of the river, I spotted a peculiar sight that made me do a double-take: A cardboard box, a scrap of blanket, and a tiny black kitten.

I couldn't believe my eyes. I turned the car around, parked in an unofficial spot, and approached the kitten cautiously.

Janery Pet Beds Gigi Cat Found at the river


Once I’d scooped him up he began to purr and sneeze. My heart broke - the temps had been in the 20’s overnight, and this kitten was clearly sick.

I brought him into the car to warm him up, and as he explored the dashboard (still purring) I texted a “guess what” photo to my husband and his family.

They thought I was joking since we’d just welcomed KG into our family.

I took the pathetic little kitten straight to my husband’s home office. As Ryan swiveled around from his computer, I placed the little rumbling ball of fur in his lap. The kitten curled up and turned his crusty little eyes towards Ryan. The rumbling purr got louder.

Darn it, Jane,” he said with a smile.

With the exception of a vet visit, Gigi the kitten spent the entire work day in Ryan’s lap.

And just like that, we had three cats, defying Ryan's earlier declaration.

No more cats, Jane,” he repeated for good measure.

And I was done. Really.

But on my scenic route the next morning, I paused to chat with neighbors, only to learn there was a timid orange kitten abandoned in the same spot by the river.

Janery Trapping Juicy Cat Found dumped at the river


After a series of hours culminating in a 40-minute drive to buy a cat trap, I got the (also sick) orange kitten to the vet right before closing. I assured Ryan we wouldn't be keeping Juicy the orange kitten.

My determination wavered as we witnessed a happy reunion between Gigi and Juicy. Over the next week we realized they were a bonded pair.

At 10 months old, the kittens were full of that kitten energy that can wreck a home. But as brothers, they exhausted that energy playing together, then curling up to snooze together.

Before long, Ryan reluctantly agreed that we were now a 4 Cat Family.

Janery Pet Beds Juicy Gigi Bonded Pair of Kittens


Ironically, Juicy became Ryan's cat, embodying his stoic yet loving demeanor. Ryan now proudly calls Juicy his "favorite son," a title that wouldn't exist if I hadn't pushed the boundaries of our cat quota.

The girls fell in love with the kittens, while I fell in love with the pitter-patter of a four-cat parade at mealtime. And Ryan’s silent affection for all the cats is visible.


"No more cats, Jane," Ryan insists.


But I can't resist teasing Ryan that if I had been stopped from rescuing, Juicy wouldn't be here to claim the title of “favorite son.”


Ryan has since taken over the morning school runs. And he never takes the scenic route . . .

Janery Pet Beds Three Cat Family Cat Rescue Story