Meet Ishmael!

Name: Ishmael, Issy, Admiral Pusskin, El Fluff, The Boy

Breed: Maine Coon Cat

Likes: To be petted, brushed, combed or otherwise pampered. To initiate conversations. To snooze at various times in various places including hallways, doorways, soft rugs, hard floors, sofas, even his own cat mat and cat bed. To “herd” his Man Servant toward the kitchen at meal times. To welcome visitors with the affable charm of a Wal-Mart Greeter. To commandeer his Man ServantÕs bed at night, tickling his face with tail fur or whiskers, and licking his nose.

And how is your day?

Dislikes: To be hand-carried for distances exceeding seven feet. To be taken on car trips, especially to the vet. To be on the receiving end of any medication.

About Ishmael: Elizabeth, a compassionate cat lover, rescued Ishmael (and named him) in the spring of 2006 when she found him roaming the wilds of Deer Isle, Maine. He was blind in his left eye, and somewhat the worse for wear. She took Ishmael for a checkup to the local vet, who determined that he was roughly 12 years old and tested positive for Feline HIV which can be transmitted cat-to-cat by bites. Elizabeth already had three cats at her Deer Isle home, and decided to sequester them indoors and keep Ishmael outdoors, where he could forage for moles, voles and other wildlife from a base of operations on her porch. In the fall, with bitter winter weather approaching, she desperately sought a snug indoor home for this special-needs feline. As a last resort, her soft-hearted tenant from Washington, D.C. volunteered to adopt Ishmael and take him home to his cat-less condo in the nation’s capital.

It was a long drive from Deer Isle to D.C. last October, and Ishmael expressed his discontent throughout the journey. Could this rugged outdoorsman ever adapt to urban apartment life?

In fact, Ishmael made the transition to being a Cozy Condo Cat so readily as to stir belief that he had been someone’s beloved indoor cat in one or more of his mysterious prior lives. Had he been inadvertently left behind or deliberately turned loose on Deer Isle by previous owners?Ê The soft-hearted tenant who has become his Man Servant can only speculate.

Photo Credit: Claudia Goldstein