American Shorthair

Overall satisfaction


Acquired: Other (stray, given cat by friend etc.)

Gender: Male





Friendly with owners


Good with dogs




Appropriate vocalization






Easy to groom


Need for attention


Gizmo / Orange Tabby


New York, United States

Posted Sep 19, 2015

In high school, while I was working at a pet store, a guy came into the store with a flea-ridden, eyes-infected, orange tabby kitten that nose to tail was about the size of a baseball, who he had found abandoned. Once we had explained and started rounding up the necessary items to clean and treat and nurse the little guy, he said he had to go get his girlfriend from the car, since he was to be her cat. We never saw him again; and that is how I adopted my cat, Gizmo.
Despite have been literally born in a gutter, and having to overcome fleas, worms, eye infections, eye-creams and eye-droppers of antibiotics, not to mention being removed from whatever natural defenses a newborn would receive being nursed by its mother, he has grown and thrived and led a pretty good life. Actually, he may have thrived a bit too much. I’m ashamed to say that he’s a bit overweight now, but he’s on a diet (again), so his weight should slowly be getting closer to ten pound range he used to be.
Being very young, I had to litter-train him, which turned out to be surprisingly easy. I waited for him to wake up, and as soon as he started circling, I picked him up and put him in his litter box. It took a few instances, but he caught on extremely quickly for being so young and started seeking out his litter box.
Like most cats, as far as Gizmo is concerned, it’s his world and you’re just living in it. He’s always been a little goofy, as if he’s just a little drunk all the time, but I think that might be more his personality then a breed specific trait. While he may look at you when you call his name, he will not come; he will sleep whenever and wherever he pleases, and you will sleep when he allows it and as long as it does not coincide with his feeding times. Over the years, we’ve established a good relationship in that I’ll rub just behind his ears along his jaw, right where his likes it and he’ll acknowledge my existence.
He has short hair but it is thick, and he sheds hard no matter how well or often you brush him. At one point the fur along his back did mat very badly, and we had to resort to cutting it down. He was a little embarrassed about that, so it is important to regularly brush them, as much for their good as to protect your clothes and furniture.
I made the mistake of waiting to have him neutered. A cat spraying is not an odor you would like to be familiar with, nor is it one you ever truly feel you’ve gotten rid of no matter how many times you’ve washed the spot. I’d recommend having this done as soon as possible to avoid that unpleasantness.

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