I’m super excited to announce that today’s Cat Man Monday is Jay. Don’t recognize the name? You’ll most certainly know his cat’s name: Hamilton. Hamilton the Hipster Cat to be exact, with a perfectly shaped mustache that made him an internet sensation. Jay is a super guy, adopting Hammy – what Jay often calls him – when others might not have. Here’s the story of Jay’s love of cats and how Hammy came into his life! Enjoy!
I’ve had cats in my family for as long as I can remember. One of my first memories was opening a box on Christmas Eve and having a grey and white cat jump out. I named him Bubbles, and my lifelong love of cats began. Honestly, I love all animals, but there’s something special about cats. It may be their ambivalence that makes the times they do show us affection mean that much more.
I’ve had all types of cats from super loving and cuddly, to those you barely know live in your home until its time to eat. And I always seemed to have a connection with all of them. I credit it to my belief as a child that I was Dr. Dolittle – that and my ability to give one hell of a cat massage.
After I graduated and moved out on my own, I knew it was only a matter of time until I was going to adopt a cat of my own. That finally happened in September 2012 when I found Hamilton.
For years I would stop in at shelters to play with the kittens and cats. The day I went to the The Humane Society I wasn’t sure if I was going to adopt or not. I’ve always had male cats, so that’s what I went to see. That day they had only two male cats up for adoption – Coconut and Hamilton (Hamilton’s his shelter name was actually Ferdinand).
Coconut was a typical playful, loving kitten who immediately ran up to my shoulder and started rubbing up against my face and couldn’t stop purring. Hammy was the exact opposite. Turns out he was a feral who was found by a volunteer and brought to the shelter. I was told he was skittish, scared and hissed at anybody who got within 5 feet of him.
Since he was one of the two male cats there, I asked to see him. As soon as the volunteer handed him to me Hamilton calmed down. He became relaxed like a ragdoll. I flipped him upside down and he fell asleep in my hands.
The volunteer told me that since he was so shy there was a chance he might not be adopted since most people are looking for the Coconut-type personality. That information coupled with the connection I had with baby Hammy sealed the deal for me.
I had to have a special consultation with a behaviorist before I was able to leave with him. They explained that it would be a challenge, and how to get him used to my house. Long story short, he lived in my bathroom for a month and was scared anytime anyone went near him.
Then one night he started meowing at 4am. I opened the door, and he came walking out on his own. That night he moved from the bathroom into my closet for the next month. By the end of that month he had decided it was time for him to take rightful ownership of the whole house.
Everyday he became more comfortable, and we developed a pretty awesome friendship. Now he’s more loving than any cat I’ve ever had. The volunteers told me that when you do finally warm-up a feral cat the bond is all the more special – they were right. Anytime I am home Hammy is right by my side. He is a super fun, playful and unique cat and I couldn’t ask for a better companion.
I’m sure people are interested in his rise to fame. That part just kind of happened. I woke up every morning and his mustache made me smile. I decided since he brought a smile to my face, I should share him with the world. I started an Instagram account for him and it took off on it’s own.
I’m very thankful for the followers we have because it has afforded us the opportunity to spread the word about cat adoption. We’ve been fortunate enough to be able to help many shelters around the country and my hope is that we can continue on this path.