So that's how we got ourselves a cat. A witty coworker of mine suggested we name him Ocho, since he used up one of his nine lives and was left with eight. This struck us as brilliant, and Ocho he is. (He may actually be down to Cinco now, but I'm trying not to count.)
After a brief period of adjustment to being sans tail, Ocho made a full recovery and has been a great pet. I truly believe that he knows we (well, my husband) rescued him, and is deeply grateful—a gratitude he unfortunately likes to express in the form of dead birds. Le sigh.
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I'm sure you won't be surprised that this incident made me fall even more into love and respect for my husband. Lots of men love dogs, lots of men are animal people. But few men will put themselves on the line, on the way to work in a freshly pressed button down, no less, for a tiny fuzz ball feline, just because it was helpless and needed them. But that's the kind of guy my husband is, which is one of the reasons I knew he would be a stellar father.
Oh, and for the record, he has been an amazing cat dad ever since. He tackles litter box duty. When the cat head-butts me in the middle of the night, wanting some affection, my husband will yank him over to his side of the bed and pet him so I can grumble myself back to sleep. And I have never once had to drive that animal to the vet.
That's exactly how he is with the kids, too. He takes responsibility for their care without me having to ask him to. He jumps in on bathtime and doctor's appointments. He cuddles the one with the boo-boo when my hands are full with another one. And there is never any childcare-related duty that he has shrugged off as not being his job. Gah, he's amazing.
So ladies, if you're curious about the kind of dad your beau will be? Watch how he treats animals. It isn't a foolproof test, but in my case, it surely revealed what a catch I'd landed.
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Has this held true for any of you? Is your guy's treatment of animals a parallel for the kind of man or dad he is?