Happy Tails: Linus and Casper (formerly Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert)

Liz K, a teacher, is the sole female in the house she shares with six adventurous males: her husband, three sons, and two young cats.

Among the many kittens born in Toronto in 2015 was the litter of a feral mother living in the city’s east end. Vanessa (Colony Coordinator) and Robin (trapper) caught two 7-week-old kittens in August — they went to a preliminary home where they were named Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert. Kitten #3 (John Oliver) was caught at the beginning of September, and Kitten #4 (TrevorNoah) was trapped quite late (14-weeks-old) and had to be in “rehab” for a while to be socialized.

Two of the tiny kitten brothers, a black one and a black-and-white one, went to stay with Erin and Michael, experienced ACR fosters, who found the guys initially very timid, as newcomer cats tend to be. But they soon became confidently super-playful and silly … which may account for their original names.

John Oliver  and Stephen Colbert

Then, when the kittens were 12 weeks old, themselves vetted and neutered via ACR, along came Liz and her men, who all immediately fell in love with the lively bonded pair and absolutely had to adopt them.

Linus and Casper

After three days of cautionary hiding out in the basement, the newly named Linus and Casper eagerly joined in their forever home’s festive mayhem. “They’re the sweetest cats,” says Liz, “and I can’t believe how well it’s gone. They’re real companions for our sons, who are nine, 11, and 14. When the kids arrive home after racing about playing, biking, hanging out, whatever they’ve been up to, the cats actually run to the door to greet them.” But the now-year-old kitties also provide calm and comfort: “They’re often curled up on one of us, or snuggled with their paws wrapped around each other in drawers, in laundry baskets, on chairs, etc. The cats have really softened the house,” she observes, “and have given the boys, whose lives are full of competition and action, some gentle creatures to love and care for as well as play with.”

Even outnumbered, Liz probably couldn’t imagine a better household arrangement.

— Alison Reid

(Kittens’ photos: Raven Sun)

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