As I was getting my emissions inspection, the man finishing up the test and giving me my certificate asked for my business card. He pointed to my “IsYourPetFoodSafe.com” vinyl in the back window and said that he did feral cat rescue.
I immediately knew that meant he had many cats, and of course, he told me the number. He had a LOT of cats.
It costs a lot to feed those cats and since the employment sign said that these workers started at $ 9 an hour, I knew he wouldn’t ever become a customer. This food is too expensive for someone feeding a couple of dozen cats. My own food and litter bill is around $ 600. I can afford it. I earn it from this business and I also have a very handsome day job income.
I offered to stop by the next day with a large bag of Life’s Abundance so all of his kitties could sample it. It was my last bag and my shipment wasn’t due in until the next week, so as I drove away, I kicked myself.
But I had read a scriptural thought that morning where “the gift without the giver is bare” and how you’re not supposed to give “grudgingly”, because if you do, it’s like not giving at all.
So I softened my heart and went to his house with that precious last bag of cat food. And I pictured how delighted his kitties would be to eat it, and how happy he would be for the company.
Let me just say that, on visiting with him in his trailer home, which by the way contained a beautiful grand piano and an organ, it seemed that he was lonely and fragile and overwhelmed with the care of so many kitties, and yet they brought him joy and companionship. He picked up each one and told me how he’d found it and tamed it down. As ferals ran across his porch, he would call my attention to them.
He was about 64, I think he said, and just working for two more years until he could get his Social Security and move to where he has land in another state and just live with his kitties and never be bothered by animal control ever again. (Because they’d many times inspected his place and threatened to take his kitties).
Since then, I’ve watched for $ 10 large bags of 9-Lives and Friskies and I’ve picked up broken donated bags of food at my veterinary clinic and dropped them by his house. I haven’t been able to stay and visit, which is probably what he needs the most.
But if in this business it’s all me-me-me and we don’t make room for the charitable moments, there really is no point being in business in the first place, is there?