Monday, March 19, 2012


Here's the story, how I know it. 
I work for King County Solid Waste as the dispatcher for the trucks.  On Thursday, March 7th, one of the drivers, Don, calls me to ask for the phone number of the gal that manages the stray cats up here at the landfill.  I told him she was downtown working today, and wasn't available.  He then told me about a stray cat at our Bowlake Transfer Station.  A gray cat had been brought to the Scalehouse by one of the contractors working there.  The contractor told the scale Operators the cat had come right up to him, meowing.  He was a very friendly cat.  The Scale Operator didn't want anything to do with him, though.  So, the contractor left the cat in the area and went back to work.  That was when Don came by in his tractor-trailer rig.  He stopped and went over to the cat, who was sitting on a wall.  The cat meowed very insistently. Don fed him some meatballs.  The cat was very appreciative - you see, the cat looked to be starving to death.  That's when Don  called me and asked me what I thought he should do.  I didn't like the idea of the cat hanging about the scalehouse, with all the traffic going in and out of there.  I told Don that when he got back I would have found a cardboard box and some food so he could catch the cat.  (I didn't realize at the time how friendly he was).
So Don came back to the landfill, dumped his load and headed back for another, armed with a box and cat food.

Don sent me this picture after he had picked up the cat on his return trip.  He said the cat wouldn't stay in the box.  Like I said, he was a very friendly, social and appreciative cat.

When he got back here, he handed me the cat and said he had named him Bentley.  He was the thinnest creature I have ever seen.  But, very mellow and very tired and very friendly and appreciative, and with a severe kink in his tail.

We fed him a little more, gave him some water, petted him, and started calling people looking for a home for him.

I thought I knew several people that had said they wanted a cat.  But, when it came right down to it, they all bowed out.  Word soon got around here at work, and one of the mechanics, Mike,  said he'd take him home.  He could live in his shop with his other cats.  Okay.
[I thought this was a shame, because he was such an inquisitive and social beast.  He should be purring in someone's lap, making them happy.]

Well, Mike took him home that night.  And life went on.

About a week later, I got a call from the night dispatcher at work.  Mike couldn't keep Bentley because his male cat didn't want Bentley around.  It wasn't going to work out.  Did I know anyone who wanted him?

I frantically started calling people again.  This was such a great cat, he deserved a good home, but no one wanted to take him.

I called my husband (he was out of town for the weekend).  Could we maybe take him?  He could live in the shop at our house.  What about our dog Lucy?  She hates cats.  She spends her days laying in wait for the neighborhood cats to come into the yard so she can chase them out.   He agreed it would be nice to have a cat in the shop.  We'd have to make it work.

I met with Mike on Saturday morning and he gave me possession of Bentley.  Having absolutely no 'cat supplies'  I immediately headed over to the PetsMart.  I had fun picking out bowls, a bed, a litter pan and had a lengthy discussion with one of the workers there about the kind of litter to use.  Then we discussed food.  My oh my.  What about treats or toys?  And, hey, this nice little cat-scratcher/perch would be perfect in front of the window, and it's on sale!  I practically filled up the back of my car with the $228 worth of 'stuff' we had to have.

Once home, I made a quick check of the shop to cat-proof it.  Blocked off the dog door to the outside and set Bentley free into his new home.  I showed him where the litter box was, the food and water was put out.  He immediately began to check the place out.

I didn't want to leave him alone, so I got to work on a quilt project I'd been putting off.  Bentley eventually came up and helped me as I pinned the quilt on the floor.

He found his bed by the window and seemed to settle right in.  I went in for the night and didn't mention him to Lucy.

I spent half of the day on Sunday up in my studio quilting on the recently pinned quilt.  Bentley split his time between eating, sleeping and exploring.  He seemed to be very content, but without a lot of energy.

He found the window above my cutting table where he could see out the other side of the studio from, so I cleared my junk off the sill for him.

This is my first cat.  I've always had a dog or two, I am definitely a dog-person.  I think my husband is more a cat-person.  So, hopefully, this will be his cat. 

I spent the weekend feeling good about giving Bentley a good home, and feeling guilty about leaving him in the shop alone (in the dark) and feeling guilty about spending time with him because then I was leaving Lucy shut out of the shop.  I'm a dog person (I don't trust cats).   Nothing personal, Bentley, I just don't know you well enough yet.  With a little luck, it will all work out for everyone.   Welcome home.

And Lucy still doesn't know he's here.


  1. Anonymous9:11 PM

    Dad a "cat person"? Lol :)

  2. very nice story, Terry.

  3. Enjoy him he sounds like a cool cat and deserves a lovely home. So glad he has found someone nice. He may have been left at the landfill and starved!
    We are having a new puppy (our third black Labrador) and maybe calling it Byron or Bentley. We at present have Mr Darcy (12) and Hugo (4).
    Good luck with Bentley hope he and Lucy have great lives together.

  4. Cats are the top of the evolution ladder. Great blog Terry!