I waited impatiently for the day I could visit the breeder and bring my kitten home. After looking over the pictures and trying out various names, I’d narrowed it down and my favorite was Bernie (could also be Burnie for his flame point coloring) based on his dominate expression of mild disgruntlement. I wanted to make sure he and the name were suited before deciding though. I bought a soft mesh-sided carrier with a lambswool bottom and included a a soft blanket for cuddling.
The drive to Gresham from our home in Longview took about 1.5 hours. As I parked, I reviewed my questions and made sure I had the rest of the $1,700 purchase price with me before grabbing the carrier and heading in. Mom elected to wait at home with her Yorkie, Bear. We hoped Bear would find it easier to adapt to a very young animal and had been telling him about the cousin who’d be coming to live with us all.
The breeder had the paperwork assembled. After a few signatures and the exchange of money, I picked up the thoroughly disinterested kitten and placed him carefully in his carrier. We were off. I installed the carrier (and complaining kitten) in the passenger seat of my Hyundai Veloster, keeping it level and snugged in.
Walking around and getting in, I cajoled, “Hey, little guy. It’s not so bad. We’ll be home soon and you’ll have lots to entertain you.”
As we drove along, I began to call him Bernie … he was seriously disgruntled and spent the miles testing the mesh with his claws and chewing on it with a determined expression. I began promising, “We’ll stop at the first rest stop and I’ll take you out for a cuddle. Please give me just a few more minutes.”
When we got to the rest station, he was happy to climb out of his carrier, but just wasn’t that interested in me. After a quick cuddle and a chance to look out the windows and test the air, we got on the road again. He eventually napped … at the end farthest from the soft blanket … until we got home.
I had assembled toys and a tent-like playpen holding his litter box, a bed, food and water dishes and some toys. Some panels allowed visibility, but gave definite boundaries. Guess what he did? Yes, he tested and chewed on the playpen too. He remained aloof and eventually napped for a few hours. As bed time rolled around, I was optimistic. I’d settle him into the playpen, turn down the lights and get some sleep.