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PET SPOTLIGHT: JD ALLEN

Accidentally Addicted to Felines

Editor’s Note: JD Allen has six cats. Six.

I never meant to be a Cat Lady. I swear.

Collecting is sometimes an accidental thing. My mother-in-law had a set of curtains above her kitchen sink with chickens printed on them and the next thing she knew every holiday people were giving her chicken shit. Not chicken shit, but chicken shaped and decorated knickknacks. It got weird. Did you know there was a chicken Chia head?

Like her, I started slow, with a respectable number of cats. Two. I had Bonnie and Clyde. It was just the two of them for years. Clyde made it to the grand old age of 21 before I had to say goodbye. I was catless.

That’s when it happened. 

I took in one that belonged to my daughter to start. Mila. An older girl, standoffish. She loves being outside. But she wasn’t ours.

Then one day I walked into my local pet superstore on a Saturday and the sweet lady with the Meow House rescue pegged me at first sight. 

SUCKER. 

Kitten junkie. 

I was done for. 

First I came home with Egypt.  The Brit (my husband) was surprised but taken in by the cute. It was soon obvious lonely Egypt was in need of a playmate. There I went, to the rescue lady’s house. Right inside the door was a KITTEN ROOM! Yes. A. Kitten room. It took me almost an hour to pick from all the fluff balls.

Yoshi

India (aka Indy) came from that trip. I thought I was done. Under control. The two kittens were happy and fun. It soon became clear neither was bonding with the Brit. I had to find him a fur ball to snuggle, didn’t I? I went back to the Kitten Room and managed to leave again with just one more. China. 

A year passed. I’d been banned from going to the pet superstore on the weekends. Adoption events happen on the weekends, you know.  I shied away from Facebook posts of cats in need of rescue. 

But due to unfortunate timing, I ran out of litter and needed to pop in for a quick purchase.

I was sweating as I walked up to the cages of furry faces looking for love in all the pet store places. I was going to pass by and only get the litter, maybe a squeaky mouse. But she was there. The Pusher… 

In her arms was Yoshi. It was as if she sensed I was coming in that moment and pulled out the one cat in the bunch I couldn’t resist.

POLYDACTYL, black, and adorable. Yoshi. 

I did not hang my head as I brought him home.

The Brit begged me to go cold turkey. No more. The madness had to stop.

Eight months later the pusher found me again — this time in Target. 

She had another litter of polys…

If I could just follow her home to see them.

Baby Loki. How was I supposed to leave him there?

Hello. 

My name is JD. I’m addicted to felines.

JD Allen is the author of the Sin City Investigations mysteries. The latest, SKIN GAME, is out on February 8.