When I found Henry, he was a stray that Id been feeding for several weeks outside of the Ambulance Bay of the ER at Spring Branch Hospital in Houston TX. There was a storage rental building across the driveway behind a chain link fence that he would squeeze under and hide under the building. I could tell he was matted and dirty, very shy, and I could not get closer than 20 feet from him without him running away.
I put food and water out for him every shift I worked and the nurses would feed him when I wasnt there. He would appear when I called him but would not let me get close. I tried to earn his trust over the weeks to no avail and concluded he was forever feral. But there was something about the way this ol Tomcat looked at me.
I was at work one evening (night shift 7p-7a) when my boss June walked in holding a coon trap. She said she's going to catch that orange Tomcat out back. I remember exactly what I said to her. "Lets do it. Im in." We opened a can of tunafish (Henry's Favorite) and set the trap and placed it at his feeding place by the fence. I swear it didnt even take 5 minutes. He was in it, door closed, and not very pleased with us.
June approached the trap and he emmited this gutteral growl that evolved into the most menacing ears back every tooth showing hiss that Ive ever seen from a cat. She wasnt the least bit intimidated. I was but she didnt care. She picked up the trap with the beast hissing, spitting, swatting, and screaming. She carries him into the ER and put him in the staff breakroom bathroom. I swear yall this chick crazy. So now we have an extremely upset feral cat in the bathroom for the duration of the shift. Yeah right hope no ones gotta pee. Use the public john in the hallway.
So she takes him home the next morning and over the course of a week has him to where she can go into the bedroom where shes keeping him and feed him without him going ballistic. Hes even using the litter box. over the course of another week she has him cleaned up, brushed, and letting her pet him. when she makes the discovery that hes declawed. Yeah, exactly. Somebody dumped this cat. Hes not feral. just dumped. a month goes by and hes tame again, has vet appiontments, all cleaned up and healthy.
She invites me over to see him and I find him totally docile but still a little fearful. No aggression at all. Then she said that since I was the one whos was most interested in his well being that I can take him home if I want. Ok, hmmmm. So now I have Henry and the rest was history. That was summer 1999. I have no idea how old he was but he lived till he died of renal failure on June 1st of this year. Henry was my best buddy for 14 years.
Thanks for all yer love Henry! Love ya back.