Characteristics of the interviewee: Elderly women in her fifties Empty nester- no kids Has 13 cats at home There are 300 cats on campus. This is the fourth time somebody brought it to me. He has got a collar with at tag on him saying my home is UTA.
Anyway we do a lot of rescuing on campus. My husband’s second job, he works at a vet clinic. The vet clinic he works for has a kitten that somebody just brought in and dumped, he has three of them home. We have plenty of them at home.
He has got three from the clinic and one from trapped three weeks ago. Anyway we have 13 at home. I never had cats before.In India we have three dogs at home, in India its still not popular to have cats at home. Right, yeah cats are not pet to you guys, and there is usually a lots of dogs in the streets and not lots of cats right. Here in this campus you wouldn’t know there are lots of cats. At nights you see a lot. A bunch of them near the engineering building since they started construction over there, now there are at the life science building.
The oldest one there on campus he has probably been there for 12 years. He is a grown old man, he has been here for a long time. There are around and you hardly see them.
I feed a group at the Lutheran centre and you see my cats usually comes out and I have to be really careful when I walk across the street, if they see me they run into the street. I have to approach, make sure I make no noise because when they see me, they come running and I don’t want them to run across uta blvd. Yeah its not safe (smile) Its not a good thing (laughing) (She was showing her pet frog in a case case) the whole thing about animals is that you have to make them comfortable.
Make them happy pet. Yeah. We have a small fish tank at home, because in uta housing we are not allowed to have pets.No pets. So we have a small fish tank with the gold fishes and the cuppies.
Its good to have pets at home. Well I had a 100 gallon tank at home with gold fish in it and when the winter came in we put the tortoises in it, when they were smaller. Now my husband gave the 100 gallon tank for some guy who uses it for snakes, this was in 1987. That was in 1987. I had pets for a long time.
Long history of pets Yeah. We never had dogs before because I had always been partial to cats. Now we can leave the cats all day long and we have little cat boxes. They are self sufficient.
Working full time you can still have quite a few cats and maintain. Saturday we usually are at the vets office from 8am till noon when they close because they need shots, flu checks and when we have 13 there is going to be something every weekend. Yeah somebody obviously needs something or the other. The only animal that we ever bought a, that I ever have put in a casket was this little girl and she was my grand champion. She was 13 when I had to put her down.
I had this cat for so long and this was the animal like 1 in a million okay. We have lots of cats. I had to put him down when he was 13 and he had a kidney failure.
hen they get that old their kidneys fail, in cats the kidneys go the first thing and it is not fair to keep them alive. They just lose their fluid. So anyway this little girl was the very first grand champion cat I have ever had. This was the only one for which the casket was built for. Usually we wrap them in a towel and put them down. For her we had a special wooden box made for her, wrapped in her favorite blanket lining.
I did the whole thing. I am the one who dug her the hole for her body. I was like okay.
She was the only one who got the casket. She was not the regular (pause)I can’t even explain. It was one of the special ones. Yeah even for one of my pets, mom didn’t want to send her just like that.
She wrapped her in her saree before sending her. She was the only one for casket. The rest of them we just wrapped in their favorite blankets. We have heating pads for pets at home, we don’t heat the house.
Yeah that good because we will not be able to accustom to that heat at home. Whoever is gonna buy our home is going wonder whether we have a pet cemetery in our backyard. We have tortoises, parrots. Do cats needs lots of physical activities like dogs?The cats make up their own games and they don’t need to have one. So they don’t need to have a strict fitness regime.
No they don’t. we have cats under the age of 1. They are nuts. They just run around, chase each other. They are crazy. We call crazy hour. Right before you feed them. Its like “hurry mom, are you coming? ” Do you get to train them? No.
I cant say any of my cats are trained. What about cats climbing? Our house is not made for people anymore. When me and my husband moved in we took all the carpet off. Carpets are something which are worse for people with asthma. How about grooming the pets.
All my cats except one are short hair. I don’t want them to have. Every day I check them for bumps and lumps.
That’s how I found cancers in some of our older cats. When they get older you really need to stay on top of that. Just a regular examination would help. Right. The UTA cats gets lots of abscess. The only one for which we got a casket was for this one.
(she showed me the picture of the cat) when was this. This was way back in 1997. I don’t think there was even option of getting a casket. So built your own? Yeah. I don’t remember there was one. PetSmart was new to the area. I don’t think they had an idea of casket.That’s a sad part and I don’t think they would link this to the happy pet store.
I don’t think people are going to accept that. “ This is a happy place” The pet casket part I did it for me and not for her. I did it for me because she was gone. But there are people who do pet cemetery, but I hear horror stories that they are not maintained and they are not buried as they are supposed to be. Of course lots of people who live in apartments, they don’t really have a choice. They either leave their veterinarian take their pet.
Lots of veterinarian do cremation and they give their ashes to you.I personally feel to donate the pets organs before burying or cremating. What do you feel about these pictures. Once your animal is down, the veterinarian wraps it and puts it in a box so that you don’t sit with your pet in hand that is dead. They want you get the image out of your head, put it away immediately.
So do you think the pet casket removes the psychological breakdown by taking your pet’s image away from you. And that helps you to bring down the emotion and depression. Do you have any idea about the pet casket varieties and price. Frankly speaking I don’t have any idea about the current options for caskets in the market.