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Zaffre Comes Out of Her Shell

Wednesday, November 6, 2013 - 11:00am
Grey cat with green eyes sits on floor

When Caitlin G. visited the ASPCA Adoption Center, she decided to take a chance on a special cat named Zaffre. This feline was sweet, but wasn’t quite ready for human affection. Caitlin shared the following story with us about Zaffre’s transformation:

When I visited the Adoption Center and looked at the cats, Zaffre immediately caught my eye. She was beautiful, sweet and shy. She liked to play as long as she could jump back in her cage. The staff said she had been there for almost a year, and people were hesitant to adopt her because she would not let anyone pet her. To me this seemed normal: I’ve had cats with similar personalities over the years, and I liked Zaffre's independent personality.

The staff seemed to really like her and was invested in finding her a good home. They spent time with me answering a lot of questions and telling me about Zaffre’s specific needs. I knew the ASPCA would be available to help me in the transition process should any complications or challenges arise. One week after the adoption, I received a call from a member of the Adoptions team and we had a nice, long conversation. It meant a lot that she was willing to check in.

Zaffre is very happy here! It took her awhile to adjust, but within a week or two, she stopped hiding. She began to feel comfortable being in the room with me, and we played every day with her favorite mouse toy. She didn't want me to pet her for the first month, but now she loves it! She will come up to me in the mornings and throughout the day looking for pets, and sits next to me on the couch for petting. She loves sitting in the windows, listening to the birds and watching squirrels run around outside.

Grey cat naps under leopard print chair

ASPCA staffer holding kittenWant to read more stories like Zaffre's?

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Caitlin, because of your love and patience, your gorgeous and sweet Zaffre has come out of her shell -- for good. It is beautiful that you adopted a shy, scared pussycat and gave her a chance to shine. Happiness always to you both.


My Kitty looked just like Zaffree. He had the same personality. Basically I love u but let's leave it like that. He lived 21 years just being next to me you know he loves u. Good luck


If I didn't know any better, I'd swear you have my Misha; they are identical, right down to the faint rings on the tail and eye colour. He was the same - did not want to be patted or picked up. He was over a year old and about to be shipped to a larger centre where he'd have more exposure than our tiny one and be seen by more potential adopters. I took him home and he spent the first few months hiding. He still hides when someone comes in the house, but now he's so affectionate he's almost a nuisance! He never stops purring and stamps his feet on the floor while talking to me. He is beautiful, and so are you for taking this shy girl home. Kittens are great, but the older cats are too.


Thank you Caitlin, for being the kind of person that knows that all animals have different personalities, and they all need love, even if it just means being together on their terms. I wish more people were willing to give shy, scared animals a chance. We have no idea what they may have been through in their pasts, and they have every right to be afraid. As in Zaffre's case, like many others, all it takes is time, patience, and love. The reward is worth the effort and will last their lifetime!


I adopted a Russian Blue just like Zaffre who was very timid at first. I think she was afraid of being abandoned again. In a few weeks she, the yellow tabby I adopted with her, and I were inseparable. I had her for 12 years, and she was one of the great loves of my life.

JC & Chris

Beautiful story.... beautiful cat.


This story made me want to cry. Because of your patience and love, this sweet little kitty gets to have a happy, fulfilling life in a real forever home instead of alone inside of a cage. That just makes me feel so much joy for her. Kudos to you for being able to give that to her (but I'm sure what she gives back to you is just as special). I bet it feels wonderful for her to now seek you out for pets. So cute!