December 7, 2016

Shy CeCe Goes from Longtime Adoption Center Resident to Beloved Pet

Happy Tail: Cece

“She was so very shy at first, but I think she knows this is her forever home and wouldn’t want to be anywhere else.”- Betty K. of New York, NY

Sometimes, finding the perfect pet parent for a sweet dog or cat may take a little longer than expected. It can be harder for shy cats especially to find a fitting, patient adopter right away. Sadly, we often see these timid, sensitive cats passed by in shelters. For the ASPCA Adoption Center’s current longest resident CeCe, this was the case.

We first met the young cat in 2013 when she was brought into the Adoption Center after being found as a stray. At the time, CeCe was extremely underweight, in poor health and was fearful of just about everything. Knowing that the frightened cat would need time to warm up to any potential adopters, it was decided that CeCe would become a part of our Office Foster Program, which allows some of our feline friends the opportunity to live in ASPCA team members' offices. Living in an office allows cats like CeCe to have a more sociable and domestic living space, giving them an opportunity to come out of their shells. 

Cece on a filing cabinent

During her time as an office foster kitty, CeCe met Marylyn, an ASPCA team member who became CeCe’s foster for nearly 16 months out of her three-year stay with us. Marylyn worked hard to make the uncertain cat feel safe and comfortable, and slowly but surely, CeCe started feel at ease. “As we saw her personality come out, it was exciting to think of how she might react to loving home and the opportunity to do things we weren't sure she'd done before,” says Marylyn. Everyone began to grow confident that CeCe would soon be able to find the perfect home.

Marylyn and everyone at the ASPCA that worked with CeCe as she waited for an adopter knew that it would take time to find the right one. They knew that CeCe needed a truly special, patient adopter that could see just how special she was despite her shy nature. Then, in January 2016, we met Betty.

After suffering the loss of her longtime feline companion, Betty didn’t believe she would ever adopt again. But by the beginning of the New Year, Betty began to think about the animals that are in need. She began to feel as though her grief over losing her beloved pet was keeping her from giving a homeless pet an opportunity for a loving home, so she decided to check the ASPCA website, and that’s where she first saw CeCe’s photo. It was love at first sight. “The photo of her on the website was so beautiful.  Her eyes looked directly into the camera, and they held such a beautiful expression,” Betty says.  “I gave the other photos a chance, but I came right back to CeCe and decided she was the one for me. “ 

Cece on a desk near a duck stuffed animal

At CeCe and Betty’s first meeting, Marylyn noted that they weren’t able to interact much due to CeCe’s apprehension when it comes to new people. But that didn’t deter Betty, who knew that CeCe was the cat she had been waiting for, and Marylyn, who knew that Betty was the adopter CeCe had been waiting for. They were a match three years in the making. It was the end of CeCe’s journey with the ASPCA, and she’d finally found the one thing everyone wanted for her: a loving home. 

Betty, CeCe and Marylyn on adoption day
Betty, CeCe and Marylyn on adoption day

The transition from longtime ASPCA resident to new pet was a little difficult at first. CeCe took her time to adjust and avoided interaction with Betty for a little while. However, Betty remained patient, and the timid cat eventually began to come around to her new environment. “I think she quickly discovered how comfortable a home can be,” Betty tells us.

Now, CeCe fully enjoys the comforts of her new home. She spends her days lounging on the couch beside Betty and thoroughly enjoys twirling around on the plush carpet. She even enjoys affection such as petting and brushing, and will let Betty pick her up for short amounts of time.

The amount of progress CeCe made over her three years at the ASPCA is truly remarkable. Everyone involved in her journey knew that with patience, love and the comforts of what she’d never known, she could become a beloved pet.

“It is incredibly exciting to hear about CeCe experiencing all of things we hoped she would get to do,” Marylyn says, reflecting on her time with CeCe.  “I smile every time I think of CeCe—the progress she's made, her mom's willingness to love a shy cat who had been overlooked before, and our organization giving CeCe the love and time she needed for her loving mom to find her.  I'm not sure words can capture how much being a part of CeCe's journey means to me and the impact she had on my life.”