Thomas was given up to a shelter when his owner fell ill and was unable to care for him.
The employees at Baltimore County Animal Services started hunting for a rеscuе to take him in as soon as he arrived. Thomas was 26 years old, so they concluded that he was a bit too much for them to manage.
Senior cats around 10 to 13 years old already have a hard time getting adơрted, but, at 26, the shelter knew that Thomas’ chances of getting adơрted were very, very slim. Not many people are willing to take on a cat that old, knowing all the medical challenges they often face. The shelter knew it would be a hard sell to try and find a rеscuе to take him as well, but they began posting about him anyway — and before long, the right woman noticed him, and knew she could help.
Laura Cassiday, webmail administrator and avid foster mom with Animal Allies Rescue Foundation (AARF), saw a post about Thomas and was immediately intrigued, especially since he was around the same age as her. She knew the super senior would have a hard time finding anyone willing to take him, and knew right away what she had to do.
“I was scrolling through my news feed and read ‘26’ and stopped in my tracks,” Cassiday told The Dodo. “I had never even heard of a cat that old. It was a snap decision; I commented that they could stop looking and I’d take him, and we called the shelter to say AARF would pull him. I picked him up the next morning.”
Cassiday, however, decided to bring Thomas home with her as opposed to placing him up for adơрtion through AARF. She agreed to be his “fospice” mother, which means she will care for him for the remainder of his life since she didn’t want him to have to wait for a home when he already might not have much time left.
For the sole aim of saving his life, “we basically took him on knowing that he’d never get adơрted,” Cassiday said.
After being checked over by a vet, it was determined that Thomas has hyperthyroidism and severe dental diseаsе, and he was put on medication for both. Other than that, though, Thomas is actually in very good health for a cat of his age, much to the shock and delight of his new family.
Thomas has been in his new home for around a week now, and he’s still getting used to everything. It’s possible he’d been in his previous home his entire life, and at 26 years old, leaving the only home you’ve ever known is a lot to deal with. Cassiday is so happy to have him, though, and has already fallen in love with his sweet, old man personality. She has four cats of her own and two other foster cats, all much younger than Thomas, obviously, and he definitely brings a calm energy to the already bustling household.
Cassiday said, “Young cats are a lot of effort. They get into things. Because Juniper unrolls the entire roll at least once every week, I waste a lot of money on toilet paper. Thomas does not annoy anyone while lying in bed all day. He’s the perfect pet. I’m not saying everyone needs to go out and get a 26-year-old cat, but maybe give that 12- or 13-year-old a second look when you’re seeking to adơрt. A kitten needs you less than they do.
Cassiday has gotten a lot of attention for adơрting Thomas, and she and her family have been touched by the outpouring of support they’ve gotten for taking in the sweet senior cat. They’ve received countless comments, messages and dơnatiоns from people all wanting to support Thomas during his golden years, and they’re completely overwhelmed by all of the kindness — though Thomas himself is completely unfazed by it all.
Cassiday has no clue how long she will be able to spend with Thomas, but whether it’s only a month or a few years, she is really grateful for the time they will have together and is just relieved that she and AARF were able to savе his life.
“I feel likе an ordinary person caught in an extraordinary moment,” Cassiday said. “In my mind, I did what anyone else should have done. I saw an animal who needed help and knew I had the capacity to help, so I did.”