Sweet kitty Hoonie has always loved being around other people. He loves to get cuddled and stroked and is never been happier than when he’s relaxing beside someone for hours at a time. When his owner passed away, this came hard on him. At 16 years old Hoonie was left not only without a home but also without companionship. Thankfully he had one friend to keep him comfort: his favorite stuffed animal, a grey, and white cat. After his owner’s death, Hoonie refuses to be separated from his toy, and can often be found giving it a cuddle or just sitting by its side. Where Hoonie goes, the toy goes too.
Hoonie was taken in by his owner’s daughter first but moved to a shelter in Maryland run Alley Cat Rescue, because her family was allergic to cats. Naturally, the toy went with him. He’s settled into the shelter well with his cute toy by his side, spending his time cuddling it, wrestling it, and spooning it to sleep. But he’s now in search of a loving home for him and his toy to spend his final years.
‘We’ve never seen a cat that is so attached to a stuffed animal,’ Brianna Grant, who works at the shelter, told The Dodo. ‘It really seems to be his support system. ‘It’s been a long-time companion. [The owner’s daughter] sent us photos of Hoonie roughhousing with the stuffed animal, so I think Hoonie has a lot of fun with the stuffed animal and seems so attached to it. ‘He’s been in the cage just cuddling next to it, and it seems to really help him out.’ Staff at the shelter are really keen to find Hoonie a home because they can see how much he loves spending time with humans.
‘When he’s lonely, he will let you know,’ says Brianna. ‘You’ll hear him from the other. ‘But once you go and hang out with him, he just gets quiet and hangs out next to you, and he seems so happy just to have people by his side. ‘He is a senior cat in the last stages of his life, so I think some people have a hard time dealing with the idea of adopting a cat and making a connection, just for the feline to pass away.