February 05, 2024

The One Where Phoebe Moved Out

It's been a while since I've updated anything about Phoebe. Can you believe it's been about two years since she was very sick and diagnosed with kidney disease? She'd gotten down under five pounds, and while she'd always been skinny, she looked like death. I said my goodbyes to her, convinced that she wouldn't be coming home from the vet with me.

Phoebe is now 16 years old and she is probably on her ninth of nine lives. Even when we adopted her, she'd already been shot by a bb gun and some sort of trauma had resulted in the loss of half of her tail. There was the time she was locked in my neighbor's shed for four days straight without food or water. And a time where she somehow got a puncture wound on her back, which got infected--resulting in surgery. She's been through a lot!

When Noah decided to move into an apartment, he said he wished he could take Phoebe and Estelle with him. Phoebe has always been "his" cat; he has a strong bond with her.

Noah and Phoebe in 2009, on the day we brought Phoebe home

I was about to dismiss the idea, but then I started to think about it. Phoebe has made it clear that she would prefer to be an only pet. She gets along with Joey, but she hates the other cats. Chick and Duck torment her (they are only trying to play with her, but she doesn't want anything to do with them).

The only cat she's ever gotten along with is Chandler. But then again, *everybody* loved Chandler.

With Phoebe being old, slow, and a third the size of the kittens, I was constantly having to separate the cats to accommodate Phoebe. I feel super protective of her, even though she's a spitfire and has proven she can take care of herself.

It was always extremely difficult to get her to eat. For the last couple of years, I've been doing everything I can to get her to gain some weight--trying numerous different types of food--but she's not food-motivated in the slightest. Feeding the cats was super stressful. Along with their dry food, I started giving them wet food once a day (they go crazy for it) to hopefully entice Phoebe. Each time, I had to watch the cats like a hawk so they didn't go steal Phoebe's food. (If I didn't keep them away, they'd go sit right in front of her to intimidate her to leave her plate.)

As I thought about what Noah said, I realized that Phoebe would probably be thrilled to live as a solo pet with Noah. She has a strong bond with him. And he could feed her wet food as frequently as she'd eat, allowing her to take her time (considering there weren't more cats around stalking her). Noah said there was a pet fee of $350 at the apartment, which he couldn't afford. I told him that we could do a short trial period and if she seemed to do well, then Jerry and I would pay the fee as well as for her care (food, litter, vet). 

Jerry and I brought Phoebe to Noah's and I was sure that she'd be freaked out and want to come back home with us. But she seemed so comfortable there almost immediately! When she realized there weren't any other pets around, she relaxed and didn't try to hide like I expected. Noah kept sending me updates (he knew I'd ask him 100 times a day if he didn't, ha) and she is thriving!

In addition to her dry food, she's been eating wet food three times a day. She also loves the warmer temperature in Noah's apartment (our thermostat is at 68 F; I don't know what Noah's is, but it's definitely warmer). We brought her favorite beds over there and she likes to lie in front of the heater. She's had no problem using the litter box (she never has, but I wasn't sure how she'd adjust). She seems truly happy!

I miss having her around, but because she's with Noah, I know that she's getting so much attention and love--and I can go see her anytime I want. Noah and his girlfriend (who also adores Phoebe) work opposite schedules, so she's rarely home alone. My house is a million times more peaceful without the fighting (Estelle doesn't like Chick and Duck, but they leave her alone). Feeding the pets is stress-free.

I never thought this would be a solution (but then again, I never expected Noah to move out so suddenly). It's been working out perfectly and I'm thrilled that Phoebe is doing so well. I want to bring my scale over there in a couple of weeks and see if she's gained any weight! ;)


  1. This makes my heart so, so happy! I'm happy for them both! For all three! What a great solution.

  2. She looks very happy. I have 4 cats and 2 dogs so I get the stress of feedings..
    You did the right thing!

  3. So happy to hear this. Some times things work out for the best and this certainly is a great example. Hugs!

  4. WOW! I'm thrilled at this. Good for you for being open to it. She's such a cutie pie.

  5. I think it's great you allowed Noah to take Phoebe! You made the best decision for both person and cat.

  6. I was scared she'd passed when I read the title. What a wonderful surprise to find out she really did just "move out". So happy for her and Noah.


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