The other day we received an email saying “I’m Cowen, a queer dude with a cat, and this is the long story of Hutch”. And long it is, but it’s also really good. So read on:

Hutch is a sassy senior who’s approximately 17 years old. I’m a vet tech, and unlike most of my colleagues who acquire their pets through work (when people abandon or surrender their pets, or if somebody brings in a stray), I actually had to go to the SF SPCA and purchase this cat, who was 10 1/2 at the time. I visited with him and several other cats, and had actually decided on a much younger cat originally. I was about to go fill out the paperwork for the other cat when I saw this couple checking out Hutch (who was “Smokey” at the time – real original). The lady liked him, but the guy dismissed him, saying “That cat’s 10 1/2 years old! He’s TEN AND A HALF!” I thought about how many people must have passed him up for the same reason. He had been at the shelter for about 8 months at the time.

What really sold me on him was when I walked by his little room, and this 10 1/2 year old cat, who was “too old” for most people to adopt, was in there going crazy with his toy, batting it around and throwing it up in the air and chasing it all over the 3×3 room. Totally entertaining himself. I was impressed by his energy and his sweet and silly personality, and I just knew he was the one. And I was like, how dare these people reject him because of his age. He’s such a cool cat! Little did I know what a handful he would be.

This is the most food-obsessed cat I have ever known. In his younger days, he would go to any lengths to get any type of food possible. He has been known to steal food off a plate in somebody’s hands, bite it right off the fork on the way to somebody’s mouth, and on at least one occasion, he grabbed a slice of pizza that was actually IN someone’s mouth, and tried to pull it out! My guests are usually so amused by his antics that they’ll try to feed him everything just to see what he’ll eat. And he’ll literally eat anything – the only thing I’ve found that he doesn’t like is bananas. He has even eaten dry pasta and frozen vegetables that I’ve dropped on the floor.

Now he’s too arthritic to get up on the kitchen counters, but back in the day, I’d come home to find that he had broken into the cabinets and helped himself to a package of English muffins, or some cereal or Goldfish crackers. It’s kind of a relief that I don’t have to lock everything away so carefully anymore.

So yeah, Hutch’s favorite hobbies are eating, pestering me for food, harassing my guests for their food, stealing food, eating and then vomiting, and then eating some more. He’s on a strict schedule of pestering starting at 3 a.m. and 3 p.m. (several hours before his actual meal times).

Oh yeah, and I almost forgot that (again, in his younger days) he used to catch pigeons that were perched on the windowsill, when the window was open no more than about 2 inches. He would sit there and stalk them intently, and then strike out with the swift violence of a ninja. Most of the time he would just scare them away, but several times he actually managed to grab hold of the pigeon between his two paws and/or his mouth, and try to pull it into the window. The pigeon would be screaming, feathers would be flying everywhere, and I was freaking out, trying to pull him away from it. Thankfully he never actually got the whole pigeon into the apartment. I don’t even wanna think about what a disaster that would be.

Sorry this is so long, but as you can see, Hutch is quite the character, and I have many entertaining stories about him. He’s mellowed out over the years, but he’s still pretty spry and crazy for his age.

Cowen and Hutch of the NakedHood

If you, too, want your own kitteh to love and steal your food from your mouth, take a look at all these little adoptable fellas at the SPCA website.