The Joyful Transformation of a Rescue Cat

We’ve experienced the joyful transformation of our cat Violet.

Rescue cats can change with time. She’s gone from avoiding attention to asking to be petted!

The first pictures we have of Violet are from 2013. She was not a consistent visitor to our yard until the spring of 2014.

Violet in March 2013 at the cat house and feeding area
Violet in March 2013 at the cat house and feeding area

She was thin and fearful with a scar on her nose. We didn’t see her much. In the spring of 2014, she started coming nearly every day for food. She may have been abandoned by a previous owner.

In July of 2014 she brought 5 kittens to the yard!

Violet and her kittens

Violet and her kittens – We fed them wet food and petted them while they ate to socialize them.

We knew we had to help her and the kittens get off the streets! You can read more about her background story and why we had had food in the yard here.

The rest of the summer was spent socializing her and the kittens. They learned to trust me and would respond to my voice.

Violet has undergone an amazing transformation since becoming our house cat in October 2014.

The Joyful Transformation

At first, Violet did not want us to be petting her. As when she was still outside being socialized, she would tolerate some petting while eating. Mostly, she said no to pets!

She spent lots of time hiding. We gave her space. Once merged with our other 3 cats, we still gave her space.

I started to pet her when she would walk by me. I talked nicely to her from a distance. My husband did the same.

If we would pet her too much or in ways, she didn’t like, she would snap at us.

Violet hanging out
Violet hanging out

She learned from watching Buster that she could be petted while on the bathroom sink. Eventually, she seemed to feel safe and we could pet her every day when she jumped up on the sink.

After she was indoors for about 6 months, she purred for the first time!!! Talk about rewarding joy!

The time and patience were worth it. We didn’t give up on her discovering the joy of human attention.

Now, she will follow me around the house, and sometimes she will sit and watch me. In the kitchen, she will beg for me to drop something (even if she doesn’t like it!). I call her my little stalker sometimes.

She doesn’t like to be picked up and will not sit on the couch on my lap (yet!). She will purr easily if petted on her terms.​

Violet in the kitchen

I still have hope that she will be a lap cat someday. For now, I am happy to be followed around and allowed to pet her.

We also kept 2 of Violet’s kittens (the ginger twins) and went from 3 cats to 6 when we adopted them!​ We found indoor homes for the other 3 kittens.

2021 Update: Violet is seeing attention more than ever. Now, she likes to be held while I’m sitting on the couch, and occasionally she will ask Ted to pet her too!

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Heidi Bender is the writer and founder of the Joy of Cats. She enjoys sharing cat information and providing helpful cat tips. She considers herself a cat lady and currently cares for eight cats.

3 thoughts on “The Joyful Transformation of a Rescue Cat”

  1. What a wonderful transformation, Heidi, and thank you for your love and patience in rescuing Violet and her beautiful family!
    *Looks like you have a lot of spammers posting. FYI*


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