Tuesday, March 13, 2018

The Rescued Interviews: Ashton

Meows from Mudpie!

Back in 2015 Angel Truffles started interviewing the cats featured in Rescued: The Stories of 12 Cats, Through Their Eyes, an anthology of rescue cat stories compiled by Janiss Garza, who writes the Sparkle Cat blog. She was unable to see it to completion but I was more than honored to continue the series once I settled into my forever home and took full reins of our blog. Now Rescued Volume 2 is on store shelves and it was my goal to interview as many of the kitties as possible once again! (If you missed our review, it can be found here.) I came very close, and it's hard to believe we've reached the final interview with the cats of Rescued!

Each author featured in the book has nominated a cat rescue and was assigned a month to promote the book, with a third of the profits from that month going to their rescue. March's spotlight is Ashton, one of the 4 cats that star in the blog Cats Herd You. Not only is Ashton Rescued Volume 2's beautiful cover girl, she's also currently offering a special prize package on her blog featuring a mug and tote with her signature saying, "Humans are scary." The question is...following her rescue, does Ashton still think humans are scary?

Welcome Ashton! Thank you so much for taking time to chat with me today. Could you start by introducing yourself to us and telling us what made your story such a good fit for the Rescued anthology?

Thanks for having me, Mudpie! I'm a one-eyed rescue cat living the good life with my human and our family in Florida. I guess I had a dramatic rescue. This volume of Rescued stories is about how cats can help humans heal. I love my human enough that when she was really sad, I worked through some of my biggest fears for her. My human and I are good for each other.

As the title of your story in Rescued states, your real-life rescue was "A Scary Situation". What do you remember about that day and how did you learn to trust the human that saved you?

The day my human rescued me was all a blur. By the time she found me, I was already in a lot of pain, and I couldn't walk. Otherwise I would have run away from her, because I was really scared of her. Humans are scary. My mother taught me that, and it's true!

I really remember my human's hands grabbing me and her looking almost as scared as I felt when she picked me up. Humans aren't as tough as they look, you know.

I might never have learned to trust my human, but she figured out my favorite thing in the world is food. I wasn't a baby and didn't need bottle feeding or anything, but my human made sure I didn't get meals unless I ate them directly from her. After a while, I didn't just associate her with grabbing hands and giving me medicine. I associated her with food, too. That helped me learn to trust her.

What's the story behind your name?

My human had a really hard time thinking of a name for me. She wasn't planning on adopting a cat when we met, so she hadn't spent any time thinking about it ahead of time. But there I was, and I needed a name! She couldn't just call me "the kitten" for very long.

Three days before I adopted was a famous court verdict very close to where I was found, and it was still all the humans were talking about. Aunt O, my human's sister, suggested that she name me Ashton after the then-famous lawyer Jeff Ashton. That's right, I was named after a boy! But my human tells me she has always liked that name since she saw a southern belle character with that name on the North and South miniseries on TV. So even though I'm named after a boy, it's not just a boy's name.

How have you adjusted to life minus one eye? Has it slowed you down in any way?

I have had only one eye since I was pretty small, so I have had lots of time to practice without it. I'm not the bravest cat you have ever met, so there are things I don't try because they're a little harder for me. I don't get up on the kitchen counter, even when there are things that smell really good up there, because it's hard to tell how high to jump.

I also don't usually play with the wand toy when the feathers are flying through the air. I can't tell how far away they are, so I miss them when I swat them. Or worse, they smack me in the face because I didn't realize they were getting too close. It's okay, because my human drags the feathers along the floor, and I can use the texture of the tile or wood to tell me how far away they are. Then I can pounce right on them!

What is life like for you today, especially now that a new addition to your family means you're no longer the baby?

Since I am a timid cat, I like my routines, and I am very set in them. I have a cushion on the back of the sofa where I nap during the day that is smashed down just right to make a perfect Ashton-sized nest. At night, I sleep between my human and the edge of the bed. Breakfast and dinner need to be on time, or else!

No longer being the baby can be hard because I don't get quite as much of my human's attention. Don't get me wrong, I can get her to pet me any time. All I have to do is wave my paw and she melts. But I don't usually try to get her attention when the black and white brat is with her, because that kitten tries to play with me, and I don't want to play back. I like to play on my own, when I feel safe.

What shelter have you chosen to receive your proceeds from the book this month and why?

I chose Candy's Cats in Orlando, Florida to receive my proceeds this month. They do so much great work for cats here in my community and adopt hundreds and hundreds of cats a year into loving homes. This past year, they had several special blind and half-blind cats go through their adoption program, and I really want to support an organization who takes such care in finding them perfect homes. Right now, Candy's Cats is putting the finishing touches on an adoption center that will be the first all-cat adoption center in the greater Orlando area. I'm excited that this will help more cats find forever homes.

What do you hope people learn from your story and what would you like your lasting legacy to be?

I hope people learn that cats who appear to be broken or don't look perfect still have lots and lots of love to give. They can be wonderful members of your family and will purr and cuddle with you just like any other cat. And cats like me who are missing an eye don't require any extra medical care, either. We're perfect just as we are!

Photos Used With Permission: Julie McAlee


Momma Kat and Her Bear Cat said...

We LOVE Ashton! She's a very special girl :)

Summer at sparklecat.com said...

My human says thank you SO much for all these interviews, Mudpie! We both love Ashton lots and she has a great message in her story about learning to trust, and how cats are perfect, no matter how they look on the outside.

Rosa Silva said...

This is such a beautiful story! I'm so happy Ashton found a forever home and learned to trust humans again

Unknown said...

Ashton has a great story! I'm glad that she learned to trust her human.

The Island Cats said...

We love Ashton! We knew some of her story, but not all of it. Thanks for interviewing her.

Three Chatty Cats said...

Ashton is a beautiful cat, loved learning more about her.

The Menagerie Mom said...

Ashton is one of our heroes! We didn't know all of these details about her story, so it's wonderful to learn more about her. Thank you, Ashton and Mudpie, for this pawsome interview!

Patricia T said...

Ashton is beautiful and I’m glad she found a loving, forever home.

Cats Herd You said...

Thanks so much for sharing our interview, Mudpie! It was a lot of fun to interview with you, and it means a lot to be able to share my story with so many cat lovers. — Ashton

PL Keenor said...

What an uplifting story. I'm so glad you found such a good home after having a tough time.
That's Purrfect

pilch92 said...

Wonderful interview. I follow Ashton and her chicken emporium :)

Forty Paws said...

That is a wonderful story!
Thank you so much for your kind thoughts regarding Smokey crossing the Bridge. He is missed so much here at Forty Paws.

Random Felines said...

We love Ashton and her family.

Cathy Keisha said...

Ashton IS perfect and it's nice to see her here since she doesn't get much space on her blog anymore.

Unknown said...

Ashton is amazing and what a beautiful story. xo Kim & Wu Kitty

Eastside Cats said...

Oh Ashton, I think you are beautiful!