RAPS is short for Regional Animal Protection Society, a registered charity and operator of a sanctuary which houses and cares for nearly 500 homeless or abandoned cats in Richmond, BC, Canada. The Neko Files is a celebration of the sanctuary and all those who live and work there.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Tugboat Wants to go Home with You

Tugboat came to the cat sanctuary just over a year ago.

He'd been surrendered for peeing where he shouldn't, but proved himself to be such a friendly, cuddly character that we soon found ourselves glad to have him. We began to wonder if the peeing may have been in response to something specific in his environment rather than a general behavior problem, as can sometimes be the case.

Recently, Tugboat has been letting us know on an increasingly regular basis that the environment of the cat sanctuary, where he must share his living space with hundreds of other cats, is not something he feels is going to work for him in the long term. His frustration is coming out in ever more frequent attacks on other cats in the doublewide, most recently on gentle, timid little Elmo. His "time outs" in a cage have become so frequent that staff are just having him stay in the cage he's staked out as his personal territory.

And yet to humans, he is the same loving "Tuggy" he always was. When not on a "time out" he'll still run up to you and stand up as tall as he can on his hind legs as he paws at you (a rather ineffectual attempt at leg climbing on account of his previous owners having had him declawed) to get you to pick up and give him hugs. Even when visited in his cage, he's all hugs, kisses and cuddles every time. I've never seen him not in the mood for a visit and a cuddle.

Clearly, he'd be so much happier in a home where he could enjoy spending time with his humans and not have to deal with all these other cats. And the peeing? Apparently, his former owner was often away, and cats who are stressed and unhappy about being left alone can sometimes respond to the situation in ways people would rather they didn't. If the situation changes, though, the behavior can stop.

Leslie is confident that if brought into a loving, single-cat home where he can have people around him, Tugboat would once again be the all around wonderful boy we know he can be.


  1. The peeing thing can change when the cats environment changes. Tristan, the wonderful siamese boy from the front courtyard has not peed outside his litter box even once in his happy new adoptive home!!


  2. Tugboat is an awesome cat. Wasn't he picked on before and had the abcess on the side of his body?

    -Vanessa W