Lauri wasn’t expecting to expand her furry family when she first met Han as a newborn kitten in 2019. She had just recently rescued Festus, a 10-month-old Shephard Coonhound Mix with more than enough personality to fill any room. It was the perfect fit for Lauri and her family who were grieving the loss of their 16-year-old Rotti/Bullmastiff, Maximus. “Festus is a giant goof,” said Lauri. “He loves walks and because he is a hound, his nose is always to the ground, sniffing all the wonderful scents of his world.” Festus quickly became a beloved part of the family and even found a new four-legged friend to play with named Roo.
Lauri met Roo, a close friend’s energetic Argentina Dogo, back in 2018. His personality was a stark contrast to Festus’s, but that didn’t stop them from bonding.“They are opposites,” explained Lauri. “Roo is white. Festus is black. One is alert and aware; one has his nose to the ground. One is serious and one is a goof. One is old, the other is younger. Yet when they lay down, they are meshed with each other and look like yin yang.” Festus is usually the more curious of the two, but it was actually Roo’s discovery in Lauri’s backyard that would eventually expand Lauri’s furry family threefold.
One day, Roo was digging around near the garbage cans and meticulously moving loose, wooden slats away from the bins. Lauri and Roo’s dad figured Roo was on the hunt for a raccoon. “When we opened the doors on the bin, we saw nothing but Roo was actively hunting for something,” recalled Lauri. “We lifted the pallet and there was a mommy cat protecting her two kittens.” Sadly, Roo jumped at the opportunity and grabbed one of the kittens. Lauri scrambled to protect them. The mother cat darted away quickly as Lauri scooped up the now lone kitten remaining.
“I wrapped Han in a towel and brought him to my daughter who fed him with a dropper,” explained Lauri. “The mommy cat kept coming around looking for her babies and we tried to rescue her as well, but she was too fast and clever. We couldn’t catch her.” Lauri adopted the kitten and named him Han after Han Solo in order to commemorate the day he was rescued in the backyard – May 4th. Han was only a few days old then, but now he’s a 2-year-old Tuxedo cat who rarely shies away from playful rough housing.
“Han is very curious and playful,” said Lauri. “If he gets over stimulated, he can play rough. He is very vocal and talks a lot. He loves to be around people…he has a larger-than-life personality that loves to be involved in whatever is going on. It is like having a large 3-month-old kitten.”
“You could be having the worst day ever, full of stress, time constraints, frustration,” said Lauri. “It all goes away when they come up for a simple pat, kiss, or caress.”