Instead of just worrying about what to do with Sally girl while I'm in Thailand I'm going to ask for a little help from you & the universe & the powers of the Internet. Sally needs a new permanent home, and I hope you will help me find one for her.
For the record, Sally is a high maintenance cat, and I don't want anyone to take her in if they can't deal with that, although I don't really expect anyone to be quite as much of a slave to her as I have been. So I'll give the pros & cons and if you or anyone you know in the greater Portland / SW Washington area sounds like a good match for her, please let me know.
I'll give the cons first:
Sally has some health issues. Most obvious is that she is a chubba chubba hunk o'chubby cat.
Which means she has, at times, difficulty cleaning herself. She's not a smelly cat or anything, but she gets dandruff, and I do try to give her a bath a couple times a year. She likes to be brushed, especially around her face... she really gets into it.
Sally has an ongoing skin condition - she gets lesions that lead to scabs. I've taken her to the vet for this and a cortisone shot usually gets rid of them for a few months, but they always come back, and cortisone is not a great long-term treatment option. I've also gotten a steroid spray to use on her spots (twice a day for five days) - but as you might imagine, she's not fond of being sprayed with a liquid that is cold from being kept in the fridge.
Finally, when diagnosing her skin condition, we discovered that she is allergic to a whole host of things, most notably: beef, chicken, pork, and corn (also sisal - the stuff they make scratching posts from - who knew?). All grocery-store cat food is off the menu. I've found a few acceptable alternatives at Western Pet Supply (Duck & Green Pea, Herring & Sweet Potato work well, she really loves Rad Cat raw food - Turkey or Lamb).
Personality wise, she's the queen of her castle.
She fights with other cats & dogs and would really do best being the only cat in the home. She's very affectionate, but only on her own terms. If you pick her up, or get 'in her face' when she's not in the mood, she *will* scratch you. She wants her breakfast at the crack of dawn. She will be a furry and insistent alarm clock.
Oh, and she HATES the vet. She hates the vet with a blinding fury and channels the strength of ten cats when they attempt to take her temperature. It's an awesome sight...to see chubby ol' Sally scratching the tar out of two or three full grown humans. When you take her to the vet, make sure they know she's a fighter & that they'll need the Kevlar gloves. Honestly - I'm not even sure that's a con... she's just really good at defending herself.
And if you've read that far, here are the pros:
Sally can be the sweetest most affectionate kitty ever. She loves to be around people, her favorite place to be is on your lap (or book, or computer). Wherever I go, she wants to be in the same room as I am. When I go outside to take out the trash, do laundry or get the mail, she follows me. I've never had a cat who did anything like this. She is very much a people-cat, and a complete attention whore. She will walk up to strangers on the sidewalk and flirt for some pets. She even tolerates kids, as long as they don't pick her up.
Sally is 90% indoors / 10% outdoors. When she is outside she generally stays close to home, watching the birds & squirrels and basking in the sunshine. She hunts a little, I've gotten mice, birds, and even a couple of (still living) baby bunnies on my doorstep. She's only caught one bird in the past few years though... her physique these days is built for comfort not for speed. I think she could be happy 100% indoors, as long as there was a sunny spot near a window where she could watch everything going on outside, but a balcony or deck would be even better. She's not going to roam or get into trouble, and is smart enough to stay off the street... but she, like any of us, likes to take some fresh air from time to time.
Sally supports arts & crafts! At this moment she's sleeping on a quilt in progress. She also likes to sit with me when I knit. She is an excellent knitting cat as she generally avoids getting into my yarn. I can knit right next to her and she doesn't swat the yarn... she only ever gets interested in yarn if I'm using it as an actual toy - or using my ball winder (what red-blooded cat resist that??).
Best of all - Sally does not scratch the furniture!
She's very good about using her turbo scratcher. So good, in fact, that the cardboard center will need to be replaced regularly.
Finally - just some general information:
Sally's somewhere between 11 -12 years old. I got her from the Thurston County Humane society in 1998? and she was about a year or two old then. So she's getting up there, but has quite a few good years left. And really, all she wants in the world is a cozy warm place to sleep (your lap will do nicely) and someone to keep the food dish full. If you, or anyone you know in the area would love to have a big-ol pile of fur to cuddle up with... Sally's your girl.