Two Paws, Infinite Gusto
It’s nearly impossible to spend more than a moment feeling like I’ve had a bad day when my closest companion is a spunky, spirited cat who has lived his whole life with two paws. Roger was born without back paws or a full tail, but in his mind, he is nothing less than regal.
Six years ago, I was browsing through a thrift shop in Rehoboth Beach. While I was aware the store donates proceeds to local animal shelters, I never expected to come across an onsite “cat room”. This is where I first met an orange tabby, named Roger. After petting him for 15 minutes, I realized he had stubs rather than back paws. From observing his behavior, it became clear that he was energetic, loving, and highly capable. I brought him home the next day.
Several of my friends immediately fell in love with Roger - and due to their accents - pronounced his name “Raja”. In Hindi, “raja” translates to “king”. I officially changed his name accordingly.
Over the years, his relentless determination, vigor, and courage never cease to inspire me. Like most cats, he loves to hunt, pounce, run, and chase. (I have often been gifted with dead rodent parts on the back porch.)
This amazing cat has taught me many important lessons:
Never feel sorry for yourself.
If you do something, do it with all your might.
Incorporate play into each day.
And freely give and receive affection.
Dr. Tania Woerner, owner and sole veterinarian at Tally Oaks Veterinary Wellness Center in Purcellville VA.