Where you were before Story
This story is about a young girl who wonders about what kind of life her rescued cat, Polly, had lived before she was adopted.
Polly, with your soft paws and whiskers that tickle my face, what was your life like before you became such a happy little cat?
Tonight you’re sleeping curled up in a ball and beside my socked feet. In winter, your favourite place is right in front of the heater. You always love to sleep on something soft, like on the couch, on my pillow or even on a pile of dirty laundry.
But where did you sleep before you were here? And what happened when it got really cold?
I imagine you all alone, huddled up under a garbage bin. I imagine you squinting your eyes shut to the rain and your tiny body shuddering at the thunder.
The people at the animal shelter said they found you running away from an angry man. They said you had no home, and that you made the man angry because you would sleep in his garden sometimes.
Polly, with your bright, big eyes and ears that are always listening, tonight you ate your dinner quickly, even though you ate a very big lunch!
But where did you eat before you were here? Was there anybody there to feed you?
I imagine you walking along the street, in that quiet way you sometimes go. I imagine you sneaking under buildings and inside rubbish bins, searching for scraps to eat.
The people at the animal shelter said they found you very skinny. They said that they could see your bones and that you may not have eaten for days.
Polly, with your happy purr and tail wrapped ’round my ankles, I’m so happy that you’re here with me, and no longer where you were before. I feel happy that I can keep you safe and loved. But most of all, I feel happy to have a friend like you.
(1) How do you think Polly the cat ended up on the streets in the first place? Was she somebody’s beloved pet who got lost? Did her owners decide they didn’t want her anymore? Do you think it is fair for people to abandon their pets when they no longer want them?
(2) The little girl in the story wondered about what her cat’s life was like on the streets. Can you imagine what it would’ve been like for Polly? How did she get food? Could somebody take her to the vet when you became sick? How do you think other people would’ve treated her?
(3) How do you think Polly was rescued by the animal shelter mentioned in the story? Do you think she would’ve been scared of humans at first? Do you think it would’ve been hard to look after her at the shelter, especially when there were many other cats to look after?
Image sourced from: downthatlittlelane.com.au