I first met Grant and his brother Harry earlier this year when they were just 8 months old. Harry had come along first, then Alan, his human carer decided that he needed some company - and this is where Grant came along.
It wasn't long, however, when Harry started to turn into a fairly independent sort of cat who liked his new brother, but to be honest, wasn't that bothered whether he was there or not. He'd go off on adventures while Grant was a bit more of a homebody. Grant was always watching Harry, and would frequently follow him around. It was Grant who needed Harry.
Then one day Harry went out and didn't return. Grant was beside himself, so upset. I was booked to come and look after them that weekend, just the day after he disappeared. I'd go in the garden to call for Harry, and so would Grant. He'd run around everywhere looking for him, calling his name all the while. He was so upset that I stayed a long time to comfort him. He settled down on the sofa right next to me, and the pain in his eyes when he looked up was raw. It broke my heart to leave him that evening.
He never did return, despite Alan putting up notices, delivering flyers, and knocking on neighbours' doors. I like to think that, being an adventurous sort, he wandered a little too far from home and got himself lost, unable to find his way back. Unfortunately Alan had not got around to having them microchipped, and his collar had also got lost the day before - there was no way for anyone to identify him if they found him. I picture him in another loving family, being happy again.
Anyway, a couple of weeks ago Alan called me to book me to come cat sitting again - and there was some great news!! Grant had a new little brother!! I went round to meet him first, rather than showing up, and having him wondering who I was. Alan told me he'd found him a different new brother a few weeks before, but Grant is a rather gentle soul, and quickly found himself being bullied by this new family member. He wasn't a nasty cat, just a lot more confident than Grant, but Grant allowed him to take over. He'd hide from him, and really wasn't happy at all. So unfortunately he had to go back to where he'd come from. He was a very friendly cat, so I've no worry at all that he'd have found himself a more suitable new home.
The new boy is only about 16 weeks old, and as yet doesn't have a name - although I've taken to calling him Dylan, as it seems to suit him. At first Grant ran away from even this tiny little scrap, but soon learnt to love him. Now he takes good care of him, watching him everywhere he goes as though he's not going to let another one disappear - I'm still convinced he blames himself. It's so sweet watching them playing, then snuggling up together while Grant licks the little one. It's going to take him a little longer yet, but he's definitely on the way back to being a happy cat again.