Happy Endings - 1

Sharing one's life with a pet can be an immensely rewarding experience. Whether we live with others in a busy household or we live alone, the presence of a pet can enhance our lives immeasurably. Here are some stories told to us by people living in Moscow about the animals who share their lives.    

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Amy Wexler (White & Case Moscow)

Amy & Brad Wexler with Missy

How people treat animals, is an indication of how they treat each other! 

For me, having a "pet" is rewarding and therapeutic. I don't know what I would do without my dog. 

She fills an empty space in my life!!!!


Julia Drew-Watt

Julia with Izzy & ZenZen

I have adopted two wonderful cats with two very different stories.

Isabella, a tiny gray-black shorthair, is an absolute sweetheart, but had a very rough kitten hood. When we found her in a park, a crow three times her size was viciously attacking her - it was one of the most disturbing sights I've ever seen. We scared away the crow and took her home, where Yuri and Valeria came over to examine her. Her injuries weren't life-threatening, but she was barely a month old, so for the first few weeks I carried her with me everywhere in a cotton shopping bag. She was quite content to curl up on a towel in the bag and sleep while I wandered around town, and even came to work with me.

Eventually I had to start leaving her at home, which is when I adopted ZenZen , a huge furry gray and white Houdini who has learned how to open cupboards and drawers. Any day now I expect him to take my car on a joyride. He was one of a litter found in the Allied Pickford moving warehouse, and is about a week older than his new sister. Izzy and Zen have a great time chasing one another around and knocking things over, which after all is what cats do. They're almost two years old now, and I can't imagine life without them.

Nick Rees & Tania Bartiouk

" Kosha " walked into the Allied Pickfords warehouse a few months ago -after our previous warehouse cat had been adopted and living space had become available. He was recently adopted by Tania Bartiouk, who works for Allied Pickfords Moscow, and her boyfriend Nick Rees.

Kosha "before "

My family back home in Wales had been blessed with a beautiful Border Collie dog from the age of 11 until a few months after I came to Russia 9 years ago when she sadly died.

I have such wonderful memories of my dog that I have never replaced her and certainly didn't expect to ever have "owned" a cat. One day, my girlfriend Tanya came home from work suggesting that we look after a stray cat that was in their warehouse at Allied Pickfords.

Kosha "after" (with Nick)

Day after day, we discussed it and even though neither of us was keen on cats, we didn't want to say that we would "reject" giving the cat a chance. So, we opted for the trial period option given to us by the vets.

When the cat was delivered, he was very dirty and needed to be bathed (something my dog liked but the cat obviously didn't) - it was a story in itself! He was extremely reclusive and whenever he got the chance he would hide under one of the sofas or behind the kitchen table. He was nervous and I just wanted him to know he was safe....for now!

As I said before, cats had never been my favorite animal but I found myself worrying about him - worrying whether he was frightened, nervous, happy or sad. Eventually he came out of his shell and started to spend more time closer to us.

This little lad has changed so much over the last 6 weeks. He's gone from being a frightened, dirty stray to a lovely, warm, friendly (if not hungry) family pet who adores attention and being played with. OK, dogs might be our preference but we would never have believed that we could enjoy having a cat so much!

Peter Bryan and Malysh


In a moment of madness as I returned from the bread stall this afternoon I noticed a tiny stray kitten that nearly got run over by a passing car. I reached down and contrary to the behaviour of all cats I've ever known - it approached me!  

And then the next weird thing happened - I found myself picking it up and walking home. It goes without saying that I think both kitten and Peter were pretty unsure at that moment!  As Liz opened the door I showed her the fresh bread I had in one hand and the tiny kitten I had in the other. We laughed and set about feeding this tiny creature who had no name.  

Oh my, what have I done?

Thankfully she's learned where the litter tray was pretty quickly and despite a smelly bottom and huge appetite settled in pretty quickly. It must have thought to itself - "God - I've hit it big time - if only mama could see me now - cor she'd be pleased!"   

We haven't told our landlord yet - God I hope he hasn't dialed into this site!  Alexander - do you mind?    Come on look at that little face!

We've named her Malyshka incidentally, which means "Little one" in Russian. Imaginative I know, although I was tempted by "Kitty"!  I guess now she's got a name she'll be hanging around for a while!!

An update (11th Oct) I think is required on this new tiny kitten that I rescued last week and that now commands all of my attention (and dare I say more and more of my money). 

The vets came round last night and the big news is that Malyshka is actually .........wait for it...... A BOY!!!!!   So I've changed her name by depoll to " Malysh " and informed all the cats in the local area :-)Poor thing - I've been calling it a girl this last week - it must have been mortified, let alone confused by it's new eccentric owner.

Anyway the main thing is she is perfectly healthy - albeit a tad thin.  I've received lots of really good advice about to look after her - or HIM!! - they think he's about 6 weeks old and told me that I am now his papa - so I'll have to clean his bottom and keep him warm like her mama would have!  He had a little infection in his bottom which was sorted out and he was given pills for any possible worms.   At first he was very scared of these two new people in the apartment, hiding behind the sofa (just like they do in the films!) but he quickly warmed to them and thankfully he was give the all clear right across the board! What's more we had lots of detailed conversation as well about his faces which I won't go into here and now.

What a palava!  But he is very cute. Currently, as I type this, he's lying on my neck - behind my head, purring gently. Thankfully also the smelly bottom is no more.   I shall begin investing for school fees some time now......

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