Gula (May 2004 - July 27, 2005)
short for Caligula, because it means "little boots"

We found Gula hiding under my car in early June, 2004. Tom chased him down and we took him home. The idea was that we'd find someone who wanted to adopt him, since we already had three cats. Tom had to go to work that night, so I sat close to Gula in the back bedroom, away from the other cats, and gave him milk and talked to him. Eventually I convinced him I wasn't going to eat him and he sat in my lap for a while.
We got attached to Gula pretty quickly. Okay, it was mostly me, but Tom liked him too. I even bought a shirt with a winged cat who looked like Gula on it. When he got out and we couldn't find him, we put posters up all over the place. Eventually he came back to us on his own. Either that or the weasely little neighbor kid who was hiding him finally decided it would be too much trouble to keep him.
As you can see from a lot of these pictures, Gula was friendly and fit in very well with the other cats. He even tried to make friends with Pandora (not shown) but she wasn't interested. Gula played a lot with Panther (the black and white one) and was always her buddy. She looked out for him even when he got to be bigger than her.
As he grew up, Gula developed into a very handsome, strongly-built cat. He always kept that kittenish smile, though. Tom was always threatening to put him in the stew pot. Maybe that's why he would cut up little pieces of shrimp and give them to Gula - to fatten him up.
One of Gula's funnier habits is not shown here. We have a door with a big window in it. Gula liked to leap up, grab the bottom of the window with his claws, and hang there while staring out the window. I tried several times to catch him doing this on camera but he always saw me coming and dropped off.
He also liked to burst in on people in the bathroom. Mostly he liked to roll around on the floor and purr while you petted him. If he caught me in the tub, though, he got a little worried. He'd put his feet up on the tub, look at the water, look at me, and meow. "Don't you know there's water in there?" Then he'd go get Panther.
Smiling Kitten Picture
Mister Blue, you did it right
But soon comes Mister Night, creepin' over.
Now his hand is on your shoulder.
Never mind. I'll remember you this-
I'll remember you this way.

Electric Light Orchestra
"Mr. Blue Sky"
On July 15th, we took Gula to the vet because he was breathing heavily and found out that he had fluid around his lungs from feline leukemia. The vet said he probably had been infected before we found him. We decided not to isolate him because the other cats would already have been exposed for as long as we had him. We did everything we could to save Gula, or at least make him more comfortable, but he just kept getting worse no matter what we did. He died at home. It was quick and Panther and I were both with him at the end.

 

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