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OCEAN ISLE BEACH—It’s been more than four months since Gunner was brought to Cat Tails, a no-kill feline rescue facility.
But the large orange tabby cat apparently hasn’t forgotten the home he used to have.
Last fall, Gunner’s former owner, a Wilmington man, gave up the 6-year-old cat after getting married. The man said his new wife was allergic to cats, and she also had dogs, according to Cat Tails workers.
Since arriving at Cat Tails, Gunner has shown a preference for men over all the women who volunteer there. But so far he hasn’t had a “single male” taker, who would be the ideal owner for Gunner, shelter volunteer Kathy Fell says.
Prior to getting married, Gunner’s owner doted on the cat.
“They loved each other,” Fell wrote in a recent e-mail to the Beacon.
Then the man took a wife.
“Man got rid of cat and kept wife and cat is brokenhearted,” Fell wrote.
When men stop by Cat Tails to look at cats, she said Gunner “perks up and purrs.”
He also doesn't play well with other cats at the facility.
“Gunner wants all the attention,” says Eileen Markum, volunteer coordinator at Cat Tails, as she let him out of his cage in one of the cat rooms last week.
“He’s a sweet thing—he really is,” added Cat Tails volunteer Jane Nichols, busy cleaning at the facility last week. He just seems to like men more, she said.
Fell said Gunner needs a new owner who’s a single man or widower. But Markum thinks he can adapt to a female owner as well, even though some of the women at the facility have noticed he has a tendency to resist them.
“Women go to Gunner and Gunner swats,” Fell wrote, adding couples have wanted to adopt him, “but he remembers the woman who took his man.”
Gunner didn’t come to the facility because he wasn’t a good cat, shelter volunteer Annetta Cobb said.
But he’s had trouble adjusting because he’s in a strange place with “all these animals and people, and he was used to a home with his owner,” she said.
“He’s a sweetie,” Cobb added.
Fell has thought of running a personal ad for Gunner. She says it should read something like this:
“Six-year-old SYM (single yellow male) seeking SM (single male) over 40 to share my life with. I am independent, love to watch sports and birds. My favorite movie is ‘Homeward Bound.’ Neatness and gourmet cooking are not my priorities. I am only looking for someone who has eyes for me. — Gunner”
Gunner also needs to be the only cat in his new owner's home, Cat Tails workers recommend.
For more information about adopting Gunner, or to see the many other cats and kittens available for adoption, call Cat Tails at 253-1375 or visit the website, www.cattailsnc.org.
Cat Tails is in the Corner Stone center at 6622 Beach Drive in Ocean Isle Beach.
Visiting hours are 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Wednesdays, 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturdays and 1-3 p.m. Sundays. Other hours are by appointment.