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Rescue Stories: Tux and Willie Four Years Later

Tux and Willie

Every so often the woman who adopted Tux and Willie sends a text with a photo and, “I just love these two so much!” I love it when that happens with one of my rescues, and I know she’s sincere. I was just thinking about them recently and thinking about an update, and her text appeared. It was meant to be! From getting the little family to safety, socializing them, vetting them, and finally finding them a loving forever home, it’s a commitment and a bond that you never really let go of.

Below, all of them together when I’d finally trapped the big orange one on the left. Tux is in the middle and Willie, or Willie Michael, named for his humans’ ancestors, is on the far right.

The Greenbriar kittens.

If you scroll down I have the text of a post from July 2019 that was their first real update. Tux was always friendlier than the others and made the move easily, but his brother Willie was a touch-me-not, timid but friendly. He took his time, and a lot of training and enrichment, to become the lap cat he is today. I was happy to see the two of them just being happy cats in their home, and how big they’d grown by just six months of age.

Another memory entwined: I trapped the litter of feral kittens and their mom in the last few days of October 2018. It’s easy to remember because one of those days was the mass shooting at the Tree of Life synagogue here in Pittsburgh. We just had a remembrance, and I will always remember the joy of successfully trapping the kittens and mom and getting them to safety from a neighbor who had already trapped one of them, Tux, with bad intent, and hearing the news of the shooting that Saturday morning, all in the incessant cold rain. We should do the good we can in this world, and hopefully we will create a society where bad intent and actions are kept at bay because of our actions.

The Six-month Update

This post was from July 2019.

Birds and chipmunks

My friend Susan who adopted two of the kittens trapped on Greenbriar last fall emailed to say hello yesterday, and her email ended with, “One thing….   Thanks for bringing these fur balls into my life!!!” There is nothing a rescuer loves hearing more than that, totally unsolicited, that enthusiastic love for cats would never have had this life if you and others hadn’t stepped in to make a difference. And I know she and her husband are an awesome home for them. I’m an easy cry.

“I just wanted to give you an update on the boys!!! They are so sweet!  Tux will let me do anything to him…he is the best….. I can pick him up, squeeze him, brush him…. Kiss all over him… he doesn’t care… He is a hoot!!!”

Tux was the friendliest of them all, and the most trusting even before trapping, so much so that he walked into the neighbor’s trap and almost got hauled away! Good thing we got him back!

“Willie is coming around.  He really loves [her husband]… he sits on his chair and waits for him to sit with him… he still doesn’t want petted but he rubs against our legs all of the time…he said that is his petting.  He is so happy here…… I’ll send you some pics.  He said one of these days Willie will surprise us and sit on our laps….”

Willie has been a holdout, very resistant to being handled, very unlike Tux. Sometimes this happens with rescues; socialization isn’t always at the same pace among all the kittens in a litter. He and Tux are close, and I think Willie is farther along than he might be if he wasn’t with Tux. But some kitties take time to get all the way there. In the meantime they can do everything else with him and they love him no less.

“Bella and Tux are best buds.  They lay together and sniff noses…. !”

That was something I didn’t expect!

Tux and Bella.

Just a little update on a TNR/trapping project. You can read more about then under Greenbriar cats.

All the photos in “The Six-month Update” were sent by their adopter and are copyrighted to her. None may be used without written permission.


Read other stories in my Rescue Stories series.

Gifts featuring cats you know! Visit Portraits of Animals

Inspired by felines you know! Visit Portraits of Animals!

Feline Gifts from Portraits of Animals!

cat book trio
Cat Book Trio

I find my feline inspirations in my rescues. Here’s a trio of books of my artwork and also with some stories. Read more.


All images and text used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission, although links to your site are more than welcome and are shared. Please ask if you are interested in using and image or story in a print or internet publication. If you are interested in purchasing a print of an image or a product including it, check my animal and nature website Portraits of Animals to see if I have it available already. If you don’t find it there, visit Ordering Custom Artwork for more information on a custom greeting card, print or other item.

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Weekly schedule of features:

Sunday: Essays, Pet Loss, Poetry, The Artist’s Life

Monday: Adoptable Cats, TNR & Shelters

Tuesday: Rescue Stories

Wednesday: Commissioned Portrait or Featured Artwork

Thursday: New Merchandise

Friday: Book Review, Health and Welfare, Advocacy

Saturday: Your Backyard Wildlife Habitat, Living Green With Pets, Creating With Cats

And sometimes, I just throw my hands in the air and have fun!




From health and welfare to rescue and adoption stories, advocacy and art, factual articles and fictional stories, "The Creative Cat" offers both visual and verbal education and entertainment about cats for people who love cats, pets and animals of all species.

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