Lessons from Pump
Reflecting on the "My Cat From Hell" star's recent evictionPublished September 21, 2012
The other night I received an update from a friend about Pump, a 23 year-old senior orange tabby cat whose incredible story was aired two weeks ago on Jackson Galaxy's "My Cat From Hell." Knowing I’m a huge fan of “Cat Daddy” Jackson Galaxy and avidly follow his show on Animal Planet, she was interested in hearing my reaction.
Pump, a sweet senior pet, was definitely not the typical aggressive or “badly” behaving kitty generally featured on the program. In fact, all he wanted was to be accepted and loved by Lucas’ wife Candice, an energy healer. Lucas had adopted the kitty from an ex-girlfriend 12 years before, but Candice had never bonded with Pump, since, in her eyes, he interfered with her healing work by rubbing up against and hiding among the beautiful silk scarves she used when engaging her healing energy with clients.
As a result of this conflict, Candice wanted Lucas to find a home for Pump, even though the senior catizen was nearing the end of his life.
Trying to keep Pump’s home intact, Jackson worked with Candice compassionately and tenderly. His cat mojo worked its magic, even inspiring Candice to perform energy work on the elderly kitty. The orange cat soaked up the energy like beams of radiant sunshine, purring and resting quietly on her table. And as a result of this remarkable interaction, Candice agreed to continue giving him energy, promising to keep Pump.
But two days later when many “My Cat from Hell” fans posted inquiries about how Pump was doing on Candice’s Facebook page, they were outraged and devastated when they learned Pump had been given away to her mother-in-law. Her “sacred” promise had been broken and all “Hell” broke loose. According to Catster, Candice had to take down her Facebook page and Jackson Galaxy himself posted a message on his blog urging perspective: “Often the complexities of relationships go well beyond what we can address on air, and of course life goes on after the cameras turn off.”
I must admit that initially I too was furious. This gut-reaction was followed with deep disappointment and sadness as I thought about the loss Pump must have experienced. But after I quieted and centered myself, my heart told me I was overreacting.
Although we strive to keep promises, humans are far from perfect. Since we have never walked in Candice’s shoes, we will never know what prompted her promise to give Pump a forever home, what drove her to give him up or what she was feeling when she broke that pledge.
And Candice did not simply abandon Pump, or surrender him to a shelter; an excellent home was found. “Pump is at home with Lucas’ mom, who truly does love him,” noted the famed cat behaviorist on JacksonGalaxy.com.
Upon even further reflection, I thought back over the many years I have been owned by an amazing number of cats. I would like to think that we are chosen by every pet that comes to live with us and there’s a great mystery surrounding the reason that they have selected us from all others on the planet.
It’s possible Pump has offered all of the "My Cat From Hell" fans a valuable lesson about empathy and unconditional love for both ourselves and others. I would very much like to believe that is so.
What do you think? Share your thoughts in a comment.
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