Elizabeth first learned about Phinney’s after receiving help to care for her pup, Morty.
“Morty developed sudden stones in his bladder and needed very expensive surgery,” remembers Elizabeth. “Daniela took us to the emergency vet, and Phinney’s was able to foot the entire bill. I’ve been so grateful for Phinney’s,” Elizabeth said.
Witnessing how much good Phinney’s can bring into a home inspired Elizabeth to reach out. When she asked for Phinney’s help to rehome Morty, and he was transferred to a lovely family who could give him the exercise he needed, Elizabeth became a Phinney’s volunteer. She coordinated all the emergency requests.
A medical condition forced her to resign from that position, but she was happy to volunteer as a foster parent, which is a much-needed task. Most of Phinney’s volunteers already have a house full of pets, so it is difficult for the organization to find loving homes for the animals who lose their owners.
“I was always getting cats from Phinney’s. I’ve probably had about ten cats from them,” Elizabeth said.
When asked why she does it, Elizabeth stated that it’s because animals have always been an important part of her life. She keeps a picture on her living room wall of her older brother and her with their old dog Bruce.
“I was only two,” she reminisces about the picture. “I can’t imagine life without animals. They’re part of the family.”
Life wasn’t always easy for Macy before Phinney’s collected him from an animal shelter in the Boston area
Five years ago, Macy’s mom contacted Phinney’s because she was homeless, and her cat, Macy, had been boarded at a shelter for six months, within the confinements of a wire crate. Her cat needed a friendly place to stay while she looked for housing.
“He was a mess when they got him out,” said Elizabeth, Macy’s permanent foster mom (Phinney’s fosters forever the pets in the program who are unadoptable). “He had little contact with people and no social life,” remembered Daniela Caride, president of Phinney’s.
After placing Macy at a temporary foster home for a few weeks, Phinney’s asked Elizabeth if she would take him in. At the time, Macy was quite the mystery — no one knew much about his background, personality and needs. Elizabeth had no idea what to expect.
At first, having Macy was tough.
“He had issues — he had forgotten how to be affectionate, he never ate, and he bit. Huge huge bites,” Elizabeth remembers.
Elizabeth made a breakthrough by employing patience and compassion. Now she refers to Macy as “quite the charmer.”
“He learned really quickly. He’s very affectionate now, rubbing on everyone who comes in to visit,” she added.
Macy feels deeply bonded to Elizabeth. When she returned home after being hospitalized, he made sure to give her the stink eye, “like ‘how dare you leave me!’” Elizabeth said.
Macy’s cherished daily routine includes his favorite pastimes of watching TV and peering out the window. He and Elizabeth also spend a lot of quality time playing.
“His favorite toy is that inexpensive dancing one, that dancing cat. We play for at least 45 minutes every single night. He plays with the toy with me, then he gets brushed, and when the lights go out, he goes to sleep,” Elizabeth says.
Now one of Macy’s greater charms is his demeanor, as he has relaxed and learned that he can count on love.
Elizabeth has changed Macy’s life, and Macy has made her so happy in return. Like most older pets, he is so grateful for his loving home and sense of security..
“I highly recommend people not be hesitant to take in older animals,” Elizabeth added. “He brings joy into my life. Particularly as one gets older and you have fewer responsibilities, it’s wonderful to have one or more other creatures.”