Jellybean the Persian cat

No one knows where Jellybean came from, and she’s not microchipped. But she ran into a foreigner’s home in Daejeon about a year ago, and her temporary guardian left the country. In July, Jellybean’s second foster mom posted an urgent last-minute request and said she’d release Jellybean into the street if no one could take her.

After Pedro went to Canada in 2010 and Bangsiri’s heart took a turn for the worse in 2011, I decided not to take in any more fosters. Despite that promise I took the subway to Seoul Station after work one day in July, and Jellybean was handed over to me—the day before her foster mom boarded a plane for the United States.

I considered it a temporary emergency arrangement. When no one else came forward, I considered taking her to a cat café or a no-kill shelter because I felt I wasn’t in a position to take care of her.

But Jellybean has been part of my family for more than a month now. At first I kept her in a separate room, but vets said it was safe for her to join the household even though she’d been exposed to a coronavirus. She’s sweet and playful, she drinks out of taps, and she hates travelling. My own cats, Phoenix and Gemma, aren’t allowed on countertops, but I had to relax the rules and clear off the kitchen counter for Jellybean.

When a young couple submitted an adoption application, I wanted to screen them thoroughly but I didn’t want to put them off. Allie from Whiskers Ministop had agreed to help me screen applicants, but she didn’t want to make the final decision. I met the prospective adopters with Jellybean at the May clinic, where Dr. Kwon diagnosed her with periodontitis. She needs more tests, and she may need surgery to remove a bad tooth.

The prospective adopters were very patient with the process and they answered all my questions. They seemed like responsible people, and they seemed to understand that adoption is a lifetime commitment. After further tests confirmed Jellybean was in good general health, they decided to adopt her and they agreed to pay for her blood tests and dental work. She’s scheduled to go home on Saturday, and I’m going to miss her.


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