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In 2004, I adopted Annabelle from NEAS. Annabelle was about a year old.  She had socialization issues and would not come out from under the bed except to eat and use the litter box for weeks after bringing her home.

I had never before experienced taking on a feral cat with these kinds of issues and called the shelter after the first week had passed with the intention of returning Annabelle and possibly finding what I perceived to be a less difficult cat. The person I spoke with begged me to give Annabelle more time, saying “this kind of patience usually pays off.” I reluctantly agreed to give it two more weeks and within a few days after this conversation, Annabelle was coming out from under the bed and playing with toys we had gotten her.

Several days after that, Annabelle allowed us to pet her and not long after was taking naps on the bed. It’s been 14 years since Annabelle was adopted and she’s grown into a very youthful old lady with an undiminished personality. She has had exposure to dogs, small children and several relocations without any behavioral issues and I’ll always be grateful I gave her the chance that I was advised to give her, as she has been a loving companion all of these years and, hopefully, for many more.