Roosevelt, Who Has Brightened the Lives of So Many Vacationers, Now Sets His Sights on Saving Other Homeless Cats and Dogs
"... he (Roosevelt) just loves it here. He's like a concierge. He goes on the deck and greets people. Everyone loves him."
-- Leslie Blain
No one is quite certain where Roosevelt came from; he simply wandered onto the grounds of Lake Quinault Lodge on Washington State's Pacific Coast one day last spring and things have never been quite the same ever since. (See photo above.)
Named in honor of the thirty-second president of the United States who stayed at the lodge on October 1, 1937, the black tomcat quickly captured the hearts of both staffers and vacationers alike. He was eventually sterilized and vaccinated and is now arguably the establishment's most popular attraction.
He is so popular in fact that employees spend their breaks with him and guests take him along with them on their hikes through surrounding Olympia National Park. He is, however, always punctual about returning to his favorite spot on a couch in front of the fireplace in the lodge's cozy lounge. (See photo below.)
For Christmas, he even received a cigar filled with catnip from a group of satisfied guests and admirers. The accompanying card said simply, "Thank you for being a gentleman."
Roosevelt also seems to like his new digs. "...he just loves it here," waitress Leslie Blain told The Daily World of nearby Aberdeen on December 21st. (See "Resort's Adopted Cat Helps Raise Money for Pets.") "He's like a concierge. He goes on the deck and greets people. Everyone loves him."
If all that Roosevelt ever accomplished during his brief sojourn upon this earth was to become head mouser, mascot, and concierge of a famous resort that would have been sufficient in and of itself. The Fates, however, had other plans in store for him.
His presence at the lodge got staffers to pondering the plight of other homeless cats and dogs in the area and out of these ruminations it was decided that they would join forces with other community leaders in building a no-kill shelter in Aberdeen. Toward that end, a Roosevelt Giving Tree featuring a photograph of the cat in place of a star at the top has been erected in the lobby.
So far, an unspecified amount of cash has been collected as well as a considerable amount of feline and canine provisions. The money will be given to the proposed Coastal Animal Rescue and Adoption (CARE) Center while the food will be donated to groups already charged with caring for the community's homeless animals.
While no-kill shelters are a definite step in the right direction, CARE's announced intention to continue killing homeless animals with medical and so-called behavioral problems is morally indefensible. Sick animals need and deserve medical care and sanctuaries can be found for those that have been abused in the past and are therefore difficult to place in new homes.
No-kill should mean an end to all killings. That is certainly the way that Roosevelt and other cats and dogs would want it to be if they were able to talk.
Photos: David Sandler of The Daily World (Roosevelt) and Travelocity (fireplace).