Getting My Cat, Coco


Mia Lin

Coco will always be an important part of my life.

Mia Lin, Staff Writer

I sat on the carpeted stairs in my home, the sunlight hitting the side of my face. The warmth gave me a cozy, relaxing feeling. I flipped through the memories in my mind that I still remembered, as if I was turning the pages of a book. I stopped at this one thought, the one where I got my cat, Coco. I closed my eyes for a moment and sunk further into the stairs. 

It was a pretty normal day, well, for most people. For me, it was exciting and promising. Something I’ve been looking forward to for many years. I had finally convinced my parents to take me to the cat shelter nearby. It wasn’t a definite yes that I would get a cat, but it was at least a 50, 50 chance.

We drove to the cat shelter, my dad, mom, and I. It was a quick trip, and we came home without a cat, but with a pink piece of paper so that we could go again.

The next day, I pleaded with my mom to go to the shelter again. Eventually she gave in. Well, after a long time of me promising to do many things.

“Are you going to feed the cat?”


“Clean up after the cat?”


“Litter box?”


“You promise?”


“Are you sure.”

“Yes I’m sure.”

I had my eyes on this one cat, a male black and white cat, or maybe I should say kitten. His name was Wiggly. 

My mom and I drove over to the shelter again. We looked for Wiggly, but he wasn’t there. Not dispirited at all, I looked at the other kittens and cats. 

My mom pointed out this one cat who just came that day, her name was Saffron. She was a brown tabby cat with hazel eyes. We were allowed to interact with Saffron for a little bit. Almost immediately, Saffron was getting in my lap and rubbing her cheeks on my leg. 

My mom and I got Saffron, just like that. Now, I’m not saying that I regret getting Coco (her name was Saffron before), but I’m not sure we were ready for a cat. No amount of research could prepare you for your first pet.

We had to wait a few days until we could get Saffron (Coco) because she had to get spayed. 

My mom and I went to the pet store and got a couple of supplies. Being new pet owners, I don’t think that we got the right supplies for Coco but it was a start.

Then it was the day we were supposed to pick up Coco. We arrived at the shelter and opened the door. My mind was buzzing as we got into a line in front of the frontdesk. It seemed like three hours of talking with the front desk person about what we were supposed to do with this four month old furball. It went something like this:

“Uh, what size cat food bowl should we get? This one?” My dad asked as he held up a silver pet food bowl.

“No, no! That one is for a dog, a big dog. Take this one.” The front desk person handed us a cat food bowl about three sizes smaller than the first one.

“How many times do we have to go to the vet? And which vet do you recommend? And which vaccines and tests has she gotten? Do you recommend a plastic or fabric carrier? How much food are we supposed to give her? What’s the balance between dry food and wet food?”


I don’t know how the front desk person managed to answer most of our questions in such a short amount of time.

Next thing I knew, we were handed Saffron. I had thought about what we were going to name Saffron, and settled with the name Coco. It just seemed so right for her, even though everyone else in my family wanted to name her Mochi. Guess which one we chose. 

Over the first week, I learned a lot about Coco. She was a cat who was friendly to humans, but she didn’t like other cats. She wasn’t an outdoor cat, I learned that the hard way. That’s one perfectly good harness put to waste and two hours of my life trying to get Coco in the harness and out the door that I’ll never get back. As well as my eardrums, that were probably permanently damaged from that ear-piercing yowl, and my shoulder, that might as well been broken when Coco was running from fear as a car went by while my hands were still wrapped around the leash.

Sometimes, I like to think that Coco was really smart, and she only got in my lap and was nice to me to get out of the shelter, but I won’t ever know for sure if that was what she was planning. World domination might be next on her list.

I slowly opened my eyes. What a wonderful memory. I thought as I glanced at Coco, who was licking herself not too far away. She looked up and meowed. I smiled. Every time I think about her, I think about the many steps it has taken me to get her. Coco will always be an important part of my life.