Pet of the Week: Ace, a sweet, dominant cat

Ace hangs out in the visiting room at the Winchester SPCA Animal Shelter. Photo by Henry Culvyhouse

WINCHESTER — Despite being middle aged, 9-year-old Ace is still a lively and active cat.

The 11-pound domestic longhair arrived at the Winchester SPCA Animal Shelter in April 2014 because the owner was traveling around and did not have time to care for him, saidKim McDaniel, a cat kennel attendant at the shelter.

However, things were hopeful last May, when he went home with a family that owned cats and dogs. But happily ever didn’t last long, because Ace found himself back in the shelter in January, McDaniel said.

“He was returned because he wasn’t getting along with their other animals,” she said. “He’s great with people, he’s great with kids, it’s just he has to be in a house where he’s the only pet.”

McDaniel said she thinks if a family with children adopts Ace, he would do better with children who are more than 6 years old.

“I think 6 and up is best, because he’s a very dominant cat and if a baby who is smaller than him were to grab him by the tail, he’s liable to have a reaction,” she said. “But older kids know better and the family said he was great with their kids.”

McDaniel said just because he is a “dominant” cat doesn’t mean he is aggressive.

“He likes his space, he is very aware of his surroundings,” she said. “He loves attention and when he wants it, he’ll let you know. He’s not a biter, or much a talker and we’ve never had an issue with him scratching.”

While Ace acts “more like a 3-year-old” cat, he’s not much on playing with toys, McDaniel said. She said he likes to explore his surroundings and get people’s attention.

“I have a scale, between lap cat, half and half and playful cats,” she said. “He’s a bit of a lazy house cat, but I’d say he’s somewhere between half and half and lap cat. He won’t stay on your lap all the time, but he does like attention.”

However, McDaniel noted Ace is not a fan of being picked up and held for prolonged periods of time. Like most cats, she said, when somebody adopts Ace, he or she will have to give him time to explore the house.

“Cats really love consistency, so if they have a dramatic change to their environment, they’re liable to disappear for a couple of days,” McDaniel said. “But he’s fat, so he should be easy to find.”

McDaniel said because he is a longhair, Ace tends to shed a little more than a shorthair. She said Ace needs to be brushed once a day and because he likes to rub on furniture and legs, an adopter should keep a lint brush handy.

Ace is neutered, up to date on all his shots and has no health issues, McDaniel said. She said at the shelter, cats are fed Purina brand dry food and a daily serving tablespoon of wet food, so an adopter would have to ease Ace into a new diet if the food is different.

“The best way to do it is buy a small bag of Purina and mix it in with the brand you plan to feed him,” she said. “We recommend staying away from cheaper brands because the food has dye in it and can give cats diarrhea.”

Ace also has an embedded microchip tracker, so an owner can find him he is lost.

McDaniel said Ace is the perfect match for “anyone without other pets who is looking for an affectionate and active cat.”

“Everyone falls in love with him when they meet him, until they learn his history,” she said.

Ace’s adoption fee is $95, $20 more than the standard fee because he has already been neutered. Anyone interested in adopting Ace or any animal at the Winchester SPCA Animal Shelter can call 540-662-8616 for more information or visit the shelter at 115 Featherbed Lane in Winchester.

The shelter is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday to Saturday and from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday.

Contact staff writer Henry Culvyhouse at 540-465-5137 ext. 184, or hculvyhouse@nvdaily.com