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Adoption Showcases

You will find our adorable fur kids for adoption weekends at Pet Food Express in Silicon Valley. We can also accommodate appointments in the evenings during the week.

Pet Food Express
1902 South Bascom Avenue 
Campbell [MAP]
12 noon-4:00 pm
2nd & 4th Saturdays

Pet Food Express
15466 Los Gatos Blvd.
Los Gatos [MAP]
12 noon-4:00 pm
Every Saturday



In Memory of Mitty


Our Mitty has left us.

Many of you know this already, but you also know that it has become a healing tradition that, when a Lotti furchild passes away, his mama and daddy compose a farewell letter in his honor. In Mitty’s case, it has taken us a few days to compose ourselves enough to complete this task. Maybe this is because Mitty was our first child. Maybe it’s because we adopted him before we were married and have never been "The Lotti’s" without him. Maybe it’s because, through co-inspiring Unconditional Love Rescue (along with with Maddie Powers Hom), he connected us with some of the most important people in our lives. Maybe it’s because in nearly every way, Mitty exemplified the best of what a soul can possibly be: other-focused, accepting, trusting, loyal, wise. . . a walking and breathing example of unconditional love. And maybe it’s because he patiently taught us the type of people we were capable of becoming in this world, and the profound gratitude mixed with profound grief we have felt since his passing has been beyond difficult to process.

Our Mitty was not simply a rescued pet. He altered our lives from the day he entered them. It was June of 1997 - about a year after we purchased our first home. Truth be told, both of us would have chosen a dog over a cat as our first child - we really had no experience with cats (except the barn variety) and didn’t have an affinity toward them. But because we were both working long hours, we knew a dog was not a reasonable choice. And Lisa was determined to have an animal presence in the house. So off she went to the Humane Society. Initially, she was enamored with a cookies and cream cat named Becky, but when she walked by a row of cages to leave the room, a rather scraggly looking black cat with a broken tail reached out and snagged her shirt. She turned around and locked eyes with "Middy". "4-6 years old", his card read. "Stray." But this was the day she was merely looking, so with one more glance, she left. It took about an hour to comprehend that she had been chosen . . .

So Lisa went back the next day. Middy was still there, waiting for her to commit. Becky had been adopted. It was all coming together, except that Lisa’s grandmother had just passed away, and we had to travel home for a funeral. When Lisa left the HSSV that day, however, she told one of the sweet employees that she was interested in Middy, and gave her number in case he was to be signed down for any reason. If he was adopted by someone else, that was meant to be.

Of course, while we were gone, Middy became sick. Several desperate messages greeted us on return from Grandma Cecil’s funeral. So with George admonishing, "You realize, Middy will be your cat . . .", Lisa left for the Humane Society, picked up a sneezing, goopy-eyed "signed for euthanasia" cat and brought him home. We’d already agreed that we would change the spelling of Middy’s name to Mitty (after Archbishop Mitty High School). So, with friend Tracy’s help (George was at work), we set up the litter box, took Mitty out of his HSSV transport carrier, placed him in the litter box, and waited for him to take off and hide (as most cats do). Instead, he sniffed around, looked at Lisa, crawled into her lap, bunted her and purred. And when George got home, Mitty walked right up to his new dad and bunted him, too, his volcano tail high in the air. Dad virtually melted on the spot, and Mitty began his reign as king of the house.

That night, when we went to bed, we showed Mitty his fluffy brand new kitty bed that was positioned right next to our bed. Obligingly, he crawled in, hunkered down, and slept. This would be the last time that cat bed was used. The following evening, after Lisa finished brushing her teeth, she rounded the corner to see Mitty snuggled up in bed with his dad. "It’s just for a minute," promised George. That minute was actually 14 years long: from that night on, Mitty slept between his mama and daddy "even on our wedding night" until his final two weeks of being sick. Those weeks, he crawled under the covers with his mom and pressed his little body against hers in a spooned position. The most amazing thing, though, is on his final night with us, we awoke to find he had wiggled his way between us one last time. Mr. Mitty always had the final say.

Mitty was an only cat for about 11 months, which was not to his liking. Consequently, we spent a few evenings chasing him around the neighborhood after he slipped out the front door to go look for kitty buddies. We realized this was his issue when, one day, we saw him lying down in our garage, front leg extended under the side door, touching paws with a neighborhood kitty. So off to the Humane Society Lisa went--this time in search of a mellow, gentle kitten soul that Mitty could mentor. Enter Ping, a demure little whisp of a long-haired gray kitten in his cage - and a devil once we got him home. Ping hissed and spit and swatted his new brother. Mitty waited and purred. Ping catapulted around the room. Mitty watched and purred. It took about two days of Ping hissy-fit before he was being bathed from nose to tail by his older brother. The two became inseparable, and Mitty never even attempted to escape outside again.

It became clearer and clearer to us with each passing month that Mitty had a much higher purpose in our lives than just being a resident fur presence. One of George’s favorite stories has to do with our frustration with Ping, who decided he was going to use our pristine new carpet as his scratching pad. George was reading Ping the riot act one day when Mitty walked over, looked him in the eyes and in kitty cat language said, "I’ve got this, Dad." He then put his paw on Ping’s neck and looked him squarely in the eyes. Not a sound - just a look. And Ping didn’t scratch the carpet ever again after that - we kid you not. One of Lisa’s favorite memories is George "taking Mitty for walks." He would carry Mitty, in his arms with Mitty’s paws over his forearm, around the block. Not once did Mitty try to jump down. Not once did he freak at cars, other animals, barking dogs, strange construction noises . . . Mitty had a calmness of soul that confounded us. We were frenetic, working like crazy, just starting our lives and wishing days away for weekends and paychecks. We were quick to become frustrated over little things. Mitty anchored us - taught us it was ok to nap on the couch, or take a walk, or just sit with a purring presence on our laps. I swear - we remained sane during those early times because each day, we would arrive home to a little black face waiting for us in the window - reminding us what was really important. Suddenly, the world would be an ok place.

You are probably wondering at this point if there was anything about Mitty that wasn’t perfect. There were several interesting Mitty-isms that we think may have cost him his first home. The whole "Mitty in the Middle" thing was challenging, because if Lisa didn’t acquiesce to Mitty’s demand to be in the middle, he would grab her hair with his teeth and give a tug, or two, or ten - until she moved. When we adopted Mitty, George was waking up at 4 a.m. to get to work super early. Mitty internalized that time for the entirety of his life. This meant that, at 4 a.m. every day - weekends included - he would climb onto George’s chest and give him an entire face bath. He did not bathe his mama’s face - she raised too much ruckus about that. But for George and Mitty, that 5 minutes became sacred time - a ritual that not many people would or will understand, but that doesn’t matter. Mitty gave George his final face bath the day before we lost him. His kitty cat nose was barely working and it was difficult for him to breathe while licking and bunting his daddy, but he kept at it for an extra long time. It was as if he knew.

For his first ten or so years with us, Mitty had an interesting habit of humping any clothing we left on the ground. It was pretty hysterical to find laundry so twisted up that we had to literally "untangle" it. But it was one of Mitty’s massive pleasures in life, and it made for a lot of chuckles between mama and daddy. Mitty was also a "bathroom cat" - if you sat down with the door open, he was instantaneously on your lap and would protest vehemently when you tried to place him on the floor where he belonged. It wasn’t long before we just caved to the fact that, whether it’s the sports page or a purring cat, a bathroom ritual is a bathroom ritual.

Mitty was our first but all of you know that many other Lotti children (and foster children) entered our home because of Unconditional Love Rescue. Whereas Ping was put off by the lesser presences, Mitty absolutely adored each new addition - even the dogs. We have photos of Mitty snuggling kittens, big dogs, little dogs - you name it - Mitty understood it. We never once heard him hiss or object in any way to another little one - even when that little one hissed or barked at him. Mitty patiently trained Ping, but he also trained Harley and Mickelson to be wonderful little feline souls - and he loved Hans and Luke, even when they were terrified feral monsters. He even adored Gatsby, who was a cat chaser and generally a little piss-ant. Mitty taught us that mere "tolerance" was substandard - unconditional love was his mantra. This lesson has been internalized deeply by his mama and daddy in homage to him. Mitty made his parents less judgmental. He made us better listeners. He made us understand the world was not simply about us, and that challenges were most often blessings in disguise...

We started this tribute by announcing that Mitty had left us. But after spending a few hours at the computer flooded in memories of the sweetest long-haired eight pound black cat with a broken tail - a cat who shouldn’t have been alive past June of 1997 - we would like to amend that beginning. Mitty won’t ever really leave us. His stocking will hang on the mantle at Christmas. His face will grace our holiday cards. We will be reminded of him every time we tie our shoelaces (oh, how he loved shoe laces). We will think of him every time we struggle to comb the crap out of the other long-haired felines (Mitty adored the comb). We will imagine him on the tile floor doing "the roll" on command (he would tuck his little head and roll over for belly rubs). But most of all, we will live our lives as good people who see each day as a new opportunity to love more, learn more, play more, accept more, and give more. Because inside our hearts lives a little black cat who taught us, by his own example, that there is nothing more important than this.


Mitty’s daddy and mommy would like to thank Dr. Rachel Boltz for being Mitty’s super fantastic veterinarian, and Dr. Denise Johnsen, who, for the second time in less than a year, helped a Lotti child exit this earth in the most kind and gentle of ways. We love and respect you both more than we could ever say - you are our superheroes!

Copyright © 2009 Unconditional Love Animal Rescue. All Rights Reserved.