Amazing Kids! Magazine

Animal City Purr Mode

By Ainsley, age 10, Canada



Samantha Green didn’t mean to nag; she really didn’t. She just really, really wanted a cat. When Samantha was four years old, she found a rock outside, gave it the name Daisy, and pretended it was a cat. When Samantha was five, she went out as a black cat for Halloween. When she was six, she went out as a white cat, and when she was seven, she went out as cat-woman. Now that Samantha is 10, she is going to start volunteering at Animal City, the animal shelter near her house. Although Samantha has been told by both her parents and her sisters, Bethany and Jillian, that they aren’t getting a cat, she is still trying to find ways to make her dream come true.

Chapter 1: A Manx Morning

“Okay, Mom. My bag’s ready, and I’m ready to go,” Samantha called down to her mom. “When do we leave?”

“Three hours, Samantha. It starts at eight, and please say you didn’t wake up Jillian or Bethany.”

“I didn’t, I didn’t, Mom, but can’t we leave a bit early?” Samantha asked. As it was Samantha’s first day, her mom agreed. They left at seven-thirty.

To get to the shelter, they drove down their street, Gravity Blvd. Then they drove to Green Grass Crescent and finally down Sunflower Seed Drive. They parked and walked in. They went to the front desk to figure out where to go, but before they asked, Samantha saw some flowers on the front desk. She asked the lady at the desk if she liked flowers. “I love flowers, and I always have them on my desk, so you can take one every day before you go home,” the lady said. “Now why are you here?” she asked.

“I am here to volunteer with the cats,” Samantha told her. The lady told Samantha and her mom to go down the hallway, up the stairs, and into the first room. When they got to the volunteering room, they saw all the animals, and Samantha locked eyes with a cat named Whiskers, who she knew was a Manx. Whiskers was black and white with the cutest little, pink nose.

“Okay, Samantha, I’m going now. I’ll pick you up at three,” Samantha’s mom told her. After Samantha’s mom left, she soon found out which animals were the nice, cuddly ones and which were not so nice. She got used to the smell of the animals and the smell of their food. By noon, Samantha knew the whole building. She even had a mental map of everything in the building: the rooms, the stairs, the kitchen, and of course the cage that her favorite cat, Whiskers, stayed in. When it was time to go, Samantha met her mom at the front desk and picked a tulip from the receptionist’s flowers to take home with her. While they drove home, Samantha told her mom all about her day and, of course, about Whiskers.

Chapter 2: A Cat-astrophe

“Mom, can we get going?” Samantha asked. “Please, it’s already seven-fifty-two.”

“Yes, honey. Just get your shoes on, and I’ll be there in a minute,” her mom said. They got in their car and started driving to Animal City. Halfway there, Samantha saw a cat in an alleyway in between the barber’s shop and the bakery. It looked familiar, but Samantha couldn’t recall where or when she had seen it. Then it hit her. That cat was Whiskers!

“Mom, stop the car! Hurry! It’s Whiskers, over there, in between the barber’s shop and the bakery,” Samantha yelled.

“Okay, okay, Samantha,” her mom said, “And don’t yell at me. You scared me!” Her mom pulled the car over and parked it.

As soon as the car was off, Samantha ran over to Whiskers and hugged him. “You shouldn’t run away from the shelter, silly; they’re just trying to help you.”

She carried Whiskers into the car and sat him down on the seat. She started to put the seat belt on him when her mom said, “Honey, you don’t need to put the seat belt on him. If you put him on the ground, he won’t get hurt. Besides, we’re almost there.” Samantha put Whiskers on the ground and did up her own seat belt. Her mom started driving again. When they got there, Samantha carefully brought Whiskers up the stairs to the volunteer room and put him on the ground. Then she went and told the manager of Animal City where she had found Whiskers. The manager said that he had a reputation for running away by jumping out the window.

Chapter 3: Allergy Alert

“Achoo! Ugh, my eyes are so itchy,” Samantha told her mom one afternoon when they were driving home from the shelter.

“When did they start feeling itchy?” her mom asked her.

“Since I started volunteering on the first day of summer vacation. I just didn’t tell you because I thought it would go away, but it didn’t,” Samantha explained.

“We’ll stop at the pharmacy on our way to the house,” her mom told her, “and I’m sorry, but you may have to stop volunteering because I think you’re allergic to cats.” They stopped at the pharmacy and picked up what the pharmacist suggested, Benadryl. When they got home, Samantha took some Benadryl, ate dinner, and went to bed.

The next morning, she woke up, got dressed, ate breakfast, and drove to the shelter with her mom. They got there right on time, and Samantha could smell the flowers right as she walked in. They were roses this time. Samantha didn’t have a terrific morning. Her eyes were really bugging her, and she was sneezing every couple of minutes, but she found ways to make it a good day. By the end of the day, she was smiling. She spent most of her time petting Whiskers and playing with all the cats. A couple of times when she wasn’t looking, Whiskers got on the window ready to escape until she grabbed him. She would say, “You silly cat. No escaping on my watch!” She also made a couple of other furry friends like Kippy and Snapcat. Kippy’s a beautiful, white Persian cat, and Snapcat is a handsome, brown American Bobtail.

Chapter 4: The Real Problem

It was Friday, the fifth day of volunteering for Samantha. She was heading downstairs for breakfast before she left to go volunteer. Usually her mom was in the kitchen all ready to go, but when Samantha entered the kitchen, her mom wasn’t there. “Mom,” Samantha called out, “we’re going to be late. It’s already seven-fifty-six.”

“I know,” her mom said. “We’re not going. You’re obviously allergic to cats, and there’s no point in going if you’ll just sneeze and rub your eyes.”

“But I want to go,” Samantha whined. Her mom didn’t listen. Samantha heard her mom call the shelter to tell them that she wouldn’t be coming.

Since it was summer, Samantha asked her mom if she could go to the park. Her mom said it was fine with her, so Samantha grabbed a book to read and took off. She rode her bike there and locked it on the rack. Then she went to the swings, slid down the slide, and finally, went to the monkey bars. She hung out there reading her book, but while she was reading, her eyes started to feel itchy, and she started to sneeze. She looked around, but there were no cats. She decided to bike back to her house to take some Benadryl. When she got home, she asked her mom for Benadryl. Her mom asked why she needed it, so Samantha told her that at the park her eyes started to get itchy. She also said that she looked around, but there were no cats. Samantha had some Benadryl and went to her room to play until dinner.

The next day, Samantha asked her mom what they were going to do today. Her mom said they were going to have a picnic on a hill in the park. Then her mom said to go get Jillian and Bethany because she had the food ready. “Jillian, Bethany, time for our picnic,” Samantha yelled up the stairs.

“Yay!” Jillian and Bethany both exclaimed. Jillian and Bethany came down to the kitchen, and they all took off walking to the hill. When they got to the hill, they climbed it and sat down on the top.

“It’s so beautiful up here,” Samantha said, “and so quiet.” They got to work setting up the blanket and the food. Samantha suggested collecting some wildflowers to take home, and her mom and sisters agreed. Samantha rolled down the hill, and when she got to the bottom, she walked over to a patch of roses. She picked two of them, smelled them, and sneezed. She looked around but saw no cats—just the flowers, the grass, and the hill. She decided to ignore the sneeze. Along with the roses, she also picked daisies, lavender, petunias, long grasses, and tulips. Samantha smelled everything, and she noticed after smelling a flower or some grass, she would sneeze, yet there were no cats around. Samantha was finished getting her flowers and grass, so she climbed up the hill. When she got to the top of the hill, she handed the flowers to her mom. Her mom said that once they had the food out of the thermos, she could put the flowers in it. Later when they were eating, Samantha told her mom that when she smelled the flowers, she would sneeze, but there weren’t any cats around.

“Hmm,” her mom said, “I wonder why.”

“I know,” Samantha’s younger sister, Jillian, said. “Me and Befany learned about bees in school. Dey make pollen, and it makes people sneezy!”

“You’re so right!” Samantha exclaimed. Samantha’s mom said that it hadn’t even crossed her mind once that Samantha might be allergic to pollen. Then Samantha asked her mom if this meant she could volunteer again at Animal City. What her mom said put a smile on Samantha’s face.

Chapter 5: Back to Routine Cat

The next day Samantha woke up and got ready for volunteering at the animal shelter. She was even more excited than usual because now she knew it wasn’t the cats she was allergic to; it was most likely the flowers at the front desk. She was so happy she would get to see Whiskers after the time she spent at home. Her mom could tell right away that Samantha was excited when she came to the table for breakfast. “Mom, can I have something small like a piece of bread or something?” Samantha asked. “I don’t want to be late for volunteering.” Then Samantha tried the same thing she had tried on her first day of volunteering. She said, “Mom, can we leave a bit early?”