That Cat Can’t Stay is on my list of fun rhyming read-alouds for elementary students. I love sharing this title, but never stopped to think about it in context of rescue animals until I started collecting books about rescues and helping find homes for animals.
Flashlight Press had sent out a newsletter reminding us that many families give puppies and kittens for Christmas gifts, but the thrill wanes and the animals end up in shelters. My beloved Lucy girl from a shelter had a note on her that “the kids don’t want her no more.” It broke our hearts. Fifteen years later we still love our Lucy and laugh when she stands outside wondering which direction is in. Fortunately my son’s German Shepherd Gabby goes out to herd her back in the house while she snaps and argues the entire time. Dogs and cats are lifetime commitments, not just spur of the moment gifts.
The publisher states: “That Cat Can’t Stay is a wacky story about a family with a pet-adoption dilemma. Mom keeps bringing home stray cats, while Dad comes up with ridiculous reasons why each one can’t stay. Dad grudgingly gives in – 5 times! – but finally finds his perfect pet at the end.”
One of the best parts of this book is finding all the cat-aspects in the illustrations. I was amazed to read snippets from so many reviews and blogs here http://www.flashlightpress.com/That_Cat_Cant_Stay.html I hope you enjoy them as much as I did. When my new Promethean board is set up, I’ll be using the sneak peak in pdf form from the publisher to share with my students.
Have you used this title for conflict resolution? Mom always seems to get her way despite Dad’s protests and complaints. Each time she brings home a stray needy cat, she acknowledges Dad’s concerns, states what could happen to the cat if they don’t take it in, and then waits for Dad to give-in. Each time he thinks its temporary, but those cats gather around him just like real cats will rub against people who hate cats (Is it to irritate them?). Those cats seem to be winning dad over, but he does take action in the end to show his preferences.
I’ve paired That Cat Can’t Stay with the poem Cat! by Eleanor Farjeon before. Look for the blog posts on rescue animals coming this year. There are some wonderful titles and I promise to give you tear-jerker alerts when necessary.