t all started with Nimar NimarusRex, the cat that was more than a cat and who proved that my world needed spots to be complete. I will share his story later, but I do have to note that Siada's story starts with losing him. There was a hollow place in my heart (which is still there) and an emptiness in the home, and so we started looking for another companion to fill it.
I love all of my cats, but Savannahs, well, they are special. If you look at any of the sites dedicated to them, or any of the breeders' descriptions of the breed, they note that there are personality traits common to the breed. Included in these are descriptions of "dog-like personalities" and comments about how intelligent and social they can be. These things, as well as the wild looks that come from a Serval ancestor are what draw most people to the breed. Nothing could bring joy to my darkened world the way a spotted kitten could.
So Nimar was our first. He was an F1, which means that his father was an African Serval (making him 50% serval) with a Bengal cat mother. Little Siada is an F3, meaning her great-grand father was a Serval (as well as several other more distant ancestors). She was chosen because of her giant ears, sweet face and the breeder's description of her being a fearless, 100mph kitten (we wanted those crazy Savannah antics).
The breeder is located in Illinois, and we are in the mid-Atlantic area, so the options were to go there and get the kitten or have her flown to us. I will confess that I was terrified about the idea of putting a baby kitten (only 10 weeks old at the time) on a plane alone! We were trying to work out either driving there or having me fly out there to get her, but the breeder soothed my fears about the process.
She only uses certain airlines that have a PetSafe system. There is a special cargo area that is climate controlled for transport. They are even in air conditioned or heated vehicles going from the terminal to the plane! We were told that in 15 years, they had never had an issue (and they ship kittens to new homes frequently), so we decided it would be safe.
I think Friday, June 2 might have been one of the longest days ever. We arrived too early and had to kill time while waiting for our new little kitten. When she finally arrived, we were greeted with a tiny face in a little kitten crate. She was seated on a pile of shredded paper towels and was eagerly peeking out at the world around her. She truly had no fear at all! I thought at the least she would be hesitant (as Nimar was when we got him) about new places, smells, noises and people, but she showed no signs of hesitation.
She chatted at us on the drive home (still in her crate), and took turns looking out the sides at us, and further shredding the paper towels. At home we had a Kitten Quarantine Area set up in the back bathroom (as it is best to let kittens adapt to a new home a bit at a time). When we arrived we opened the door to her prison and let her step into her new world.
I think there might have been all of one second of hesitation, though in reality, I might even have imagined that as after only a minute out of the cage she was happily trying to play with a feather wand and was ready to start exploring her new home.
Savannah Caretaker who is honored to do the job.