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Tahiti – In Memory


TWS was contacted by a Bengal rescue group in Colorado, where a large breeder was closing down and needed to place the cats that were not adoptable. They had several hybrid F3 Bengals that were unable to be socialized for adoption.

She was born in 2004 and came to TWS in 2006 to spend life in her forever home.

Tahiti is called melanistic in reference to the dark pigmentation of her skin.  Any black cat can be called melanistic and actually this genetic mutation can happen to any number of animals such as leopards and jaguars.

She is a very shy small cat, but is intrigued by the enrichment the caretakers put out.  She can be found watching the pool fill up with water or playing with a new paper bag in the habitat.


In Memory ~ June 2019

So little, but oh so mighty

This week, we had to say good-bye to our tiny – but mighty – little black Bengal cat, Tahiti. After a lifetime of chronic health issues and a mass growing in her throat, she lost her courageous fight.

Weighing in at only 6 lbs. and having lost all of her teeth from dental disease, it would’ve been easy to underestimate her. Tahiti may have been small and sleek, but her larger than life meow is what really brought out her strong spirit.  She loved chatting back in forth with her sister Willow, especially when they could see birds perched along the tree line.

Arriving with a dozen other Bengal Cats from a closed breeding cattery, she and her family found peace here at the Sanctuary.  She was the last survivor of her original family, but she definitely found kinship with her bungalow mates Tiger and Max.

She also loved scents and often would rub on volunteers’ and caretakers’ shirts or hats they left on the ground for her to play with. She loved the grass and basking in the sun. But also liked to spend evenings curled up in a cat condo or blanket.

To her former breeder, she may not have been worth a lot of value. She was melanistic, giving her a black coat.  But to us, she was worth her weight in gold – our tiny leopard and just as special and spirited as Shadow or Shazam.

Everyone grew so close to Miss Tahiti because, due to her chronic issues the past 14 years, she needed ongoing vet exams, daily medication. With her congestion and lack of teeth, it could take a lot of patience to wait for her to finish an entire meal, while protecting it from her habitat mates.  But to her caregivers, this was no burden.  It was a privilege and very special time with our special girl.

Tahiti, you get to join your family once again. As we shed our tears, I know they are happy to see you.  We will see you one day again, too.  Until then, stray strong – stay mighty.  You are free now. We love you so much.