Groucho – the Clinic Cat

Groucho is a handsome black and white domestic short haired kitty that entered our lives in 2015. He was brought in for boarding by his previous owners because he needed to be medicated for allergies and unfortunately, they never picked him up. Fortunately for us, we gained a great companion.

Groucho got his name from his moustache. He is named after Groucho Marx, who was a comedian and actor back in the day. We are always shocked when clients recognize where his name came from. We had to google it, and yes there is a resemblance.

Since Groucho has allergies, he eats a special hydrolyzed protein diet. However, he eats everything that he can get his little paws on. Lunchtime is Groucho’s favourite time of day. As soon as he hears the microwave door open or a lunch bag he runs as fast as he can across the clinic and sits pretty for a treat. Even though we never feed him people food (or at least some of us don’t) he still finds a way to get into it. Groucho can often be found sticking his paw through kennel doors and taking kibble out of patient’s dishes one by one. It, in turn, flares up his allergies, and we need to start all over again with his allergy treatments. One time we even found him nose deep into a delicious OMG Carrot Cake Cupcake.

Groucho spends his days laying in his zebra print bed overseeing the daily activities of the clinic. Sometimes he will parade around the clinic looking for a snack or something to get into. If the clinic is busy and loud, he can also be found lying on top of the folded clean laundry on the kennels. If he feels like the girls don’t have too much to do he will randomly knock business cards from the front counter onto the floor for them to pick up.
Groucho’s favourite water source is the fishbowl. He loves the ‘fishy’ flavour of the water. If the girls are filing away files, he will try and use them as a ladder up to the fishbowl. He is obsessed! He is also obsessed with catnip. We have to hide it on the highest shelves in the clinic.

Some might wonder how Groucho feels about all the dogs that he sees throughout the day. Nothing phases this kitty. Dogs can be barking and growling at him, and he lays on his bed or walks by them nonchalantly. If he knows that he annoys a specific dog and is in a mood, he will walk back in forth of the dog taunting them. This behaviour sends Groucho to time out. Don’t worry he is let back out as soon as the dog leaves!

Groucho loves to dress up for all the holidays. He is so proud of his Halloween costumes and Christmas collars. He parades around the clinic proudly showing off his latest fashions.

Groucho has his fan club in the Grande Prairie community. He is so unique that people stop by the clinic each week to have cuddles with him! He seems to know when people are sad and will get up from his bed and come over for a snuggle.

If anyone told us back in 2015 that this black and white cat was going to be such a large part of our work lives, we wouldn’t believe them. This little cat has a special place in each of our staff’s hearts, and we could not imagine work without him.

Written by: Sarah MacMillan-Smith, Office Manager