I adopted Benji after Melbourne’s second lockdown in 2020. He’s two years old and 6.5 kg of pure chonk. Benji has these magnificent stud jowls that makes him look like a giant teddy bear. His foster mum told me he'd been adopted by a family several months earlier. Unfortunately, they already had another cat who started losing its fur due to Benji’s chaotic energy levels. They were heartbroken to have to return him to the shelter and I’m sure he was heartbroken too. When I adopted him, he was destructive and clearly suffering from abandonment issues, never wanting to be away from me. Being a first-time fur mum, I wasn’t sure if I could handle Benji either. I lost a lot of sleep and furniture, tending to his incessant ‘crying’ and neediness. But he’s come so far since then—I think he knows he’s found his home. During the fourth lockdown, he finally became a lap cat. I can’t imagine my life without him. I hope to adopt another fur baby so Benji can be a big brother and then, our family will be complete.

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