A group of Sussex students have accidentally started a cat sanctuary in their home

For legal reasons, this is all fictional. Tenancy agreement clearly states no pets.

Most students know the intense longing felt when they gaze at old pictures of their pets from home. Walks in the park with your dog and cuddles in bed with your cat seem like a distant memory, only made worse by the banning of pets from your house by your landlord. How rude.

However, one group of Sussex students recently became very lucky when they had some welcome additions to their home in the form of a group of cats. The Sussex Tab spoke to this household to find out how it all came about.

Who was the first feline arrival?

It all started early one August morning. Three girls in their gloomy, mould-ridden kitchen were approached by a tabby cat, having naught to offer but water, and so began a blossoming friendship.

“The cat was christened, Shy, because she was very timid and absolutely adorable demeanour,” Emily, the original cat mother confirmed.

Shy didn’t mind the sticky kitchen floors.

It was another few weeks before the fourth housemate arrived in Brighton but by that time, the house had regular visits from Shy and another cat whom they named Diva.

“We called her Diva because she proved herself to be quite temperamental. We suffered wounds from which we still bare the scars, but we knew even from the beginning that we would persevere,” Bex, another housemate, told the The Sussex Tab.

Diva stares menacingly at the egg in egg cup (shot glass).

How did you find stepping up to the challenge?

“I met Diva the day after I arrived. Two of my housemates walked through the front door and Diva followed them, running straight up the stairs and into my bedroom. I considered it a welcome and a blessing.”

Since that day, Diva has become increasingly boisterous with each visit. Daisy, pictured below, informed The Sussex Tab about her antics.

“She now stands daily on our kitchen windowsill, crying at us, until we let her in. She also now ventures all over our house and rolls on our carpet looking suspiciously under the door of our storage cupboard and honestly, if Diva knows something about mice that we do not, she can just keep it to herself.”

A landmark moment, Diva broaches the lap.

Were there any more cat appearances after Diva?

“Shy acquired a brother along the way whom we have decided should be known as Chonk. He looks exactly like Shy but bigger and less friendly,” Bex told The Sussex Tab.

“But the most exciting update is one of our more recent arrivals. The week just before Halloween, a tiny black cat invited herself into our kitchen late in the evening and just sat with us after dinner. She has been named Spirit for reasons concerning the fact that she is clearly our spirit guide, attracted to our clearly haunted house, but that’s a whole other story.”

The Halloween cat in question.

Shan then followed up:

“Our most recent visit, but unfortunately most fleeting and brief, was a surprisingly friendly and approachable striped cat who had clearly just had kittens. We loved her deeply for the approximate four minutes she was with us, but she has never returned, and we never saw any kittens.” Just one more kick in the teeth during coronavirus.

How has motherhood changed your daily life?

“Diva and Shy are our most frequent visitors. We usually see each of them at least once a day when they heckle us for food, but the others come and go,” Emily added.  “All of these cat visitors have resulted in us adding cat treats to our weekly shopping lists and creating homemade cat toys from twigs and wool. We’ve even made serious considerations about purchasing a cat grass plant for our garden in order to attract yet more cats as the second lockdown looms ahead and we search fruitlessly for joy.”

Accidentally starting a cat sanctuary was not the plan that any of these Sussex students had for this year but upon speaking to The Sussex Tab, none of them seem to be mad about it.

Diva, Shy and Spirit were approached for a comment, but all declined.