Joey's Feline Friends

Miss Nalu (top), Sir Max, and the one and only; Harley.

 In Loving Memory ofHarley 

​"Until one has loved an animal,

a part of one's soul remains 

unawakened."    - Anatole France​

A privately owned, not-for-profit, no-kill animal shelter.

Please join Bob Ristelhueber in his generous MATCHING FUNDS DRIVE in honor and tribute to Harley's life. Click here to learn more.

Bob Ristelhueber


Back in 2008, when I was living in Honolulu and volunteering at the Hawaiian Humane Society, a fellow volunteer told me about this little orange tabby cat that had been brought to the shelter with a badly burned tail. Rather than euthanize the poor kitty, the vets were so taken with his sweet personality that they decided to try to save his life. After two surgeries to amputate his tail, he was on the mend and would soon be available for adoption.

Needless to say, as soon as I met the cat I wanted to take him home. He had the loudest purr you ever heard (the other volunteer named him Harley after the noisy motorcycle) and despite his travails was sweet and playful. The vets estimated Harley was about 7 months old, just out of kittenhood.

Doug and I adopted Harley in October 2008. There was the usual adjustment as he got to know our other two cats, Nalu and Max. As the queen bee, Nalu wasn't pleased to have this outsider intrude on her realm, but she eventually learned to tolerate him. Max warmed up to Harley much more, and they soon became buddies (although Harley considered himself the alpha cat and bossed Max around quite often). Thus began our 8-year journey with one of the more remarkable kitties I've ever known.

September 2, 2016​​

Today is a very sad for Doug and I. Our wonderful cat Harley passed away suddenly. I came back from visiting the SPCA shelter today and found him on the bed, curled up in his favorite blanket. He had seemed perfectly healthy today. He was only about 8 years old. Harley was always full of energy and spirit, playful but also very affectionate and loving. A couple years ago a vet had detected a heart murmur, but it later seemed to disappear. He was running around like always yesterday. So I guess I should be grateful he didn't suffer. He had a really good life with us, full of affection and play. He had two cat friends, Max and Nalu, with us. We'll always remember our sweet Harley. Doug took this picture of Harley in April, curled up in my arm..