Bob knows a thing or two about how to nurture wonderful and lasting connections. He has always lived in Denver – a community he values and loves so deeply, he’s willing to endure the snow and his neighbors’ “puzzling” fervor for the mountains nearby. Denver is the home Bob shared with the love of his life, Jim, for over 55 years. Together, the couple befriended Goldie, a stray neighborhood cat whom they took in and surrounded with care for 10 years before losing him to kidney cancer last November. Three months later, when Bob and Jim were ready to adopt again, they came to the Dumb Friends League and met Ozzy, an orange tabby in need of warm companionship. And so began another closely-knit, steadfast bond.

It was a chilly February day when Bob and Jim visited the League’s Leslie A. Malone Center in search of a new feline friend. For several weeks before, Jim had been keeping a close eye on the adorable, adoptable cats on our website, regularly sharing his favorites with Bob. When the two first saw Ozzy’s adoption photo, they were immediately drawn to his beautiful golden coat, which sparked fond memories of their beloved Goldie. Upon meeting him in person, they were absolutely smitten.

Ozzy had recently undergone entropion surgery at the League and had temporary sutures over both of his eyes as they healed. Rather than feeling deterred by his condition, Bob and Jim were charmed by his sweet spirit and gentle disposition. They just knew he would be the perfect addition to their family. So, without too much convincing, they opened their hearts to him and never looked back.

As seasoned cat dads, both Bob and Jim knew just how to set Ozzy up for success in his new home – a lovely house, full of history, in Denver’s Capitol Hill neighborhood. Ozzy spent the first few days in the bathroom near the primary bedroom, which came fully equipped with a cactus-shaped scratching post, nutritious food, and a clean litterbox. Eventually, when he was ready to venture out, he made himself right at home on their bed where, according to Bob, he has slept every night since. Ozzy eventually learned to listen for the distinct voices of his loving caregivers and, instead of hiding, he grew accustomed to greeting them at the door for cuddles and pets.

“He’s a friend,” Bob said just a few weeks after they adopted Ozzy. “He’s just wonderful and we’re going to love him for a long time.”

As it turns out, a loyal friend was exactly what Bob needed most. Just four months after bringing Ozzy home, Jim’s health began to decline. He sadly passed away in the summer of 2023. This heartbreaking loss was one felt not only by Bob, but by all who loved Jim – including Ozzy. During a time when many of their newly familiar routines were disrupted and uncertainty loomed, Bob and Ozzy found comfort in one another, with Ozzy being a constant source of solace and joy for Bob in his grief. “He’s really been a lifesaver,” shared Bob.

Today, Bob and Ozzy enjoy each other’s companionship, quietly sharing the “little” things that have steadily become the most meaningful and transformative moments imaginable. The easy and genuine conversations, the reliable affection, the shared memories of Jim’s kindness and warmth. Each helps them feel cared for and supported. As Bob continues to navigate the loss of his great love, he’s also nurturing another once-in-a-lifetime connection – the one he shares with his dear friend, Ozzy. 

Your gift helps us continue to make connections that transform the lives of people and animals. Donate to the Dumb Friends League by visiting today. Through December 31, donations will be matched up to $200,000, meaning you can make twice the impact!