A routine interview with a mouser went wildly viral when Grumpy Cat told a journalist that catnip was boring. You just never know what’s going to come out of a cat’s mouth. So when I scored an interview with Burton—who spent eight years with Folio Weekly editor Georgio Valentino—it seemed like the perfect chance for the two of us, as different as night and day, to have a friendly tête-à-tête.
The man who would be editor adopted Burton as a kitten from a family in Wavre, on the outskirts of Brussels, Belgium. He was the runt, small and delicate—but what he lacked in size, he made up for in sheer elegance. Young Master Burton and his daddy were inseperable. Until the day came when Georgio’s homeland beckoned, and Bertie needed to be re-homed.
Davi: What’s the best prank you’ve ever played on someone?
Burton: I’d wait until my mommy and daddy curled up under the covers, then I’d pounce.
What’s your best feline feature?
My salt-and-pepper fur and Olympian calm give me an air of great gravitas, but when backs are turned, I’m just a playful little fellow.
What artist or band do you plug when someone asks for a recommendation?
In my youth, I learned to appreciate Nico’s Desertshore and anything by Vic Godard. Daddy used to play his own music, too. Oh, those were days!
What have you’ve tried that you’ll never try again?
Pâté au Riesling. Yuck.
What about you will make you famous?
I have a lovely little voice.
If you had the world’s attention for 10 seconds, what would you say?
Tell us about you perfect day.
Sleep, play, cuddle, repeat.
What’s been your most difficult challenge in life so far?
Mommy and Daddy left one day, and they never came back. Luckily, they’d introduced my brother Nacho and me to a loving family of humans and animals in the lush north of Luxembourg. There’s a beautiful garden. It’s cat heaven. But what I’d give to be back on the Avenue Henri Jaspar with my old man!
Whether you call it people saving pets or pets saving people, the story’s the same. Pets make a difference. But adverse events can happen to anyone. You may have the strongest commitment in the world to your pet, and he may show you dedicated love, but if life circumstances change, then re-homing that pet is the most responsible, kindest decision.
Being forced to find a new home for a pet is one of the most difficult situations for pet owners. Not only is the process tough, but the whole situation is super-charged with emotion. Taking the time to find an appropriate home for your pet is the healthiest considerate thing to do.
Burton was given to a new home because his family loved him, not because they didn’t want to love him anymore. Even though he’s a happy cat, frolicking in the greenery at his new digs, he remembers that loving family in dreams and reminisces about the old days—and sighs.