A year ago, I didn’t have any pets. My 22 year old cat, AJ, passed away about five years ago, preceded the year before by my beloved dog, Payton, who also died at home of old age. Today, I have FIVE cats. So how appropriate to celebrate Hug Your Cat Day today, as my first.
I wonder about the person who created this unique holiday, because as anyone knows who has cats, they just looove to be picked up and squeezed tightly….not! They do enjoy a cuddle or snoozing on their human’s lap, when it is their idea. So today, I made sure each of the fur babies received some extra lovin’ and cuddling and had their pic taken to share on the blog.
So here are the recipients of today’s hugs:
This is Momba, formerly known simply as Mama Cat. She started the transition from pet free to multiple cat owner. I’ve shared in previous posts the story of this cat who was abandoned in my neighborhood. I fed her and she eventually brought her three kittens to me to feed as well. When the weather turned very cold last winter, I welcomed the little family into my home. When Momba was satisfied her babies were okay, she left again. Although she showed up frequently to eat, she would not stay around or come inside, until late one night when she desperately wanted in. She disappeared into a closet and by morning had two tiny black kittens. Except I didn’t discover the second kitten until late the next evening, when mama cat’s strange behavior led me to him, nearly dead on the floor, lost behind a curtain. I saved that little guy and he now has a home with a new family. Momba was supposed to be adopted, but her almost owner decided that her work schedule was not the best for adopting a cat at this time, and changed her mind. I respect that decision. I’ve decided to keep her. She will be spayed shortly, so since this was her last litter, she needed a name other than mama cat. Momba is what came to me, so Momba she is. A sweet cat who is adjusting to being cared for and loved, she has a forever home here.
This is Shy Boy, one of the three kittens from last year. He and his sisters had been born outside in the neighborhood, and were not used to human contact. This tom was the shiest of the three. It took weeks before he would timidly allow me to touch him right before he ate on my front porch. He would tip his little head back and watch me with wide eyes, knowing I was going to pet him before he could enjoy his meal. He still has that wide-eyed look, but he has become such a cuddler. He is the sweetest male cat, gentle and even tempered. When his mama had two more little toms, Shy Boy, who has been neutered, was the teenager who stepped up to baby sit when his mom needed a break from the kittens. He carefully watched the babies and patiently allowed them to crawl all over him and tug on his ears and tail. Shy Boy is a creature of habit. He goes outside for a morning stroll and playtime in the back garden and then returns to the house between 10 and 11 in the morning for his nap on my bed.
Rilynn, named by Aubrey, who gave this kitten her own middle name, is the smallest of the three teen cats. With her spotted face, she looks like she fell nose first into a pot of black ink. Although she is the smallest of the three siblings, Rilynn is the most brave. From my first glimpse of her under my front porch, she was unafraid and bounced up to greet me, purring when I petted her. She has dreamy eyes and always looks sleepy. She will cuddle briefly and then she’s on to the next adventure. My office is her preferred napping spot. Her curiosity and lack of fear have made her the explorer. Her brother and sister used to hang back to see what Rilynn did and if she was safe before they would explore with her. She is often a loner, content to go her own way, although she’s always up for some playful interaction on her own terms.
Angel is the different one in the group. She has beautiful gray fur and her eyes and nose are the same smoky color. I feel bad because for quite a while, I thought Angel was a boy! Her angular face and no nonsense attitude, plus the fact that she and Shy Boy always hung out together made me think they were brothers. I saved myself embarrassment BEFORE I took the three to be spayed and neutered by figuring it out before hand. Angel is very vocal and was the slowest to accept her new baby brothers. She has become my girl. She is the one most often curled up on my lap. She dislikes my laptop computer and doesn’t care that it is already on my lap. She finds a way to curl up with me anyway. Angel has a fascination with rocks and likes to find one and bat it around. While both her brother and sister have caught a baby rabbit (that was released after being captured), Angel proudly brought a piece of Styrofoam to Greg and me one night while we were working in the backyard. She was making her “Look what I did” meow, obviously happy with her “capture”.
And this is the baby in the family, little Marco, formerly called Grabfoot by me. He likes to use his left front paw to swat at everything and grab at passing feet or legs. His brother left to go to another home, but no one opted to adopt this little guy, so I decided to keep him as well. Aubrey gave him a proper name. He is 10 weeks old, playful, adventurous and easy going. He adores his older brother, Shy Boy. They play together and often sleep curled up together. Although Angel was slow to accept him, Marco prefers her next after Shy Boy.
Each of these cats has brought joy into my life. I am happy to hug on them today, and every day. And if one does not have a cat to hug on this special day, then June is also National Adopt a Cat Month. There are many, many kittens and cats available at pet shelters, waiting for a forever home and someone to love them. Please consider one of them, and have your furry babies spayed or neutered! And, share a picture or story of your huggable cat with me!