I shared about my dog Payton, now deceased, back a couple of months ago on National Dog Day. At that time I promised to celebrate National Cat Day when it rolled around. Today is that day! I love dogs and cats. After my old dog and even older cat passed away a few years ago, I refrained from adopting more pets. I’m busy, I told myself and they require a lot of care. I hate losing them. It seemed better not to have a pet. But life intervened, bringing me a little family of cats that needed me. I’m a cat owner, or as my family likes to tease, a crazy cat lady. Although I don’t think owning four cats qualifies me for that title!
This one is Shy Boy, one of the litter of three that I adopted when their mother brought them to me. (Momba has since moved on, after being spayed. Having her offspring around didn’t appeal to her.) Shy and his sisters will be three years old next June. He is affectionate, and loves to curl up on an empty lap. He’s very vocal, “talking” back when spoken to.
Shy Boy’s tail is so long and heavy that it curls over his back. He can’t hold it upright. I joke that he has lemur DNA, as his tail is almost prehensile. Shy is still timid around strangers, but he allows the neighbor to pet him and doesn’t run and hide as much when family visits. Shy continues to have a wide eyed look that is very endearing. If I’m sitting in the garden, he’s most likely to be on my lap.
Angel is a beautiful gray cat with very dense fur. She has a thick undercoat that causes her to be sensitive to hot weather. Although she loves being outside, and prefers to lounge on the front porch during the day, I bring her indoors during the hottest summer days. Angel is the quietest of the cats, very rarely making any sound at all. If she meows it’s because she wants something or her feeling are hurt.
She’s a cuddler too and she’s snoozing on my lap now as I work on my blog. She is also the most social of the cats and just wants everyone to get along. She and Marco will snuggle together for a nap. While Shy seems to be part lemur, Angel acts like she has dog DNA. She’s the only cat among my four that begs for people food. She will eat anything. And like a dog, she will lick my hand. When she sleeps, she tends to lay on her back or end up in strange contortions.
Rilynn is very petite, and very much her own girl. Although the smallest, she’s the scrappiest and the most likely to go off on her own for the day. She doesn’t like to snuggle with the other cats although occasionally I’ll find her lying near big brother Shy. She very rarely sits on my lap but she will follow me around, mewing for attention, and enjoys having her ears scratched.
This little girl has the dreamiest eyes, that always seem to be slightly unfocused. I wonder sometimes if she sees well. As I approach her, her head bobbles about as if she’s trying to get a visual fix. Or she’s just odd. Either way, I adore her. Rilynn likes to find strange places to sleep…on a shelf, beneath a blanket or in a box. Her current fave napping spot is curled within the wreath I just removed from the front door. I’ve postponed packing it away because of her!
Last is the youngest cat, Marco, born to Momba in a second litter. He will be two years old in March. Although the baby of the family, he’s the heaviest, because he never hesitates to eat again with a brother or sister, even if he just ate. His life motto seems to be, “Never do anything alone.” He likes to be with the other cats or with people. Marco prefers to be touching someone, anyone else. He is the cat most likely to sleep with me at night, with one paw resting on my hand, or touching my side.
As big as he is, he still thinks he’s the baby brother. His meows sound like the cries of a six week old kitten. He’s fooled me more than once into thinking there was a kitten under the porch, crying. Then out he jumps. Marco is very bright. When he was younger, I most often said his name LOUDLY, followed by…”stop that” as he teased his siblings. If I snapped my fingers and pointed to the ottoman in the living room, he would jump up and sit there, in time out. I don’t have to scold him any more, as he’s settled down considerably. But he still puts himself in time out occasionally.
These are my fur babies. I didn’t want pets but that didn’t matter. Into my life they have come and I love and appreciate each of them. They bring me joy and make me laugh, keep me company as I work in the garden and love me unconditionally.
Kristin Cast observed, “Cats choose us; we don’t own them.” I have to agree. Cats are too independent to be owned, and I like that about them. I’m grateful that Shy Boy, Angel, Rilynn and Marco have chosen me. And that their mama chose me initially, to care for them. I am honored.