Cats   1 comment

Which of all the cats I have known well is my favorite?  They are all so different; with each there is a story, and it is understandable that we know each cat differently and have preferences.

Moter: his name was misspelled because I stuck to my error with 8-year-old determination not to admit a fault.  He was my first cat, the one I begged for months to get.  When my dad and I went to “interview” him, he strolled right to us, purring so loudly, and won my heart right away.  He was a large marmalade tom who tolerated two small children very well.  He went outside every night and was on the porch railing each morning to get our attention outside the window where we ate breakfast.  We couldn’t hear him meow because it was double pained glass.  But we could see him.  And we could sure hear him purring.  Never had a louder cat.  Hence the name.

I lost him when we moved from Alaska to Montana, because Mom and Dad didn’t think we could move a pet that far.  After we moved, he ran away from the people who had taken him, and I don’t think they ever found him.  Heartbreaking.  I don’t think my parents chose to not move a pet again.

Later, my brother chose a kitten who turned out be even bigger and lovelier than Moter as far as looks.  Max was darling, and grew up pleasingly large with dark tabby markings and huge green eyes.  People always commented, “what a beautiful cat.”

Of course he wasn’t mine the way Hobbes was.  I picked her out after I married and my husband already had a cat.  I wanted one of my own, a kitten.  I had no idea how hard it would be to find a kitten in October.  Finally we called someone who still had a kitten left from the newspaper ad they had placed.  We rushed out to see it.  I sat down, she got in my lap, and started playing with the cord of my hood.  I fell in love that moment.  And it was a good thing, because Hobbes was a nut case.  She peed in corners, cried at the wrong times, ate rubber bands and nursed on her surrogate sister, who, as far as we know, never gave her any actual milk.  She needed me because nobody else would have put up with her.

I named her after the Hobbes in Calvin and Hobbes, as she was another stripey cat and I loved that comic strip.  Only later did I learn she was a female.  She had an attention to detail that did help us at times.  She noticed a shorting outlet in our apartment and stared at the spark she saw, making a squeaky noise.  I never would have noticed that if she hadn’t shown it to us.

Jigs was my husband’s cat, the best-natured I’ve ever had in her own “you may worship me now” way.  Moter was more personable, I think, but Jigs had a certain charm, after she got over my getting in her space.  I think she thought she was there first.  She used to chew my sandals when I would go to my then fiancée’s apartment.  But after he and I were married, she warmed up.  She was the only cat I’ve ever known who would approach a crying person, meowing, and get in the person’s lap and look in her face to ascertain the problem and what she could do to help her feel better.  And if you won her favor, you would receive a “puh,” which is a gentle pat on the nose with a velvet paw.

Annie found me one summer day.  She was my only long hair, a kitten who had been abandoned by the side of the country road we lived on when my oldest son was young.  I brought her home, cleaned her up, took her to the vet, and was only going to keep her until I could find someone who wanted her.  But she stuck to us.  She played with my two-year old.  When someone actually said she’d take her, I suddenly changed my mind.

For years I didn’t have an inside cat, due to dealing with kids and not wanting to deal with fleas.

But, I had given birth to three children and at least one was bound to inherit the cat gene I had.  (You can have either the cat or dog gene.)  Despite my husband’s being a dog person, guess which animal the kids adore?

So, my then 9-year-old daughter was begging me for a cat.  For months.

Finally, I gave in and let her pick an adult cat from the pound for her birthday.  This cat she named Terry, after her aunt’s cat Carrie.

Terry is another beautiful dark-haired tabby cat and her role was to prove to me that I could have an indoor cat again, that a cat could be good in every way.  She used the litter box only.  She drank from her water bowl.  She didn’t claw or scratch us.  She used her scratching post.  She sat on laps.  She is the best cat I’ve ever had, as far as behavior goes.

So she inspired me to get another cat.  Of course!  I picked out a kitten because I hadn’t had that pleasure in 20 plus years.  I brought home a smoke grey male kitten, who promptly grew up to teach her all his bad tricks (like opening doors), so I could have two bad cats.  However, since I picked him out all by myself, I fell in love with him, and Boris has been weaseling his way into hearts ever since he gaily bounced along behind the kids the first day I brought him home.  No need for this kitten to be put in a cozy box in a small space in order to slowly adjust to his new surroundings.  He was scampering to and fro and purring from the minute he came in our door, ears pricked on his too-big head, to see where he was.

He’s my baby now, even though he is almost three in people years and I guess in his twenties in cat years.  He loves to sit on my lap and purr first thing in the morning.  That would be when I haven’t even made it off the toilet.  And he comes to cuddle in the bed some nights, usually the ones when I could use a purring furry weight next to me.  He’s a pill sometimes, but I’m awfully fond of him.

I think that of the cats I have known, the ones I chose myself were my favorites.  Or maybe they chose me?

Posted February 5, 2015 by swanatbagend in cats

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One response to “Cats

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  1. Wonderful read, Jenny! Have you ever read the story of Dewey, the library cat? Cat stories are the best 🙂 We are cat people but I am not to the point of welcoming a full-time house cat. We have a visiting neighbor cat that comes in and sleeps here sometimes. Love him.

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