I think it must be Caturday on Monday. Mayzie has a hilarious and adorable post up about her bonding process with her other brudder, Ripley who is a pirate cat, I believe. Meantime, I've been working on a couple of posts about my sister and brother cats here. I have to admit I've given them short shrift in this space. There's a reason for that. They don't really like me. They might feel they have their reasons, but they're rooted in prejudice and stereotyping. I have certainly been nothing but pleasant to them. Pleasant and a little careful. Still, we're all family now, and they don't really ever hiss at me anymore, so I guess they are entitled to be featured on my blog from time to time. Tonight is all about Simone, who is the senior pet in the house, both in age and years on the job. She is, however, not the boss of me. Let's keep that straight.
Most of the four leggers (and a few of the two leggers, as well) who have lived in this house have been rescue animals of one sort or another. No one here can recall ever going to a store or a breeder and buying a pet. Even taking the step of going out to a rescue organization and formally adopting, as in my case, was an exception. Blog Mom says that if she ever feels a cat shortage coming on she can just leave the door open for a while and a new cat will appear. Simone, however, was a rescue cat only in her own mind. Most of her story took place before my time here. Some of it even took place before I was ever born. Simone is about 12 years old now.
Her first home was with another branch of the family and if things had worked out differently she'd have been my kitty cousin or something like that. She went to live with her first humans as a small kitten, at a time when they were in an apartment where it was impractical for them to have a dog. They adopted a second cat after her and the two of them got on just fine and all was well because they didn't know a thing about their other sister.
The other sister was Rosie. Rosie was living with Blog Mom and Daddy, temporarily (3 years) until such time as it was once again possible for her to live with her own humans. That day finally came and boy was Simone suprised. And pissed off. The other kitty was more able to roll with the punches, but Simone got all stressed out. Part of the problem was that, being an English Bulldog, Rosie wasn't easily discouraged from things. So if Simone didn't want to get acquainted, Rosie wasn't going to take a hint. She was also almost impervious to pain, so the fact that Simone had all her claws didn't even slow her down. Not that she was real fast anyway. By the time Rosie went to live with Simone she was pretty old for a bulldog and it wasn't all that long before she went to the Rainbow Bridge. Rosie, I'm told, was very sweet and had not a mean bone in her whole body and everyone was very sad to lose her. Except for Simone, who was doing the happy dance, practically on poor Rosie's grave. It was in poor taste is what it was. It also indicated a certain lack of imagination because apparently what happened next was something Simone never thought of. What happened next was Roxie:
Yes, there was a new arrival at Simone's place and it was a bouncing baby bulldog. And when they said bouncing, they meant it. I supposed Simone would have given a few important teeth to have old Rosie back after a few months of Roxie. The other kitty continued go with the flow while seeking and finding higher and higher ground. Simone lost a few small patches of fur due to stress. Finally, fate intervened in the guise of yet another housing dilemma for Simone's humans. This one brought the entire menagerie, humans included, to stay here at this house for a little while. (5 years). When that happened, Simone's heretofore tolerant sister kitty finally found an animal so frightening and monstrous that she simply could not co-exist with him. Who was this beast, you ask?
It was Stevie Ray Cat, beloved by all my humans and a buddy of Daddy in pawticular. My human brother found Stevie as a tiny kitten, seeking refuge in our garage. Eventually Daddy coaxed him into moving into the house and he and Daddy hung out together for the rest of Stevie's life, which was about 14 years. Stevie was still here when I moved in. In fact, it was partly because of Stevie that I got chosen instead of the younger Shar Pei that the Moms met when they got me. Stevie had cancer and the vet said he only had a few more months and they wanted to be sure that the new dog would not be a trouble to him. I didn't disappoint. If he'd lived, I'm pretty sure we would have been friends. He didn't seem to mind dogs, or much of anything. They said he was always that way. If a dog or other cat got up in his face (which I never would, by the way) he'd just go all Zen and stare back, but in a peaceful, non-confrontational sort of way. He didn't run away and he didn't fight or get mad either. And it usually worked, but not with Simone's sis. It just got worse and worse and it got so Stevie couldn't even walk into his own kitchen to have dinner without being attacked by psycho cat. To make matters worse from angry kitty's point of view, Simone thought Stevie was great. They hit it off extremely well.
Well, Daddy and Blog Mom couldn't see Stevie being persecuted in his own home and eventually a decision was made to separate the animals. Simone saw her big chance and without much of a backwards glance, chose to consider herself a member of Stevie's family group rather than the one she'd arrived with. And that's the way it stayed. For years, Simone and Stevie hung out together and developed a routine. They'd play really early in the morning, running around like wildcats. That was all Simone's idea. Stevie had never been much for playing, even as a kitten, perhaps due to his traumatic start in life. But Simone brought out his inner kitten in the wee hours of the morning and then they napped and hung around thinking kitty thoughts for the rest of the day, very happily. Oh, and Simone's bare spots filled in very nicely.
Coming soon: Even Simone has to make adjustments.