Archive for Cats and Dogs

Sorry Thomas Wolfe…

You can go home again.

You just can’t bring the cat.

So, today we moved back to Gainesville, my home town.  I’ve moved away and back once before when I went to college, joined the army, and saw the world.  After seeing the world, I learned Gainesville wasn’t all that bad.

But I got my degree and left again.  Not really for good, since Charlie always had a job here.  But enough so I can say I’ve come home again.  We closed on a house last Thursday but today is our official move in day.  We’ll be spending our first night here tonight.  We moved the animals today too–Linus the nervous dog with Charlie and Ike the big old cat with me.  Linus made the trip surprisingly well, thanks to a quarter of a doggie tranquilizer, a cozy crate, and some preliminary training in the car with lots of treats.

At first, it looked like Ike did just as well.  He’s always been pretty unflappable.  With as much as Linus barks, Ike has learned to ignore commotion around him.  He was a bit skittish in his carrier at first, but mellow enough so I could open the door and pet him.  He finally decided to move to the back and get a nap for the rest of the drive.

But Ike may be too unflappable.  We got to the house, I set up a litter box and then brought the carrier in and opened its door.  And Ike stayed in the carrier.  I figured he’d come out when he was ready, so did some more unpacking.  While Ike stayed in the carrier.  We even brought his cat condo, so he’d have something familiar here.  And because he’s so good about scratching it instead of the furniture.  Still, Ike didn’t think that the condo was worth coming out of the carrier for.  So I removed the carrier door and let him have some time to figure it out.  Linus would go into the carrier to visit and Ike did come out a couple of times, looked around, realized he didn’t know the place, and went back in to sit down, stare out, and not be flapped.

I finally carried him to the condo, where he looked around for a bit, meandered to a corner to hide in, and, after a few minutes, went back to the carrier.  But he decided to stop in his litter box first.  That was 2 hours ago and he’s still in the litter box. I even sat and knit with him for a while and even yarn wasn’t enough to entice him.

I finally realized that he hasn’t lived any place but “his” house in Macon for the last 4 years.  He hasn’t even been out of there for more than a year.  So I guess we can give him a day or two to realize there can be other places in the world and he can live there.

After all, he’s not hte one coming home again.


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Belated Pictures

So, we had kittens and they spent just a day with us (I still have no idea where they came from or where they went to).  But I did get pictures and now that I’ve figured out how to log into this blog again, I’ll try in vain to catch up.

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A bit of magic in the morning

So, I woke up, early (still getting over the effects of travel to Europe and realizing I’ll be getting up early for the next 2 weeks, so why bother sleeping late) and wandered to the living room, passing the glass doors to the back porch.

And the porch was full of kittens.

Well, not actually full. There was still a grill and lawn chairs and such, but there were actually 4 kittens playing on the porch. And since they were healthy kittens, they filled the porch, bouncing and climbing and killing acorns and such.

But I was awake enough to realize that, as adorable as they may be, kittens don’t really belong on the back porch.

Ike was with me and shared my kitten consternation. He just crouched and stared at them. And, since neither of us knew what to make of a porch full of kittens, we decided to bring Charlie into the mix. He’s been able to sleep later and is heading for the west coast today, where he’ll sleep later still. But he made the mistake of muttering something as I was leaving bed, so I figured he was awake.

And there were kittens on the back porch.

Sure enough, this wasn’t some sort of strange hallucination. Charlie agreed, once he woke up enough, that there were in fact kittens on the back porch.

So, the three of us watched the kittens and mama cat (who had had enough of the kittens to spend the time on the porch railing, above the fray). Three of the kittens were colored like their mother,
mostly white with a few large black or gray patches. But one was the spitting image of Ike. I really had to wonder if he had figured out a way to get out of the house to go catting around. (But our vet is too good; I’m sure it wasn’t Ike’s progeny.)

Random kittens on the back porch are a magical way to start the day. In fact, This American Life reported on the attempts to create a tv channel of puppies, because watching puppies is so good for the soul.

But, after a while, you start to wonder how the kittens got there and are they abandoned and what do we do with them and were they born in the yard and what are kittens doing on the back porch?  The mother didn’t look familiar so we thought maybe the family had gotten dumped, but they seemed exceptionally healthy and happy.  After a while, they proved to us they could slip through the barricade that we put in to keep Linus on the porch and disappeared.

And that’s how the day started out.  With a bit of magic in the morning.

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