2.5 Cat Home In Colorado
Please call me Cali. I'm a 21 year old female with 2.5 cats. Two point five you ask? Well.... I have two cats that almost everyone in the world would call cats and I have a cat-in-training. Most people would call it a dog because it barks and walks on a leash. I stick with "cat-in-training".
Please be prepared for a very long post. Sorry about that... At least you'll basically know my trio inside and out.
My oldest cat is a calico named Hop-Along-Cassidy, but she doesn't know that. She answers to Cassie (and a special meow that mimics a mother cat trying to locate a lost kitten). She is almost three I think. Boy time goes by. I adopted her from a shelter that had her housed at Petsmart. She was roughly six months at the time. She's a special one all right. She was born with a partial hind limb that end with paw pads but a singular "toe". Claws are not present. Also, on her other hind foot, one toes is missing the last digit/knuckle. It hasn't slowed her down any. She was the worst kitten I ever had in respects to playing. She never stopped. She still hasn't.
My second cat is Spook, or Spookie. She lives up to her name without a doubt. She's roughly six months. I acquired her when she was roughly 4 weeks old. I happened to be-bop into a local grooming place to ask about prices for a cut for my dog. One of the groomers was showing a customer a little black kitten. I happened to be listening. According to the groomer, this roughly 2-week old kitten was found by her in a trash can. She took the little ball of fur to the vet and was just trying to get the kitten to weaning point. The kitten was a sweet, scared, pathetic looking critter. I had recently put down my 14 year old cat, but was looking for a new cat because my Cassie was driving me nuts. She missed having a playmate and wanted to substitute me instead. I couldn't handle it. So, I asked about the kitten. Two weeks later, she was weaned and approved to come home with me.
The first day I had her, I placed her in my bedroom with a box, some toys, food, water, and a custom made litter box. She hardly moved and I slept on the couch to give her quiet. The next day, I decided it was time to introduce myself, and the dog unavoidably. She was a stone in my hand. I sat with her on my lap trying to think of a name for the little thing. I talked quietly and proposed a few names. Cassie came along about then and scared the kitten. Little kitty jumped about a foot into the air in fright and I said exactly "I guess you're a bit of a spook, aren't you?" I will swear until the day I pass that it was exactly after I said this that my new kitten jumped out of my lap and approached Cassie. They haven't stopped harassing each other since. Spookie picked her name. And she lives up to it.
I spend as much time as I can with her, but she bolts like a feral when I walk around. She disappears like a puff of smoke when someone comes to the door. She climbs the ceiling when a loud noise occurs. And yet, she is every loving. She licks and paws, purrs and love-bites.
She also recently experienced a trauma. Upon moving back into my old apartment, one of my sisters came over to help me organize a little. She opened a window without my permission or knowledge. That night, Spookie kept me up until the sun rose. I was sleeping on the couch because my bed was full of clothes. After she stopped bugging me, I drifted to sleep. When I woke, I realized I couldn't find Spookie. Food didn't attract her. I then noticed that the window was open and I just knew. You know how you just know? That's where I was. Of course, I was heart-broken because I doubted I would ever see my semi-feral kitten again. She wouldn't come when called and the window she escaped from led to a yard with two pit bull mixes.
Searching outside where I thought I could find her led to no results. I figured she was long gone. I did look through the window to check for a body. I didn't see any. I resigned myself to wait. I looked up how to locate a missing cat and decided at about 9:30pm that night to take a flashlight and attempt to find her. I very intelligently decided to start where I knew she escaped. Miracle upon miracle, I looked down and saw her next to the tree by the window. I also saw that the two pit mixes had noticed me and then noticed her. She didn't move. Heart pounding, I knew I had to brave the yard to get my Spookie. I have access to the yard, but the dogs like to jump up and try to enter my house. I do not go out into the yard as a general rule. I unlocked the door, stepped out, and started to turn towards Spookie. The dogs barked at me; one approached me and the other sniffed at Spook. She hissed. I told the dogs to behave and let me get my cat. They were very good compared to their usual behavior. I figured out why later.
Fearing that Spookie would dart if I approached, I went as slow as I could. My heart was pounding like a drum the entire time. She looked at me and meowed. I moved faster because I could tell she had no plan on moving. Picking her up, I cradled her against my chest. I praised the dogs on my way back into my house for not eating her or jumping on me. My Spook smelled like she had been swimming in a sewer. I set up an extra dog crate in the living room and placed her in it. It being a Sunday and having no car, I knew I couldn't get her to the vet for another 12 hours if needed. I threw Cassie in the crate as well, hoping that she would help keep Spook calm. Cassie didn't recognize her and was aggressive, so I threw her back out.
Spookie was a mess. Besides smelling, her fur was covered in who-knows-what. She did take to eating and drinking half her weight. Then she paced/limped around the crate and panicked every time I moved out of pawing distance. It was finally settled that she would sleep in the clean litterbox in the crate and I would have my fingers sticking through the bars touching her paw. We slept like that all night. The next morning, I assessed her wounds. No cuts, no open wounds... blood on her paws. I initially thought this was due to broken dewclaws. I could see them and she kept meowing in pain when I tried to investigate. I figured that was the extent of it and thanked whatever sent the miracle for letting her have so few injuries. Now to get her smelling like a cat-like object again. Not one to give cats baths unless it's unavoidable, I was looking for getting scratched and bitten. I felt that in order to control Spook better, I should shower with her. This way, I could hold her against my chest and wash her as quickly as possible. She didn't even fight me and I didn't have to restrain her other than forcing her head away from the water.
Three days later, I realize that my house stinks of infection. Having removed her "crate-only" status, I had to wait until she came to see me on the couch. I then grabbed a paw and saw what I had missed. Her claws were gone. I squeezed them a little and wonderful stench and puss greeted me. One hundred and eighteen dollars later, Spookie was on pain killers and antibiotics. She basically ripped 95% of her nails off and in a few instances, the first digit on a few toes. No wonder the pits stayed away from her. The only thing I can figure is that they came upon her and this 5.5 pound cat gave all she had against 60+ pound dogs. She stayed very needy for about 12 days, until she finally figured out that I pilled her when I fed the cats. Then she got smart. Now she's back to her old ways of avoiding me unless I'm on the couch or the pot (because we all know it's against the laws of nature to close the bathroom door).
My .5 cat is a cocker spaniel/poodle mix named Scrappi. She thinks she's a cat. Eats cat food, jumps on the cat trees, responds to my special meow to call the cats, plays with cat toys..... I keep telling her that if she'd learn to use the litter box and meow, I'd love her forever.