We used to have three cats, Mickey, Ashie and Molly, all of whom spun a line to Sue and adopted her rather than the other way round. Unfortunately, after quite a long time as the real power in our house, all three died about a year ago in a fairly short space of time. One after a road accident and the other two of old age. Sue and I were very upset and I couldn’t imagine that any other cat could ever replace them in Sue’s affections.
Now I’m not brave enough to make any claims about Sue’s fickleness, but on the same day as the funeral of the last of the original trio, Misty arrived at our house with Sue and for a short while was going to be our only cat.
(Is “herd” correct as a collective name for cats?)
In just a few weeks, however, Buster, a neighbour’s cat had other ideas and moved in on a part-time basis. He now sleeps and eats here, and apparently also visits a number of other local houses for more food – possibly including his owner’s house.
Things were settled for quite a while until a fateful day last week when Sue met a fellow mad cat woman who I will call Carol (because that’s her name), who lives at the other end of our street. They got into conversation about a little ginger cat that had been effectively thrown out of someone’s house because they had a baby. This struck a chord with Sue because that’s how she got Misty as well.
I am normally quite a laid-back liberal-minded sort of guy, but the plight of this little cat even got to me. The full deyail of my views about such irresponsible pet owners are really not fit to publish on a respectable blog, but I will just say that I beleive that anyone who can mistreat an animal by leaving it outside in the cold and snow of the last few weeks is not fit to bring up a child.
When Sue told me about this cat, my heart of stone melted just a little and I told Sue to go and fetch it. My somewhat uncharacteristic emotional response may have been a lttle premature because she couldn’t find it that night, although Sue did attract the curious attention of at least one of our neighbours who is now as convinced as I am that she is the mad cat woman that I have already claimed her to be.
A day or so later, Charley, for that is the name that Sue has endowed him with, arrived. This simple sentence hides a great deal of hissing and growling between the newcomer and Misty. It also seems that Buster cornered Charley behind a settee and there was much noise and commotion that was only broken up when Sue picked Buster up.
This might have been a bit of a mistake on Sue’s part because the cute bundle of fluff pictured above clawed and bit Sue’s wrist. It also turned out to be a mistake on Buster’s part as this was the cause for his banishment from the front room to a bed under the kitchen radiator.
Two hours later we set off to hospital when Sue’s hand and wrist were swelling up and hurting a lot. She is now on antibiotics, but otherwise OK.
It also turns out that this cat is an un-neutered tom, but that Carol has links to an organisation that will get him “done” for free. Like everything else in Sue’s cat life, this turns out not to be simple. Originally, we were told that we would get a voucher to take him to our regular vet for the dirty deed to be carried out. Now we hear that he is being collected on Wednesday, but that he will have to go to Carol’s house on Tuesday night. We won’t see him again for about a week after the operation when I would guess that the whole process of getting him and the existing cats to co-exist peacefully will have to start again.
With the current arrangements, there is a tense stand-off in the front room, but no further signs of physical violence. Sue even managed to grab a photo of Charley this evening.
I’ll let you know what happens when Charley gets back from his personal adventure