||I'm NOT A DOG!
|In December 2011 we adopted our first cat. Meadhran came from the same woman who we adopted Sachairi from and who had returned for a visit and found that the situation he was in wasn't as she had hoped. So despite Cù being
very hostile towards cats, we figured, from what we had been told, he'd
be a good shop cat. So we met again, Sach had some time playing
with her, and we came home with the cat as well.
Supposedly he and Sach were great friends, but from the beginning Sach
acted almost offended to see him. He was skittish and unfriendly,
wanting nothing to do with us. As it was winter and the shop was
closed, this was okay for the time but we were worried if we couldn't
win his trust hem might be gone as soon as we had the shop opened
up. We still do not know if he did actually get out a couple of
times and go back in as this outdoor winter shot may or may not be him,
there are a lot of feral black cats on the hill. Obviously, from
other animals that sometimes get in (and we'll get to that), the place
isn't very secure. But the shop was warm, so despite his apparent
feral nature, he was later in there.
We'd go into the shop, he'd go and hide, if we got close to his hiding
spot he'd growl. We put a blanket in his favorite hiding spot, which
got him to be closer to where we could look in. We would do so and talk
softly to him, in hopes that he'd get use to us. We also hung a toy
there and would try to get him to play by moving the string outside the
It worked, for on January 10, 2012 I went in to get
the horses' food, peeked in and instead of growling or hissing, he
meowed at me. I meowed back. I moved the toy we had and he grabbed it.
He put his nose up to the hole a few times and
then....he poked his head out! This allowed me to scritch the top of
his head and.....after two times of this, he crawled out. There was
much me scritching him and him rubbing against my hands and legs, so I
am now his possession. He wanted to
go eat, and actually stopped to see if I was going to follow before
jumping up to eat. I was sitting on the freezer next to where we have
his food up higher patting him when Aaron, who just got home, came in
Meadhran bolted towards his hidy-hole. I went over to Aaron to try to
demonstrate that he was a friend, but...he wasn't convinced and
retreated. However, Aaron's quiet nature quickly won him over.
We could then get him vetted and for awhile he remained the shop cat
and worked his way through our pest problem. We would sit out there
holding him, often in front of the fire. This shop cat thing
seemed to be working.
One of the benefits we hoped for in having a cat to get rid of the mice
would be less chance of other small predators following the rodents and
discovering the buffet of chickens. However, they were still
getting in, as we found out. I discovered his face swollen, he
had gotten bitten, probably something fangy rather than a rodent, and
it was infected. I had a grand adventure getting him to the vet and
back, which involved running over what turned out to be chainsaw blades
and having damage to the underside of the car on the way home. (No,
really, someone apparently lost a bucket full out of their truck, they
were totally invisible on the road at night and this was followed by a real fun time explaining this to our insurance company.)
With the infection we didn't want him to stay in the shop and we did
have this whole other section of house (we live in the "in-law"
apartment still) where he could be more comfortable. And he was.
So that is where he has lived, with us playing with him when we went to
the gym and me sometimes curling up on a couch to try to write or
sometimes watch a video on the laptop. Gleann also loves visiting him, absolutely adores him, while Sach seems to be still put out that he is here.
This also worked out real well, as that part of the house had a real
mouse problem too. And he does like to hunt. He still loves to go
outside in the summer, sometimes sits on the porch in the winter for a
bit, but does not like to go into the shop...although he sometimes does
do a rodent sweep.
Since we have lost Cù, we started bringing him in to the apartment while Òrlaith was leashed. She didn't seem too interested, but we also didn't
want to stress her when she got sick so we didn't make it often.
However, since losing her, we have let him come in here during the
day. He does have some issues with not respecting the shrines,
which are much more cluttered than the small gym one, so we take him to
the other side at night. As we are also likely to adopt
another Greyhound, which will have to be more cat safe than past ones
have been, there is a chance that he'll only be over part time if the
hound isn't totally cat safe. But Gleann is quite happy to have
Meadhran in here, while Sach seems a bit annoyed.
Contents and design, except
where noted otherwise below, copyright © 1998-2014 Kym Lambert
and Aaron Miller
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graphic from the World of Celtic
Clipart from Clipart Castle