I live with five cats. And let me tell you, it can make life interesting. Non cat owners look at cats as furry little nuisances who leave hair all over the place and, unlike dogs, have no real use for humans except when its convenient for them. Cat owners will tell you different...although much of the previous statement IS correct (I can't tell you how many times I've called for a cat to come to just have them look at me with that look..the one that says "yea...right"...only to have them purring in my face and rubbing all over my head at 4 a.m. because they were in the mood to be petted) there are truly so many other facets to their personalities.
Humphrey is my oldest cat. He's about 10, maybe 11. Humphrey Doolittle and I have a long history involving many bodily fluids..on his part. I don't know what kind of cat he is..but in my opinion he has to be the product of at least ONE purebred parent to have had as many medical issues as he's had. When he was a kitten we bought another kitten so he would have company (he's always been a little clingy). Ellis had a huge personality and Humphrey was always with her, taking care of her, looking out for her...then she got sick. Some hereditary kidney disease. She couldn't walk upright.she would walk into walls or fall over, and she was constantly cold so we would keep her bundled up and on a heating vent or under the covers. And Humphrey was always right there curled up with her. We ended up having to put her down and poor Humph was so depressed. He actually moped around the house, and would sleep curled up on the blanket we kept her wrapped it. It was sad. Directly after that we had him neutered, and apparently one of his testicles never descended so they had to go searching for it, I think that, and the stress over Ellis just was too much for his system because it was after this that we had the Poop period of Humphrey's life happen. Remember when I said hes always been clingy? Well after Ellis' death it got worse and he would often curl up under my blankets near my heart to sleep, which was fine until his intestines went awry. I woke up one morning thinking I had to change the cat box...yea..it wasn't the cat box...I was covered...he was covered..the bed was covered...As I was cleaning everything up I watched him run off..and his tail twitched, and when it twitched poop came FLYING out of his butt like a poop rocket on steroids! So back to the vet we went. They tested for parasites, over and over and over. The Poop Period went on for a good month and the vet was all but clueless. I finally did some research and found something called IBS (Inflammatory bowel syndrome), it was usually brought on by stress and could be treated with injections of cortisone. I figured I'd bring it up to the vet, he tried to tell me all the reasons why it couldn't/shouldn't be that but I stuck to my theory and told him "at this point, is one shot of cortisone really going to hurt?". He agreed, reluctantly, and within 4 hours he was completely cured..the Poop Period was over! Unfortuantly that was when he started throwing up...thats never stopped. Another interesting Humphrey fact is that he won't kill a mouse. He will let them go unharmed. I called him the Buddhist cat for years because of that...until a strange dog came in the house and the cat became a demon spawn on crack...Poor dog.
Midgisi is the second eldest. My daughter Aysha brought him home. He's light grey with BIG round eyes, and too damn smart for his own good. I've had to install locks on all the doors in my house because he knows how to open them. He also has a strange habit of going into Aysha's room and picking up something cotton, usually socks, but occasionally bags of cotton balls, and dragging them downstairs making a weird chirping noise. I always blamed the kids for the socks on the floor until I caught him doing this..now I yell at him "Midgi! Stop leaving your dirty socks on the floor!" lol.
I got Thimble for Midge to play with. She was so cute and small that Tryphon named her Thimble. After two litters of kittens...her head and tail stayed small..but her body is an immense mass..looks almost like she swallowed a ball. And she's a little, well, vacant. She loves Tryphon though. Every night she runs up the stairs with us and gets up on his bed to go to sleep. She's definitely T's cat.
Special Bob is the product of Midgie and Thimble. He's Lyli's cat and sleep with her most nights. He wasn't always Special Bob, he used to be Stupid Bob because he would run to jump onto something and jump INTO it (chair backs, walls..etc) he even has a moon shaped scar on his nose because of it. We had to change his name though, because the boys, being boys, started calling Lyli (remember, hes her cat) Stupid Lyli. *sigh* We also call him Noodle Cat or Yoga Bob because when he wants you to pat him he'll get beside you and start rolling into a ball onto his head..then stick his back leg up in the air..its truly strange, like a cat doing a pretzel impression.
Lastly we have the interbred member of the family, Salem. He's the product of Bob and Thimble. He's MY cat and he really acts like a Siamese cat. He loves water, acts kind of like a dog, is VERY vocal (he answers me when I talk to him), loves his leash..If i touch his leash he starts meowing and rubbing against my leg, and when i put the loop part of the leash down (its a cat leash so the loop goes around his head then another part goes under his chest and up over to clip the whole thing together) he puts his head though it and stands still so i can hook the rest together. And, yes, he will walk on the leash, its a slow process because he has to roll in all the dirt he can find...but he will walk. He also hates Mike, and will hiss at him whenever he thinks he can get away with it. He loves everyone else in the family, it's just Mike he has a problem with, and that might be jealously because if I'm talking to or patting another cat, and he isn't sleeping somewhere, he will come over and get in between me and the cat, and if the attention persists..he will..very slowly, reach out with his paw and dig his claws into the offending cats head..and drag it toward the ground. I think the Gods heard me say "I'd love a Siamese cat" and sent me Salem. Interesting fact: When he was a kitten Aysha was calling him Malakai, but I had a dream that there was this huge skeleton of a tree, and there was a black cat in it and then all of a sudden the name Salem appeared under the cat in flames...so I named him Salem.
Life with them is interesting, their personalities are so different, but watching them is so entertaining, and I know if I'm feeling sick or down, they will come and lay with me on my bed (I try and tell myself they're there because they know I'm upset..even though I'm sure they're there because they think the bed belongs to them :-P). It really distresses me that the older I get the more I can tell I have a cat allergy. I know that eventually having cats will be a health issue for me and that makes me really sad because I can't imagine living my life without a cat in it somewhere. Oh well, maybe as a moving out gift all my kids will get a kitten from me..that way when I go to visit I can sit and hold a cat in my lap and listen to it purr until it gets bored and goes to lay in a sunny window where it can watch the birds and squirrels and eventually roll over onto its back and fall asleep. How difficult the life of a cat is....all that sleeping and grooming. I think in my next incarnation I'm going to request cat form! lol