The Cat Mother

Her name was Violet, and she peered out at me from her erstwhile mother’s arms in a Facebook post; four nearly identical little kitten faces, who I was to learn later had been discovered abandoned in a garage about two weeks shy of being ready to leave their mother. Her foster mom Suzy was a friend of mine and when I saw those little faces on social media some magic they contained made me inquire if one of them was a little girl. The partially formulated idea in the back of my head sort of blossomed into reality as I seriously considered the idea of owning a critter and (gasp!) being responsible for one.

Having always considered myself a dog person, no one is more surprised than I am at suddenly being thoroughly owned by a cat; not even my family who has always been under the assumption that I hated felines. How did I know cats didn’t like to live in mailboxes? Growing up on the farm cats were relegated to mouse duty and were rarely given names. Never allowed in the house, they still had to follow the rigid barn behavior protocols of the other animals and mind their manners around milking time. They knew they would be rewarded with strip milk when the chores were over, so they waited patiently around the big shallow milk pan as soon as they heard the compressor start. In contrast, the farm dogs were allowed into the house and were members of the family so I was much more familiar with the rudiments of dog ownership, but my suburban lifestyle and the fact that I liked to travel at a moment’s notice made having a dog impractical.

After inquiring about the adoptability of the kittens and being told they would be ready in a couple of weeks I decided to visit them; it did not take long for the little girl kitten to latch herself firmly to me like a cockleburr and I knew I had to take her home. She was a little gray shorthaired tabby with bright green eyes and beautiful bullseye markings on her sides; I was completely smitten. After waiting a couple of weeks for her to be cleared with the vet, chipped and neutered I was able to bring her home.

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It has been fun to watch her develop from a wobbly kitten into a young adult cat and she has been instrumental in reminding me to find the curiosity in everything; nearly anything can become a toy or a game when you’re a kitten and her joie de vivre is infectious. Somehow Violet ended up being one of those loving and affectionate kitties who worship their owner, so my fears of ending up with an aloof and elusive house cat were unfounded. She follows me around the house like a dog and curls up next to me at every opportunity. It is amazing how much personality can be contained in that little eight pound body and she makes me laugh every single day even through some very dark times. In spite of the litter box duty, the cat hair and the vet bills I am very fortunate to have adopted such a delightful little creature and I hope we have many years of snuggling, purring and tuna breath ahead.

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1 Comment

  1. glikbach said,

    February 3, 2017 at 8:48 pm

    She is just like her mother, an awesome little survivor.


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