Feline

I woke up this morning to a cat sitting on my back casually grooming her nails.  She only weighs eight pounds, so she is not very noticeable unless she pounces or jumps on me for some reason.  Quietly climbing onboard is a subtle change in my environment and is only somewhat disturbing to my sleep.  This is the cat who appeared outside our sliding glass door on Christmas Day 2007, meowring and howling and trying to climb the glass.  It was an icy day and I assumed she must belong to someone who was away for the holidays.  A caretaker must have let the cat out by accident and she had shown up at our door.  Each time we went outside, she ran and watched us from a distance.  First, I set out some water, for which she was obviously grateful.  Later in the day, when the cat was still nearby, I set out some food.  She ate enormous amounts for her petite size, as if she had not had a square meal in days.  As night came on, and the cat was still present, we put out a cat heating pad and blankets for her to sleep on.  This pattern continued for days until I could finally catch the cat in my arms and take her to the vet for a check-up, vaccinations, and an appointment for spaying.  Once that cat, now named Lucy, came into our house, she never looked back.  Outside is not where she wanted to live, in spite of the two feline bullies already in the house.  So, this is the cat who now sleeps with us at night.  It seems to give her courage to face each day and gives her an obvious leg-up on the bullies and their chasing.  Now she is almost as apt to chase one of the bullies as they are to chase her.  For the mental health of a stray cat we brave my husband’s allergies and my tendency to wake up for small nighttime disturbances.  Gradually our house makes adjustments for the well-being of its furry family members.

Lucy

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