Cats and other fun

I received a message from my friend Jill about some of her cats peculiarities and it reminded me of the many, many cats we had on the farm. Since we also had dogs, some days were like living in an animal circus.

In the beginning I had a German Shepherd that my husband brought in to me one night a couple of weeks after our wedding. I have loved German Shepherds for most of my life, after taming one my dad brought home when I was about twelve. It almost became a victim of Highway 81 when he strayed too close to the road and almost got hit by one of the coal trucks that passed by us every five minutes. His name was Duke, if I remember correctly, and after that close encounter he ran up to me for the first time without his teeth bared and a growl in the throat. I held him close and spoke to him for several minutes and after a while he stopped trembling and just snuggled up to me. No one else was able to play with him, but after that incident he was my buddy — until Dad decided he was dangerous and took him back to the person who gave him to us. It broke my heart, but I was only one out of dozens who were happy to see him go.

So, anyway, my first animal on the farm was a German Shepherd puppy, named Duke after my first one. A few weeks later my hubby brought in a baby racoon that had fallen out of its nest, thinking I would be afraid of it. I named her JoJo, and now had two pets of my own. They had joined my hubs own dog, a coon hound of all things, as part of the family. Since the hound was old and just wanted to sleep all the time there were never any problems with our animal family until — the next rescue he brought was a cat with five kittens.

Samantha, the cat, was a gift for our daughter, and was kept inside the house after a few close encounters of the worst kind with the dogs. By that time JoJo had a family of her own and as soon as they were old enough they all went back to the woods and their normal wild living, so the cats seemed to be just what was needed to round out the family. The kittens were named after the favorite TV detectives. We had Stansky, Hutch, Colombo, Cannon, and Dillon. Okay, so Matt Dillon was a western sheriff, but he was also a favorite of most of us (and I still watch Gunsmoke to this day). Mama cat was named Samantha, and after the original five had outgrown house cat status and welcome they became barn cats, gravitating there each time they had escaped the confines of the house before being left out one night by mistake. Samantha was a cat only a mom could love, claws extended all the while, but my daughter was wild about her.

Time passed and Samantha’s time came round again, so one of her friends smuggled her tomcat in to play with Samantha. A few weeks later, Samantha gave birth to seven this time. Oh, daddy was a solid white cat while Sam was gray, so from that litter we got one white cat with one blue eye and one green eye. He was named Thumper. I think that was the name given after he was weaned, while one sister, who had endeared herself to us all was also kept and named Priscilla. My hubby loved to play with the cats when he came in at night, inventing all kinds of toys for them to chase, but one day he noticed that each time I used the electric can opener the cats all came running to the kitchen, thinking they were going to be fed again. The sound of the opener was usually followed by their food dishes being filled with the combination of wet and dry food I gave them, and even though they were only fed one time a day they couldn’t tell time except by their stomachs. They bolted the food in the morning and were ready for more as soon as the can opener was heard. Thumper could be heard bounding across the floor from wherever he had been hiding and into the kitchen. Pris was always a lady, making a dignified entrance. Naturally pushing the button on the can opener became hubs favorite pastime after that.

Now as for Priscilla, she was a lover. She curled around our necks and purred in our ears constantly. And I do mean constantly! Not so bad during the day when we were all awake, but at night she alternated victims, choosing from the three kids but always beginning in my bed, wrapped around my head and purring in my ear. LOUD purring! Like a buzz saw purring. After I pushed her off for the third time she would move over to hub’s head. He would shove her out into the living room and shut the door. She seemed to need to show her love for her humans though so undaunted by being shunned twice, she moved on to the kids rooms. We could only chuckle into our pillows as she picked on the boys, being pushed off with a few choice words by each of them before finally seeking refuge with her mom and a sure welcome in our daughter’s room. I’ve never understood why she didn’t go there first, unless possibly her mom pushed her off in there.

These cats also spent time outside — each time the door opened they sped out until finally they only visited inside once in a while. The number of outside cats seemed to grow, and each year we had two new white cats with one blue eye and one green eye, all tamed in some way by my husband who could be seen at all times walking around the farm with a cat on his shoulder.

The only photos I could find were of Max, my Pekinese, but none of any of the cats. So here’s Max as a puppy. Since this was his first day with me the rope was the only thing I had to tie him outside for the time I was cleaning out my car.


12 thoughts on “Cats and other fun”

    1. I agree there. I’ve had so many wonderful four- legged babies it just doesn’t seem real now not to have one. Unfortunately I am not able to care for one now. It sure doesn’t stop me from wanting a new puppy person though, Hugs!

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Hello Angela. We always rescued dogs until I couldn’t walk or do much with them outside anymore and Ron was working 12 hour shifts. Then we switched to rescuing cats. Now that Ron has retired, we may rescue a dog or two, but I think we always will have cats. Hugs

        Liked by 1 person

    2. They really are a vital part of our lives, Scottie. I’m glad Ron can walk a dog now and hope you get a sweet one. I always looked at the puppies and dogs (cats also) at the local pound, and found the rescue animals to be the best. The only dog we had that my youngest son would claim was from the pound and was going to be put to sleep when we brought him home. Mike immediately let us know Bandit was HIS dog and he would be taking care of him. They were inseparable for the duration of Bandit’s life. Mike was the only one who had never before identified with any animal, professing to hate them before that. He was inconsolable after we lost that one, and as far as I know has never transferred his love to another one. Hugs!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m glad she returned to the wild also. I never tried to pen her up or do anything that would keep her tamed, just enjoyed her while she was with me. Just isn’t right to tame wild animals and JoJo was a sweetheart. She would ride around on our shoulders, and really endeared herself to me when my mother-in-law had her there and she defecated on her shoulder and all down her back. Mom was okay about it, but she never was that close to any of us. Still, it wasn’t nice of me to laugh.
      As for the babies that were lost to me, they all hold a place in my heart and I know there is a heaven for them. The dogs give unconditional love and ask for nothing in return except a filled food dish. I’ll always miss them but know they are chasing rabbits in a special part of heaven.


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