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Life with Four Felines

Updated on April 16, 2017

The day Finnick and Ella were trapped with their brother and sister

For the Love of Cats

When I was growing up, we had dogs. Our dogs all lived long, healthy lives. All of our dog were valued members of our family. Never in all those years was a cat allowed to live with us. There were kittens born outside under our porch. They were fed but we weren't allowed to play with them. We were led to believe that cats were bad. So how did it get to be that I love cats?!

Crazy Cat Lady

When I moved to Israel in 1994, it was to a farming village. The only businesses there were farms and one small market. There were hundreds of cats. Many of the families fed them. They were, after all, good for the environment! I began to recognize individual cats and became familiar with their personalities. I started talking to them and a few responded. One of the first ones was Harry, a ginger cat named for the ginger haired prince. He was big and fluffy and would rub against my legs. He would let me pet him and often sat on my lap. My Israeli neighbors thought I was a bit touched in the head. They thought I was crazy playing with feral cats. I thought of myself as the cat whisperer, taming feral cats! One of my favorites was Prince Charles. He was a small tuxedo. Day after day, skittish Prince Charles would come and eat in my yard, then slink away. Each day I moved closer, until he stopped backing away. I sat in a chair just a couple of feet from the food. Eventually, he came to me. After that, Prince Charles visited me daily, climbing in my lap letting me pet him. These feral cats taught me to appreciate cats as the intelligent, beautiful animals they are.

Crazy About Cats Lady

After my Israel experience, I decided that when I "grew up", I wanted to be a crazy cat lady. Four years ago, my daughter convinced me to adopt a rescue kitten. That is how Phoebe became a member of our family. She was our first indoor cat. We loved and spoiled her. I would say "Hi" and she'd answer me something like "hi" I would say "I love you", she'd close her eyes slowly, then look at me lovingly. She was my girl. No two ways about it. She runs to the door when I come home, tells me when she's hungry or tired and loves to play. She is no kitten now. She is a very big cat. Last year I had a peeping Tom. She was up on her hind legs growling at the window! She is still a cat, sometimes aloof, hates being picked up but loves being held.She is the alpha female in our home.

My beautiful Phoebe

"There are two means of refuge from the miseries of life: music and cats."

~Albert Schweitzer

Getting Closer to the Goal

Three years ago we added Izzy (Isabella) to the mix. Another rescue cat. She was already two when we brought her home. We don't know much about her past only that it didn't seem to have been a happy one. Izzy is a bit "simple". She doesn't understand everything around her and was always afraid of her own shadow. As I write this, there is a storm outside. Izzy is cowering under my chair. Well, they are all here, actually. But up until recently, she would have been the one running from room to room, crying and looking for a place to hide. Now, she understands she is safe with me.

Pretty Izzy!

"Time spent with cats is never wasted."~Sigmund Freud

New Kittens

This past April, my friend worked to trap a family (a very large family) of cats in her yard and neighborhood. She brought four kittens and their mother home. Two of them now reside in our home. Enter Ella and Finnick (our first male!) Gone is the quiet, the boring, the mundane! Here is the messy, the busy, the chaos! The "babies" are now five months old. They are full of vim and vinegar! Phoebe is beginning to like them. Izzy has begun to tolerate them. I am definitely going crazy (does that count?) but the love and affection is well worth the loss of a calm and peaceful household.

Lovable Ella

Sweet Finnick

"I love cats because I enjoy my home; and little by little, they become its visible soul."
~Jean Cocteau

Hubs to read

For some great hubs and more informative reading by other cat lover's, please visit these hubs:

catgypsy


crazybeanerride


crazyprincess


My Cats have Stolen my Heart!

Right after the two little ones arrived (and began to demolish our home) I thought to myself, "WHAT HAVE I DONE??!!??" But what have I really done? I have added two more sources of joy and love to our little family. I have taken two more feral cats off the streets, filled their bellies and their hearts. Believe me, when I am scooping litter and taking mischevious kitties away from my jewlery...and shoes...and make-up....the list goes on, I still question. A little. But when one little imp after another comes by for some loving or gives me a little grin, I melt! And I know that there are way worse things to be than a crazy cat lady!

ok...so just one of the big girls!
ok...so just one of the big girls! | Source
His new favorite place!
His new favorite place! | Source
well, actually, this is his favorite place! (my arms!)
well, actually, this is his favorite place! (my arms!) | Source
And, just look how grown-up Miss Ella is!
And, just look how grown-up Miss Ella is! | Source

A Few New "Tails" to Tell

As you can see from the picture, Finnick loves the bathroom. If we can't find him, it's a sure bet, he's sleeping in the tub! Ella, being the girlie girl that she has, is constantly in trouble in the bathroom. This week, she manged to dye a bit of her fur brown by jumping on to the bathroom counter, right into the bottle of hair dye! She's thinking of going blond next! Speaking of Ella, she chewed through three phone chargers in a week. We are thinking of changing her name to Lucifera. Other changes: Feeding times have become less frantic but the litter boxes seem to be perpetually full. The big cats and the little cats still don't get along but they all agree that when it comes to bedtime, everyone hops into the same bed. And that bed, is usually mine!

Update

This hub was written over three years ago. While we still have four cats in our home, we have lost one and added another. Please check out more of our story:


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    • jennzie profile image

      jennzie 4 years ago from Lower Bucks County, PA

      I have three cats as well and enjoy how they have their own individual personalities.

      Great hub about your lovely cats. Voted up!

    • btrbell profile image
      Author

      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you so much! They are all precious. Thanks for stopping by!

    • catgypsy profile image

      catgypsy 4 years ago from the South

      Love this hub btrbell! Voted up and beautiful. I have 24 feral cats that I have either "tamed" or am still in the process of taming. I have 5 inside and 19 in their own screened in houses outside. I love all animals, but when you have this many cats, it's hard to introduce any other kind of animal. They are a handful, but I wouldn't give them up for the world. Your babies are adorable and so lucky to have found you. Great hub!

    • btrbell profile image
      Author

      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you so so much.I am honored that you enjoyed it. I am in awe of what you are doing. I hope someday to be able to do that. I can't tell you how much I am enjoying your expertise! While our babies are very precious to me, sadly they have several cousins/aunts/uncles who have not yet been trapped. Their mother was trapped a few days after them. She continued to feed them until they began solid food. She was then spayed and released back outside where she stays with her siblings, parents and the rest of her kittens. My friends are working to trap, treat and find homes (at least for the little ones) or release them back outside. This family is being cared for but continue to multiply. Their mommy was only 9 months. I wanted to take her also but knew our place was too small for 3 adult females. Thank you again!

    • bizzymom profile image

      bizzymom 4 years ago from New York

      This a great hub. It's wonderful that you are a "cat lady". I have a dog that I love, but I think cats are beautiful too. Congratulations to you and the kitties for a job well done. Thanks for the great pictures of the cats too!

    • btrbell profile image
      Author

      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you so much for reading and your comments! Our pets are our family. They are our babies. I have most definitely become a cat person but if push came to shove and I was asked, I would say "Pet Person"!

      Enjoy your baby!

    • thelyricwriter profile image

      Richard Ricky Hale 4 years ago from West Virginia

      Voted up, awesome, and beautiful. I love cats, always have since I was little. In many ways, they were close friends. You have beautiful cats:) I think it is cool that they are close like family and I really enjoyed reading the different quotes and learning a little more about you. Can't wait until I get out of this apartment so I can have pets again. Thanks for caring, it makes a difference. Any pet lover can appreciate such a heart as yours:)

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I don't know why but I didn't get notification of this hub, so I'm sorry I'm late to the party. Now, I have to tell you, I spent a good portion of my life not liking cats. They were just too aloof and independent for my taste; dogs, on the other hand, are in your face goofy and that I could relate to.

      So naturally every time I would go to a friend's house, and they had a cat, the cat would jump in my lap and look at me as if to say "here I am big boy, what are you going to do about it?" LOL

      Now that Bev and I are living together, her cat has adopted me; I am the only person she will allow to pet her while holding her. I'm not sure why cats like me, but I have to admit now.....I'm growing fond of them. Shhhh...don't tell anyone!

      Great hub!

    • btrbell profile image
      Author

      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you, thank you! Your secret is safe with me! And I will share one with you. They like you because you don't fawn all over them. They hate when people "gush." You mind your business and that is just fine with them! Mind you, if you are their person, you can gush!

    • btrbell profile image
      Author

      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      lyricwriter...thank you so much! I appreciate your stopping to read and your warm comments. We do love our babies. I hear you on the apartment. I am still in one. See? I must be crazy

    • epigramman profile image

      epigramman 4 years ago

      ....this is truly a labor of love and such an adorable presentation of pictures and heartfelt writing and the 'diva' in my picture is my mum's cat Little Miss Tiffy who now lives with me and she is 17 years old going on 18 and is a fountain of youth because she gets out everyday and my other cat is an all white deaf cat Mister Gabriel is quite a lady's man and a big eater - yes they are my two best friends and I live for my cats and tell them that I love them everyday!

      sending you warm wishes and good energy from lake erie time ontario canada 11:59am and both cats are outside on their deck soaking up the sun (Gabriel is on a leash because he is a deaf but he loves his walks along the beach with me

    • btrbell profile image
      Author

      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you so much, epigramman! Words from you mean so much! Enjoy your kitties everyday! Mister Gabriel and Little Miss Tiffy are very lucky to have someone like you to love them!

    • epigramman profile image

      epigramman 4 years ago

      Warm greetings today from warm sunny lake erie time 12:05pm and a good day to go into the water - I have until the end of this month for swimming season - and I will be posting this beautiful hub presentation of yours to my FB group Let's just talk music or cinema - in which you are more than welcome to join -

    • btrbell profile image
      Author

      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you so much! I am honored. It would be my pleasure to join. I just, in fact, left you a message on Summit of the Gods!

    • epigramman profile image

      epigramman 4 years ago

      hi Randi - just dedicated a surprise video to you in our group at FB.

      lake erie time 12:30pm

    • AudreyHowitt profile image

      Audrey Howitt 4 years ago from California

      I could be a crazy cat lady, but my husband and daughter are allergic--so I have a dog, my first dog, instead. Your post brought memories of Bill and Monie--and Thomas Pancakes---wonderful cats that I had the pleasure of being with through most of their lives

    • btrbell profile image
      Author

      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you so much for stopping by. What adorable names your cats had!

      You can be an honorary crazy cat lady

    • Made profile image

      Madeleine Salin 4 years ago from Finland

      Lovely hub! I have three adult cats and four kittens. I got my two eight year old cats from a cat shelter (they were 4 months old then). They both have big personalities and our big cat Tyson is the boss. I have found new homes for three of the kittens (our third cat is their mother) and we'll keep one. The rest will be moving in a month. I love having the kittens running around playing. Cats are wonderful animals. I couldn't live a day without them. I loved reading this hub. Beautiful.

    • btrbell profile image
      Author

      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you so much, Made. I really appreciate your kind words! Enjoy your cats! Each one is special. I look forward to reading your hubs!

    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 4 years ago from Wales

      Oh this is truly beautiful. I can see I am going to enjoy following you on here.

      Eddy.

    • btrbell profile image
      Author

      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you so much for reading and your kind words! Looks like a mutual admiration!

    • rcrumple profile image

      Rich 4 years ago from Kentucky

      You crazy cat lady, you! lol

      Great read. I've grown up with dogs, but since the military, have always had cats. Each have their own personalities for sure, and will talk with you when they get to know you well. They are much more intelligent than people give them credit for, there is no doubt. Why, both of mine even are writers, as you know! lol Great story! (btw, I deleted your comment from my hub so you wouldn't get in trouble leaving an addy there. Gotta protect my friends!)

    • btrbell profile image
      Author

      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you....first for covering my butt....oops! And second for stopping by to read this! I just thought you'd enjoy it! I wonder what my newest addition will think up for this halloween! Thanks always for your great feedback!

      The crazy cat lady!

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 4 years ago from sunny Florida

      btrbell...I do so love this. I too am called a cat whisperer and the crazy cat lady. The last place I lived there were many feral cats and they made friends with me and I fed them and adopted one who moved with me when I moved closer to my daughter. When it would rain, I would was their quilts I had given them to lay on in the winter, and, dry them and put them back out while they were warm for the kitties. They curled up and made a place in my heart. I hated to leave the four behind that I did but they were too wild to be caught.

      I love your story about your kitties. Thank you for sharing.

    • btrbell profile image
      Author

      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you so much for reading and your wonderful cpomments. I am loving this "they curled up and made a place in my heart" Best. Line. Ever! Thank you my fellow cat whisperes. If you are ever out here in Az, come and visit! i will have to update soon. The babies are almost full grown!

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 3 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      I loved learning about your cats! They are all beautiful. I grew up with dogs, like you. One day I went for an early Sunday morning jog and found two very young kittens beside the road. I took them home, where one of the family dogs adopted them. We've had both cats and dogs in the family ever since.

    • btrbell profile image
      Author

      Randi Benlulu 3 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you so much, Alicia! Our cats are very special to us. Unfortunately, we just lost one of our babies. It has been devastating for us :(

      It's fnny, I also grew up with dogs. I only got the first cat because we lived in an apartment. She was such a sweetheart, we just kept going.

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