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my black tabby cat

Updated on February 17, 2009

Is your pet special?

Othella, or baba for short, is five years old now.She is rather small and petite, with very dainty feeding and grooming habits.  She became my permanent companion when the owner, who acquired her from the shelter, didn't want to care for her anymore. Poor kitty had not been fed properly and was starved for affection.  She had not had her shots and needed to be spayed. 

The owner, of course, had a change of heart a year or so after baba had become the love of my life. I had steeled myself for just such an encounter,   and coldly turned her down.  It didn't matter to me that she was into drugs when she gave buba up, how could I depend on her to watch out for this very special cat?

We came to an agreement over her kills.  She was not allowed to kill birds, but if she brought one into the house, I could catch it and release it with no harm. I showed her how ermotikonal I could be when she caught and brought a dead bird into the house.  She never again killed a bird.  Mice were ok as long as she didn't eat them. So, she would cram it down, hungry or not, then regurgitate the mess to show me she is a great hunter.

 She will not accept food from anyone unless I approve.  When I found out the witch next door was feeding her little "treats"  I put a stop to it so that she stays away from the offending creature.  She is not a good witch.  She had two cats that suddenly disappeared.  When I asked what happened to them, she said they were fine but I haven't seen them in weeks. I didn't see this person as someone who likes cats  or tolerated them.  I especially feared that my cat was in danger and warned her to stay away from the witch.  She was happy enough to stay clear of the witch; her instincts had already warned her that the woman was up to no good.  Baba stays very close to home, preferring the relative safety of the roof to risking encounters with possibly dangerous competitors for space or rank in the pecking order.

It is not recommended that pet owners allow their pets outside unattended. Cats may be trained easy enough to stay indoors, if the notion of outdoor freedom is never introduced. Cats are superb at controlling their outdoor environment. They are extreme killers with major tools to take out prey or  weaker competitors. their nose is used to identify things like if a cat visitor in the night was male or female, sick or well, pregnant, from the neighborhood or a stranger.They do serious damage to the environment, if left unchecked, they may wreak havoc on anything that comes in range.They have no lack of opportunity to kill, and do so without compunction or regret.

When it is cold or rainy, or the mean feral male threatens, Baba slides under the down comforter. The house is heated only a few days out of the year, so that it is usually colder in the house than outside. She is fussy about her food, how the bed is made up, and exactly who sleeps where.  Her coat is jet black, which she spends hours cleaning.  She doesn't mind the bed rolling or my getting in and out of bed.  It's as if she knows I need extra room and that pain is a constant taskmaster.  She seems to understand these things. 

In many ways, we are a team, each anticipating the needs of the other and making accomomodations in order to keep the peace.  Like man and wife, we have mediated the consequences of my absences or her desire to sleep out. She listens when it seems things are getting out of control, such as when the housekeeper gets the vacuum cleaner out,  which must sound like the hounds of hell to her sensitive ears.  Like a lot of wives, she is an angel around strangers, but treats me like a bone or ignores me altogether when no one else is around.  Even as a kitten, she never once scratched or bit me. 

She gets special treatment, not because she is a replacement for a human companion, but because she has seen me through major illness, requires little of my time, and will warm my feet while I am at the computer on a drafty, cold night.  It pains me that people are cruel to these lovely creatures whom God has chosen  to help keep away lonliness  and  give comfort  when there is little forthcoming  from humans.

Do you have an animal that is there for you during hard times?  What makes your animal distinctive and do you think it is important we give all animals respect and allow them to continue in nature as always?  How would the world be without animals? 






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    • Lucky Cats profile image


      6 years ago from The beautiful Napa Valley, California

      This is a wonderful story about your friend and companion Othella. I just love this resonates completely with me. Also, I have an Othello...and Augustine among others...I'm glad I saw your story on t he side bar while reading another hub about animals. I hope all is continuing well with you and othella...Cats are amazing, beautiful creatures, as you've so well described here. UP Awesome Beautiful (because you care), Interesting Useful ...

    • Teresa McGurk profile image


      10 years ago from The Other Bangor

      Spoken like a true friend. Yep. I'm sorry about the illness and pain -- but glad you have such a good companion to warm your heart. And your feet! Great hub -- people who think cats aren't affectionate have no idea what they're talking about, do they?


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