Could it be? Oh dearie me. Could I be allergic to my cat? Oh drat! Hair on my clothes And all up my nose That hair in the eye It did make me cry.
Half a lifetime ago, a white kitten was with me briefly.
His long hair and Roman nose determined that he should be named Caesar. In the end he took up residence with my friend Tim and I got to keep Tim’s cat Mo. A story in itself.
Caesar slept on my bed.
One day I woke up with a very strange feeling in one eye. When I looked in a mirror: “Oh my!”
Tim was nearby so I asked his opinion.
Sikkim, another Himalayan (aka Muffin)
“Ah!” he said.
The orb in that eye seemed to have been replaced by a golf ball.
It was swollen and lumpy.
Eyes being rather important, we agreed to seek immediate help and luckily it amounted only to an injection of some sort of antihistamine.
“Go home and sleep” said the doc.
Which I did for some 12 hours. It was the only time I managed to sleep while I was on a midnight shift. When I woke, the eye was normal.
Somehow one of Caesar’s hairs had got into my eye.
At least in future I would know that having a “golf ball eye” is nothing to get excited about.
He was my first, Mo
I loved him so.
Two Tim’s. My friend Timothy and another of my Himalayans.
Often a cat’s name seems obvious. “Tim-Pooh” was not actually named after my friend but after the capital of Bhutan, in the Himalayas.
Poor Thimphu had been bred to have a fore-shortened nose which made life difficult for him.
He was 12 weeks old when he was given to me by concerned friends.
Thimphu was born two days before my beloved Yeti (Yeti-Pooh) died. He was tiny and struggled to reach his first pound of weight.
One does not “replace” a deceased pet, but their passing opens a space for one more that will claim another piece of your heart.
Thimphu was adorable.
He was funny and sweet and he loved to be petted.
My vet mentioned that some flat-faced animals benefit from re-constructive surgery so I took him to a specialist, but when they anesthetized him, they discovered that there was not enough cartilage for them to work with. Timmy continued to snuffle.
It was all he had ever known, but I would love to have made life more comfortable for him.
It is so wrong that people interfere with Nature’s design.
Another Himalayan joined us for a few short months.
You can see in the picture the difference between Thimphu’s poor flat face and Georgy’s normal nose.
Georgy was a sweet old boy that was rescued off a street where he was struggling to stay alive. His hair had been so matted, he couldn’t move.
When I read his story I contacted his rescuer. If he could cope with being part of a crowd, I would be happy to offer him a home.
So he lived out his days with us.
What I intended to point out here, was that I have had quite a few long-haired cats over the years. Apart from the episode with my eye and nearly losing a finger after foolishly allowing it to be bitten, I have not suffered physically.
Cat-litter and odor remover sprays are another issue. Those toxic sprays affect my breathing, so I carefully use very diluted Clorox.
Allergies can develop but, if was to discover that I had become allergic to my pets, I would simply learn to manage.
What I have never been able to manage is losing pets.
Annie one of the Washington cats.
Thimphu and Panther.
It was not my intention to write this today. Sometimes it’s as if I cannot control where my fingers go.
Then again, it was February 11th 2014, that I lost Panther who had been such a great buddy. His passing was the first of a painful sequence.
No amount of psycho-therapy has ever been able to cure me of what I know is pointless torment. It’s separation anxiety. I have been parted so often from people I love/d and I was always able to cope with that, but with animals it is simply different.
My bunnies, Macy and Joely.
They were a big part of my life in Washington State.
Yeti’s Suites opened in 2008.
“M” and Oliver were among the first residents, along with Emily, peeping out of the box.
“M” and Oliver were bonded pals and were offered a home together, but “M” was unable to settle in, so we went to fetch him back.
That weekend was hard.
Oliver remained with the lady who wanted him and Emily eventually found a wonderful home.
We never tried to home “M” again. He liked being master of the suites and was very attached to Grant.
There were so many others! There were many cats that I baby-sat. There were cats at Best Friends sanctuary in Kanab, Utah where I spent a few days helping out. It is so special.
There were of course, many cats that I met in my travels and could not bring home. As well as many other animals. They all lodged themselves deep in my heart.
Note to self:
Do not listen to requiem masses while writing about long-ago pets.
It’s not helped my red nose a bit.
Nov ’86 – 19th Nov 03
4 thoughts on “Anniversaries”
I really don’t know how you manage to cope with the grieving process so many times. After we lost Daisy, our British shorthair, we decided we could neither cope with a future loss, nor could we bear the thought of any cat outliving both of us!
I didn’t intend taking in any young cats after maybe 10 years ago but Willow and Blackie walked in and announced they were staying. They are 7/8 years old and I hate the idea of leaving before them but Grant is a lot younger than me. Sometimes, I admit, I thought my heart was really breaking and it gets harder with each one. I knew taking fosters would be hard but I always promised myself I would do something for animals and it was about the only thing I was capable of. Helping out at a “rescue” didn’t work mostly because I immediately figured out the owner was a hoarder. My trips to Best Friends were uplifting because it is such a positive place. Everyone is happy and the animals all seem to be smiling. Several of the creators of BF were/are British.
It’s amazing how big your heart is for animals (especially cats). We lost our two spaniels 6 months apart and my heart was broken for months (years) afterwards. And even though we love dogs, we still haven’t managed to welcome a dog back into our home. You have so many beautiful photos here of all the cats that have crossed your path – that cute little white bundle (Thimphu) is adorable!
It is a shame about the breathing problems, as I find those ‘flat-faced’ cats very attractive. Like you, if I became allergic to Ollie, I would just tolerate the allergy.
Best wishes, Pete.