“Human sacrifice, dogs and cats, living together… mass hysteria!”
That’s right, the great Bill Murray aka Dr. Peter Venkman, in that cinematic masterpiece: Ghostbusters.Why yes, Dr. Venkman, it could have been the end of the world, but a year later we’re still here, and we’ve morphed into dogs and cats peacefully cohabitating. Who knew?
I am not a cat person – my friends and family know this. I have been a solid member of “Team Canine” all of my life. Yet, it’s been over a year and I’m still coexisting with a cat. How did this happen you ask?
Last year, on a dark and stormy winter night, I was taking our dog Taz out for his final late night walk. As we trouped up the driveway, out from under the car came this pitiful little cry. Ugh, a cat.
I sent hubby Greg out to investigate and he returned with this little mess of a thing wrapped up in his shirt. Even I could see she was in real trouble – just a bag of bones, wearing a little blue collar with a bell, wet, tired, and severely malnourished. A midnight run to the store for kitty litter and cat food and fast forward to today, cohabitating with a fat and happy feline. I thought my ace-in-the-hole would be Taz. Wrong: turns out he’s a cat lover – thanks a lot dude.
Having a cat in my house flies in the face of everything I know to be true about myself. My previous disdain for cats goes way back in my personal history. There is even a decades old ugly rumor that I killed my BFF Danielle’s cat: Tisha. Not true, but the damn thing did die two weeks after it scared the hell out of me one night during a sleepover.
If I’m being honest, our cat has grown on me. Her big green eyes are very alluring when she’s trying to get my attention. I’m reminded that Taz and I weren’t exactly the best of buddies in the beginning of our relationship over twelve years ago. If you’ve read my book, you know that Taz and I have faced challenges such as the time he ate my wedding bouquet, and when he peed on the Christmas tree, and when he pooped all over the front door (probably because he ate my wedding bouquet). We survived all the perils and he’s become the very best companion and truly part of the family.
There are tell-tale signs that the cat has now moved into permanent fixture status:
Strike One: hubby gave her a name – Bonz (because she was a bag of bones when we found her). Have no idea if she likes her name because cats don’t come when you call them – apparently they don’t work that way.
Strike Two: Hubby bought her a cat bed – which she ignored and now sleeps at the foot of our bed each night.
Strike Three: Hubby put a NC State cat collar on her. When you connect your pet to your alma mater, they’re permanent.
What I’ve learned from this experience:
- I’ve mastered the intricacies of cleaning out the litter box.
- Cats, on principle, don’t generally respond to here kitty, kitty; they walk away in the opposite direction, only to materialize out of thin air quite suddenly – when you least expect it.
- Dogs love to travel, cats do not. Here is Taz ready for a trip to the lake:
And here is Bonz:
- Bonz is kind of cute and likes to curl up at my feet or jump up into my lap while I’m writing. This is fairly irresistible.
- Bonz is a bit of a flirt and knows how to wrap Greg around her little tiny kitty paw. This one really isn’t much of a surprise. Greg is a push-over for anything cute and cuddly (we call him the baby whisperer).
- Almost all Calico (Bonz is actually a “Tortoiseshell or Tortie” cat) cats are females.
So here we are: a boy and a girl; a Republican and a Democrat; a cat and a dog; all living under the same roof. What’s next – mixing chocolate and vanilla ice cream? Congress actually agreeing and accomplishing … anything? FSU winning the baseball College World Series (well, a girl can dream…)?
Perhaps you can teach an old dog new tricks – up here in the middle-aged cheap seats we are sometimes willing to change; sometimes.
What about you; have you changed much over the years? Anything you once swore “never, ever, never” but you’re happily doing now?