Friday, May 15, 2009

Spin Cycle: Pets: My 3 Sons

Growing up and the entire time I was married, we were not allowed to have any pets. My kids begged us for a kitten. But it was always no, no pets. The ex finally relented, somewhat from time to time.We did have 3 Budgebriars (blue parakeets) . First we got Lizzie for Gina for Christmas one year. One day Dani came flying into the family room, throwing the French doors wide open. This caused the cage to fall over and Lizzie literally flew the coop. Bye Lizzie! Some time later, we got 2 more parakeets. We named them Laverne and Shirley. Laverne and Shirley died, but I don't know why.

Next in our pet adventures, Gina's boyfriend at the time, Richard raised rabbits for 4H Club. He gave one to Gina. I can't remember what she named him. Gina swears this rabbit was Bunnicula! (anyone familiar with the author James Howe knows he had a series of children's books about Bunnicula, the vampire bunny) He kept trying to bite her (he was probably hungry.) The rabbit lived in a cage in the garage. We had him for several months. One day, I went in and the bunny was stiff as a board, dead as a doornail.

Of course, we had our fair share of fish in a very nice fish tank. Died. All of them. Every time we got some. We really were not a pet family. It was clear pets were doomed as soon as they entered our front door.

So, we didn't have any pets for a long time. The kids' dad made up some lame ass story about being allergic and that's why we never had cats or dogs.

Then, the asshole ex-husand left in January 2005. He hates cats. I thought a kitty would make a nice replacement for the ex. That summer Danielle wore me down and we were off to Diane's Pets to look at kittens. There were 2 gray striped tabbies in the cage, brothers. Of course, we didn't know which one to choose. Dani even said, "Which one should we get?" With that, Cameron hopped up, trotted over to the door of the cage and we had our very first kitty! My son named him. So, we get Cam home and everyone is happy. I can't get the other kitty out of my head, leaving him at the pet shop, all alone. So a day or so later, I go back to get the other kitten but he's already been adopted. That's ok. I only wanted one cat anyway.

About 3 months go by. Dani and I head out to the new Petsmart store that just opened up down the road. We need "stuff" for Cameron. I didn't realize this, but Petsmart has a "Cat Angel Network", an adoption center for cats. So I'm busy picking up a collar and kitty toys and stuff and Dani drags me over to see this adorable little black kitty who is about 3 months old. "Please, please, please, Mom! Look how cute he is!!! We really need to bring this kitty home! Please Mom!"

Sigh. (can you see the "pushover" sign on my forehead?)

So we inquire about the kitty, whose name is Mason. Well, Mason is part of a pair of cats that are supposed to be adopted together. His brother (a gray striped tabby, obviously not his biological brother) has the name Dixon. I tell the lady that I don't want 2 cats. I already have a cat at home. She takes my name and number, "just in case".

About a week goes by and I get a call from the Cat lady, telling me that there's a lady who wants to adopt Dixon, who already has a cat. She thought since each kitty will have a sibling at the new homes, we can adopt Mason. So, off we go to Petsmart to get Mason and bring him home.

At this point in time, Cameron is about 5 months old and Mason is 3 months old. We bring Mason in, and let Cameron see him. Cam sniffs him and sniffs him and proceeds to chase this poor little kitty all over the house! Poor terrfified Mason runs up inside my sofa, which is also 2 recliners. No way in hell was this kitty coming out! I had to cut the back of my sofa open to get to him!

For the better part of 3 days, Mason lives in my office, just off the family room while Cameron has the run of the house. Finally I decide this is ridiculous. I let Mason out of the room and told them they're just going to have to learn to get along. And they do.

The 2 cats are funny. Cameron almost always goes out the front door and goes out mostly in the daytime. Mason will use the family room door and mostly goes out at night.

Two years go by and the 2 cats are getting along most of the time. They're typical brothers who will roll around and snarl and fight sometimes. Mostly they ignore each other.

Last summer, I went to my nail salon to get my nails done and Sam is standing there, with this teensy little kitty in his arms. He talks me into holding him while he does my nails. The kitty is only 2 or 3 weeks old and his mother died. He was found at their mechanic's garage. He's brown with blue eyes. So dummy me takes him home. He's so small, I have to bottle feed him EVERY TWO OR THREE HOURS!!! And I have to teach him to use the litter box and teach him how to poop. For the record, since I don't have that rough tongue that cats have and no way in hell am I putting my mouth anywhere near this kitty's ass, I use a wet paper towel to "stimulate" him. It works. He's litter trained in about 3 days.

I had to bathe him in my kitchen sink with Dawn dish liquid and discover not only is he not brown but black but he's loaded with fleas!!! So he got several baths that first couple of weeks.
Gina's boyfriend, Gene suggested we name him Java because he's the color of black coffee. (actually his first idea was Juan Valdez). The vet confirms he's a boy.

Java is so small that I keep him in my bedroom and bathroom, away from the other 2 cats for several months, until he can defend himself. Cameron doesn't like him and mason (the big sissy) runs from him. I even had to take him to John's with me on the weekends and he also went to Ocean City, MD with us last October.

Now Java likes to travel in the car and he also hops into the shower with me sometimes.

I haven't gotten Java neutered yet because other more pressing bills came up, so he's now sowing his wild oats all over our neighborhood! He disappears for days on end and he's very cocky now. I used to worry about him but I don't any more.

So now I have 3 male cats. I'm afraid I'm turning into a Cat lady. They really are very friendly cats. I'm surprised how much I like them! I never thought of myself as a cat person, but apparently I am!

Hey! Want to join in the fun? Why not check out Sprite's Keeper for details. Jen gives us a topic each Friday and we have a week to spin a tale about whatever she wants to talk about! She posts everyone's spin on Friday so you can read what other people have to say!


darsden said...

Aren't you a sucker for the poor lil animals know I am. Just keep them cats away from my birds and we will be okay :-) have a great weekend!

Anonymous said...

I DO see the sucker sign on your forehead. But they needed a home and you were there. Good Deed.

I have two birds that I would love to see fly the coop.

Lilly said...

That is a sweet story. No I dont see you as a cat lady I just see you as someone with a big heart. Those cats are lucky you came along!

Sprite's Keeper said...

3 cats?! I wouldn't be able to survive one! You have such a heart, Joanie! Love this Spin! You're linked!

♥ Braja said...

Oh but I think you're the PURRRFECT cat lady! I love cats...and i loved your story :)

Pseudonymous High School Teacher said...

Cat ladies are the coolest. Great spin Joanie.

Anonymous said...

A cat lady! Ha! That's what my friends say I'm going to become in a few years since I don't know if I wanna get married (despite having a kick ass BF) or have any kids (I work with kids. My mind's made up)

If I do become a cat lady however, I will be rubbing anyone's ass with a wet towel or otherwise.
Great spin!

Kingsmom said...

Wow. I have two cats the newest being about 9 weeks old. They really don't get along. Good for you for bringing each of them home.

Adrian said...

Woohoo Marsha!!! Gorgeous card, stunning in its simplicity :D logo design