Pet Tips 'n' Tales
Dawggone! A Praying Cat!

Photo by Mary Ellen "Angel Scribe"
Dawggone! Jim, Marion and Dawg are blessed with a praying cat.

TALES
 
"I have loved cats for 83 years!", declares Marion. "My parents were cat lovers who raised my brother and me along with the cats!

Tommy, Mother's big male tomcat, walked the six blocks to the grocery store with her.  But, rather than walking beside Mother on the sidewalk, Tommy proudly marched exclusively along his own 'purr-sonal' sidewalk--the curb's gutter--both to and from the store. Luckily for Tommy, they never encountered any dogs. I always wondered if Tommy went along as Mom's bodyguard, or just for an adventure.
 
My daughter, Karen, works at a construction company where they feed several feral cats behind the shop. The staff humanely trap the cats then have them neutered/spayed. A year ago, a 'new' arrival promptly delivered four kittens inside the shop! She moved her kittens from place to place and one time accidentally dropped three of them down to a lower level where she was unable to retrieve them. Even though they suffered no injuries, the not-yet-weaned kittens screamed for 'Mama', so there went Karen and and a co-worker to the rescue. Karen adopted the male; I took Trixie and Dottie, the two females.  At that time, we were unaware of the appropriateness of Trixie's name: Trixie, you see, purr-forms the most precious 'trick-sy'!

I could not believe my eyes during her first purr-formance. Trixie wanted to go outside so she jumped onto my bed, made eye contact with me, then looked out the window, cat-speak for 'I want out!'. But before I had the chance to open the window for her, Trixie held her front paws up and out, then brought them together into 'praying position'.  We are not a particularly religious family, so it was a bit of a shock to discover we adopted a 'praying' cat!

Ever since, anytime Trixie wants something, she prays for it. She prays for food, or to sit in my lap. She won't just jump into my lap; she sits in front of me, brings her paws together, looks at me, then 'prays' for me to lift her into my lap. She is both talented and adorable!

Dottie purr-forms a unique 'trick', too: She refuses to drink water from anywhere except the bathroom faucet. She sits at our bathroom door until someone walks by then meows for us to follow her into the bathroom. The expectation is that the faucet will now be turned on for Dottie to drink from. We do, and she does!

Before moving to Oregon Jim and I lived on a country farm in Missouri. One day we arrived home to find a stray dog sitting in the middle of our driveway. For all intents and purposes, he looked like he was actually waiting for us to come home to let him into 'his' house! As we opened the car doors to climb out, DAWG climbed in!  Dawg was not microchipped, nor was he wearing a collar. We checked around to see if he belonged to anyone, but he didn't seem to. That was eight years ago, so obviously, he's here to stay. After trying several names on him, we discovered that he responded best to names ending in a 'long E', so 'Dawg' became 'Dawgee'. Here in Oregon we live next to Karen and her family, sharing seven acres. As they own five cats, Dawgee is used to felines so he just ignored the new kittens we brought home.

Some people think cats are just another animal, but just like humans, they all have different purr-sonalities. Trixie not only prays, she burrows, too. She loves to be underneath the covers, purring away. Dottie, on the other hand, couldn't care less. You would never know they're from the same litter. Purr-sonality-wise, the same is true for every cat that has graced my home over the years--all unique."

TIPS

"Once a stray cat found her way to our farm," said Marion. "Miss Pitty Tatt walked right into our home, checked out the entire house, then jumped up into a chair to take a cat nap. I phoned everyone I knew, but no one claimed her as theirs. She was such a lovely cat; of all the cats I have ever loved, Miss Pitty Tatt was my favorite. I could never fathom why anyone would drive her out into the country to "garbage dump" her, but someone did.

After the big economic crash hit, many people dumped their cats and dogs. I guess they mistakenly reasoned that their domesticated pets would survive in the wild.  Wrong; they don't! I have seen the results of this 'freedom'. Most starve to death. Just as Miss Pitty Tatt was not fit to survive in the wild, neither are your pets. God gave them to us to love, cherish, and pamper; this is all they know and deserve."

Do not dump unwanted pets! It is more humane to take them to a no-kill shelter where they have a chance to be adopted by someone who will love, care for, appreciate, and create memories with them."

Adopt your next pet from a shelter: As of this July, www.PetFinder.com's adoption list includes 169,485 homeless cats, an increase of 5000 since June, (not including any newborn kittens); and, 187,740 dogs, an increase of 2100 since June. Visit the site for a photo and description of your new fur baby.
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