|Plum & Tugboat (LBF)|
The Sanctuary cats come to us from many different places and for different reasons – but the most common label on the cage of a newcomer is “inappropriate urination”. Sometimes there is a medical reason for it, sometimes it’s a stress reaction, but when cats come to us with that label, it’s generally because their owner has decided they can’t handle it any more. And a cat who is labelled as a pee-er is not going to last long at a shelter unless it’s a “no-kill” one – which is why we spend so much time mopping up pee!
Tugboat came to us with that label more than 10 years ago, already a mature cat. He’s now very much an elder statesman around the Sanctuary, dividing his time between the Tea Room, and the Double-Wide – currently he’s spending more time in the latter because it’s warmer. He’s a cat who has always been very needy of human attention; he loves to visit in the med-cage, and to receive cuddles.
He’s probably getting a little deaf, because the tone of his vocal demands has changed, as is characteristic in older cats. He’s no longer the dapper gentleman in a tuxedo; these days his shirtfront is a little stained and he needs a little valeting. Many of us make a point of visiting with Tuggy and sharing cuddles, or sitting with him on the couch when he’s feeling too comfy to move.
Plum is also a pee-er – but it’s totally not her fault! She’s been with us about four years, one of a series of Manx-Syndrome cats, whose physical makeup causes them to be incontinent. This sweet dilute calico seems to have an always-dirty bum, and is one of the cats who receives a daily bath – a ritual she does not enjoy, but has learned to tolerate. She has the characteristic rotund shape of a true manx, and bounces around like a little rabbit. She is wary (after all, you might pick her up and bathe her!) but friendly and affectionate when she feels safe.
Plum just adores Tugboat. Mostly he is tolerant of being adored – adoration by Plum comes with some pretty smelly consequences, after all. But if he tucks himself up on a Double-Wide shelf, sooner or later, Plum will find him and settle in. She’s less inclined to follow him out to the Tea Room, so he has to balance the advantages of staying warm with a smelly bed-buddy against a trek outside and a climb up to his basket on the countertop.
|Plum LOOOVES Tugboat (KN)|
Recently Tugboat was found having a conversation on the couch with Colin – Colin is very much a couch cat, and one who seems to have a radar for other cats who need comforting. Closer examination revealed that this was not a private conversation, but that a little lump of Plum could be found tucked under Tuggy.
|Tugboat on a Plum cushion
visiting with Colin (KN)
Sometimes he lies on her, more often she can be found lying on him. Heads snuggled close, there is obviously great affection between the two of them. Photographer Lisa caught them together, and offered a little bridal touch.
|Loving kisses…. (LBF)|
As cats and people age, it’s comforting to have someone there for you, to keep you in touch with the world and to let you know that you continue to be loved.