Losing Dolly at the beginning of the year was absolutely devastating. However, I was also buoyed by the fact that we suddenly had space for a new cat in the house. What better way to help me through the mourning process than to have a new life keeping me company while Heather’s at work? And since her dream was always to have an orange tabby, I set about finding her the perfect kitten from the Humane Society back in January.
Kittens tend to go within a few hours of being put up for adoption, so at one point I was checking the website every hour for available candidates. When there happened to be a tiny male tabby at 14 weeks old on the other side of town, I drove over immediately and found him in a cage sleeping with his sister (a beautiful little calico). It broke my heart to split them up, but I also knew she’d soon be snatched up herself.
We settled on the name Percy, after Tiana’s cat who recently passed away1. His middle names are Leopold and Byron, after his golden doodle and feline brothers respectively.
It was amazing to discover how much personality was already in this little orange bundle of fur, even though he had been alive only a few weeks. As her first kitten, Heather’s had the chance to experience the magic of early childhood, like the way he learns the limits of his body (by having some spectacular falls), and the loss of his innocence2.
Certainly the most endearing habit he’s developed is hopping into my lap and grooming me when he feels like having a rub. His dry little tongue is rough as sandpaper, but I can’t resist giving him a spot to lick when thinking of myself as a person he cares about so much.
Now he’s approaching adulthood, and has yet to outgrow his youthful mischievousness. Especially difficult to deal with has been his chewing issues. I’ve had to make peace with the fact that I’ll never be able to keep cable mounted to my floorboard, cause he keeps pulling out the staples to use as toys.
Nine months later and we’re still grieving over Dolly. Some days, I wake up groggy and have the urge to cuddle with my favourite cat. Then I realize she’s gone forever and I turn into blubbering mess. Even though Percy is no replacement, he helps fill the hole she left.
Our plan is eventually to have three cats, but for now we’re basking in the glory that is a new kitten. A tiny little spirit who buoys our own.
- Percy was a special cat who once protected me from a moody little chihuahua who was about to bite me, by using a vicious serious of swipes. [↩]
- During his first visit to the vet, he was completely fearless; likely at an age where he still had full kitten trust, cause he would still be taken care of by his mother. [↩]