This week has really been a test of my resolve to take things in stride. My workweek was so incredibly busy that I was exhausted at the end of every day. Normally, I would try to do some small things at home after work, but it was not possible this week; and being tired was only a part of the reason why.
Recently, it has been on my mind to try to preserve the way of life around the farm where my animals are concerned. We have a unique collection of cats and dogs that all get along very well.
Two of my cats actually like the dogs, and will hang out with them. The short-tailed, long haired, torteshell cat, Malibu, has a particular affinity for our Belgian sheepdog, Hannah. Malibu will rub herself around Hannah’s face when she is lying down. They can also be found sitting together in the yard late at night, watching over everything.
Smudge, my black, one eyed barn cat, just seems to like dogs in general and can be found snoozing with them in the sun. Smudge, along with his sister, Coral, understands just how valuable a warm dog is in the winter. Every night in the winter Hank has Smudge and Coral sleeping on top of him or next to him. Beau looks like he wants to snuggle too but just can’t get over his general distrust of dogs.
Because the majority of my cats are seniors, I thought it would be a good idea to get some kittens who could learn from the wise farm cats. So, last Saturday I got three kittens who were 12 weeks old. We got them from a rescue agency call Parker Paws, so I feel especially good about providing them a good home. Apparently, they ended up at the local animal shelter when they were only about 4 weeks old (there were 6 kittens total). It breaks my heart to think of the rough start they had in life.
These three babies appear to have been well taken care of by the foster home they were in. They are not afraid of people, and like to be held. We chose to rename them all, though. The smallest is Eli; he definitely looks like he is the runt of the litter. But of course, he has the biggest personality! He is solid black with 2 very small white spots on his belly. Samuel is the biggest of the three, and is black and white. He is marked in what is called a tuxedo pattern. His look is complete with a white goatee. Bartholomew is also a tuxedo cat; he is practically Samuel’s twin. Bart has slightly less white and a smaller goatee.
Before we introduce these babies to the farm, they will live strictly in the house to ensure proper bonding. Also, they need to be old enough to recognize dangers such as hawks, and be able to climb trees to escape.
I have had indoor cats most of my life, and I am very familiar with the prevalence of cat hair on everything. So over the last few years I have started training all my cats to stay off of the furniture, and especially the kitchen table and counters. Many people believe that cats are not trainable. That is simply not true; all you have to do is to find the right motivation.
All of my farm cats come and go from the house, especially in the winter. I do not keep a litter box ready for them, and they know to ask to go outside. They all know the house rules, too. Of course it takes time and persistence to train a cat, but they are smart and will comply.
Babies are so rambunctious and “forget” the rules frequently, so they require a lot of supervision. Needless to say, we don’t get much else done when they are playing hard. Hence, I am getting farther and farther behind on my chores. So if anyone is to blame for this, it would of course be me.
I really don’t have any right to fret too much about being behind. And these kitties are going to be in the house full time for at least another 3 weeks. They get their first field trip to the great outdoors on Sunday. It should be fun!
I hope you have a great weekend and next week.
Proverbs 20:11 Even children are known by the way they act, whether their conduct is pure, and whether it is right.