This post is long overdue but has been sitting in draft form in both my drafts folder, my head and my heart.
Not everyone likes cats. In fact, some people say that you are either a dog or a cat person but I’ve met plenty of people who like both. I like both… although I’m funny about cats. I don’t like ALL cats. I tend to only like the ones where I know where they’ve been and who they belong to.
But there was a very special cat in my life. A cat who has recently passed away after a long and happy life full of adventure in both the city and the country. A cat who never knew he was a cat, or pretended not to.
Playdoh was an awesome cat. Not mine, although I did have the extreme good fortune to live with him for a number of years and we developed a very close bond. Playdoh was my sister’s cat, but a cat I considered my own.
He was gorgeous. And HUGE. He was a kitten that came off a farm and he certainly had an interesting life. The first half of his life he spent in the city of Newcastle in Australia and it was here that he and I became friends. He was a city cat and it was amazing he never got ran over because we lived on a relatively busy street, not far off a busy road and he always liked to be out and about.
He had so many cute little habits but the thing that made him special really was that he was such a lover. He was so snuggly and cuddly…not one of those stand-offish cats. And he used to do this very cute thing where he’d walk up and head butt you so you knew he wanted some love or so he could tell you he loved you.
He also had some not so cute habits… he liked to catch mice and rats from around the city and bring them home to ‘share’ them with us (not the nicest thing in the world).
Playdoh wasn’t allowed to sleep in the house all night, but I used to let him anyway. He always knew how to wake me up when he needed to go out, so I used to cave in, not wanting to disturb him and let him stay for as long as he wanted. He was most definitely the boss. But he was a bed hog, despite being only about an eighth of my size and always had me off in a tiny corner of the bed. It’s funny that a cat could be such a ruler of space and I often wondered why the hell I was putting up with it but he had right of way and I couldn’t help but spoil him.He also used to ‘spoon’… he’d lie next to you and put his paw over you almost like he was cuddling you. And even more, he loved to be under the covers.
He wasn’t a fan of being moved out of his comfort zone once he’d found it and if you did, he would often get up and sit with his back to you and stare at the wall. We were confident he was giving us the ‘silent treatment’ as a way of pointing out just how put out he was.
He also used to trick us into thinking he hadn’t been fed. There were three of us in the house, myself, my sister and her partner and after a couple of weeks we’d noticed he started to get a little fat. He had this way of crying for food as if he’d NEVER been fed before and he knew exactly how to look at us with those big sad eyes and communicate that the other humans hadn’t fed him (apparently). It took us a while to realise he was being fed 6 times a day as opposed to his 2 that he was meant to – but we quickly put a stop to that.
He then moved with them out to the country and spent the rest of his days on a farm where he had to get used to not being the only pet in the house anymore… with the introduction of dogs, horses, cows and various other animals along the way, he still managed to make sure that it was well established he was King in that house. The dogs were afraid of him until they were completely submissive toward him and he pretty much always took their beds. He got fed first, he got cuddle preference, pride of place on any bed or couch (even before us) and he definitely was the boss!
I loved that about him.
He certainly was special. He won the hearts of everyone who came into contact with him, even those who don’t normally like cats. He never bit, scratched, hissed or was aggressive in any way and he was, as I said before, just a big lover. Even C, who has had a life-long fear of cats, had him on his lap within about 10mins of knowing him and wasn’t prepared to move for fear of disturbing him and ruining what was quite clearly a very contented moment.
This cat knew how to be a part of that very special family and he is very much missed.