14 May 2012

Three

Hi, Pam here.

Three is more than two.  Of course it is.  But sometimes a girl needs a practical demonstration before she makes a life altering decision for herself, her man, and some kitty cats.  We're keeping an eye on our neighbor's kitties this weekend and the next.  She has three. 

The older two are about 8 years old, both male, and she's had them from kittens.  They came together, although they are not litter mates.  The one is fiercely independent.  His name is Lindy.  He spends afternoons outside, but he never roams very far.  He likes Travis, and they seem to have an understanding between them.  Lindy isn't quite so sure about me, so I've learned to let him come to me or not as he chooses.

The other is Rudy, and I think of him as a special needs kitty.  He has long hair that needs brushing, and a mushed face with weepy eyes.  And he's a snuggle boy who needs lots of cuddling.  This morning when we went next door to do the morning chores, he was the first one to greet us.  After he had his breakfast, he came right to me to get his eyes cleaned and his hair brushed smooth, and then sit for some snuggles.  Rudy has the sweetest purr.  It's very soothing.

But there are three.  Little Miss JoJo is just about a year old.  She joined the family next door last April.  She's a real kitten!  Loves to play and roll around.  She takes on Lindy, who has about 5lbs on her and really doesn't want to be bothered.  He smacks her and gives her hisses, but she just comes back for more.  She's also quite the chatterbox.  Travis has conversations with her, like he used to do with Mr Tucker.  In fact, Miss JoJo has markings very similar to Mr Tucker, although she is quite petite.

I know what it will take to keep multiple cats.  When the country gentlemen visited here, we had three...Mr Bailey, Mr Newby, and Mr Tucker.  And when we watch our neighbor's kitties, there are three.  It's extra food and litter, and a lot more work to make sure all three get the attention they want and need.  Plus extra trips to the vet to keep them all healthy and happy.

They seem to each decide what they want from you.  Then it's your job to be what they want.  But, with three, I think there's another piece of the puzzle.  I watch Lindy and I wonder if he's trying to get just a little more of the attention the other two demand, but he's not sure how to ask for it.  So it seems important to be in sync with each personality, understand when one might be feeling left out, then figure out how to fix that.

Maybe Lindy isn't so aloof as he seems.  Travis says he often walks right up to him outside, and they have a few minutes of head buts and discussion. 

I don't know how my neighbor does it by herself with three. 

5 comments:

  1. It is hard. And a lot of work. And a lot of money. Since December, between Whitey getting so, so sick and the other 3 all needing their annuals and Gandalf needing surgery for a diseased tooth extraction and cleaning, I've easily spent close to $4,000 on them. And they get more expensive as they age.

    Before my cats, I had dogs for about 35 years. End of life care, depending on the particular health situation and treatments available and chosen, each of my last 2 dogs also cost me thousands. And that's not even mentioning the heartbreak and grief over losing them.

    Would I do it again? Obviously!

    However, the monetary expense is an important consideration to be aware of and prepare for. It makes me nuts when I see signs that say "Free kittens" or "Free puppies", because of course, there is no such thing!

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  2. Having three cats has got to be very similar to having three children of the human variety as it always seems like there's one - similar to Lindy - who seems rather like "the odd man out" as it were because the other two are perhaps getting more attention while he roams the yard and tries to act aloof and like he doesn't care. Do cats also suffer from "middle child syndrome"? Was Lindy always like that or simply since little Miss JoJo came to live with them?

    I've often thought that it would be too easy to be lost in a crowd of three.

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  3. Enjoy your babysitting!

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  4. Hey, Pam. I love how intuative you both are even with your neighbor's cats. I have three cats and each one is unique and different. We have two older cats around fourteen years of age and a younger siamese which is about one and a half years old. I'm dreading the day when my two old felines go to the rainbow bridge. Not all cats are head butters. I had an orange stiped cat that was the best at head butting. That is just one of the many things I adore about cats.

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  5. I could not care for one. I don't know how you do it! Kudos to both of you. Lucky cats they are.

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Always interested in your thoughts or ideas.