I love dogs…I have loved them for as long as I can remember. I love cats. (I’m sure that came as a huge shock to everybody). I have had the world’s greatest dogs in my life and when I get to heaven (yeah, I’m sure) they’re all going to be waiting for me.
I’m not so sure about all the cats I’ve loved — cats wait for no one. If you want to tag along with them on their rambles then, you’d best hurry.
Right now our Mindy is on my heart. Mindy was one of those “not sure who her mama was, and her daddy was a traveling man” dogs.
What kind is she? She’s a dog. ‘Nuff said. She was black. She had long ears, one stands up, the other flops down. She grinned. Going on 10 years old, her muzzle was white with age and she showed signs of laziness those days.
She got us up each morning so she could be let out to walk around the property and see what strange creatures have been out during the night, nose to the ground and at a fast clip, when suddenly….that’s enough of that. (Now, I may have failed to mention that our Mindy was blind. I had her spayed when she was a puppy and she had a stroke during the surgery which rendered her sightless.)
Her eyes may be blind, but her nose had 20/20 vision. She can find her way with that nose like nobody’s business. One other odd thing about her is that cats loved her.
ALL cats. Loved her. When we moved here, we brought our cats with us, the cats that she knew loved her and thought not a thing about it. There were two cats who had apparently lived here before we came along, and were they afraid of Mindy? Oh, no, not a bit.
After we had been here a while, I noticed that the prior owner’s cats we now called Wonky and CC were following her. They were closely following her, and every so often, one of them would rub against her and throw himself down in front of her. Strange behavior for a cat, you might say. But it is exactly what my indoor cats do.
They would follow her, they “hugged” her for want of a better word. When they are wrapping themselves around her, purring loudly, it’s all I can say, they are hugging her. Whenever she is walking about, she always had at least one, usually two and at times five or six cats with her.
She is was greeted by Pinky Lee (he’s white with black spots and the pinkest nose you’ve ever seen.) Then Wonky (his ears are deformed) and CC (he’s a Maine Coon cat) would approach her and begin the ritual. Purr hug, purr hug, purr hug…and escort her to the yard.
When she gets into the yard, the rest of the mob runs to meet her. The kittens, George, Ociecat and Barney lead the pack, with Stranger bringing up the rear. Now, Stranger is one of the newer ones who showed up for supper one night and forgot his way home. (I have several who have that claim to fame.) This is the one cat that Mindy could lose her temper with. He is a stalker. And he is annoying.
Mindy Lou could not take a step without his escort. He would run ahead of her to wait for her. If she changed course, he changed course. Mindy once put in for an order of protection, but like most men, he walked right through it. I have stamped my foot at him, clapped my hands at him, everything short of throwing things at him (which I refuse to do…maybe I should turn the hose on him.)
Cries of “Hey, cat, leave the dog alone!” can be heard nearly every evening. You know, I would have thought this was just a fluke, but last year, Peanutbutter brought home a guest for dinner when she returned from one of her trips — she brought with her a lovely gray, wonky-earred Maine Coon.
At first, when I saw this gray furball wrapped around Mindy Lou, I thought it was OUR Wonky…then I noticed only one ear is deformed, and his coat is a darker gray than our own Wonk.
You know, I can almost hear the conversation between Peanutbutter and the new cat: “Don’t mind the big black cat, she’s had an identity crisis ever since she lost her eyesight. She thinks she’s a dog. Yeah, she’s blind, we’re her eyes.”
Sandi McBride is a resident of Jefferson who blogs regularly and enjoys her garden and her furry and feathered friends. She is a wife and mother of two sons.