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In The Company of Cats


Luna, a four year old snow Bengal arrived at my home with her tail half cocked, and her pupils as wide as saucers. She explored a little, but stuck close to her owners. I proffered my hand for her to sniff and she immediately drew back her head and hissed. Her owners were shocked, this was not the usual behaviour of their quirky, friendly cat.For the next couple of days Luna remained anxious, she continued to hiss at me, barely ate and rubbed her cheeks on everything, compulsively marking her territory. Making sure Luna had all that she needed, I gave her plenty of space. By day three the hissing had lessened and she was exploring more. She quickly learned to climb the kitty cloud (a specially designed platform bed) but Luna was nervous about descending the rather steep cat steps. I lifted her down and although she hissed at me gently, she also rubbed her face against mine. By the afternoon the hissing had stopped completely and she was eating well. Over the next few days I enjoyed getting to know Luna as she relaxed into her surroundings. She spent must of her time between the cat protected balcony or up on the kitty cloud, stopping for a head rub on her journey between the two.


I have been visiting Simba twice a day in his home while his owners travel. He is a young male tabby with light green eyes and fabulous whiskers. He loves company and is always at the front door when I arrive, eager to play. It’s been a sunny week so we usually head to the back garden that is surrounded by a thicket of tall black bamboo. This is a stroke of luck for Simba as bamboo is his favourite toy. I pick up a discarded stalk and swish it around the floor in front of me and Simba immediately leaps into action, chasing the bamboo around and my legs, jumping over my feet. He leaps on the end catching it under his large paws until he eventually breaks a piece off. Gathering it in his mouth Simba carries it to the foot of the large bamboo plants and guards it. We quickly develop a routine, first we play, then I give him a brush, cheeks are his particular favourite and he drops to the ground and purrs with pleasure. Then he follows me over to his bowl for breakfast.

When the hot weather inevitably gives way to rain we spend our evenings inside. Simba sits next to me on the floor or the sofa and with two paws on my leg, I stroke him while he steps over and around me, eventually settling into a curled up position on my lap.

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