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In The Company of Cats

Smokie and Oreo

Oreo and Smokie race to get to the bed first, with me following behind, pyjamas on and iPad in hand. The winner of the race claims the pillow. Usually it’s Smokie the older, smaller female clad in a beautiful soft grey coat. Whom ever claims the coveted place, goes to sleep on the pillow next to me. But when I wake up in the morning it’s always Oreo the tuxedo wearing kitten that is curled up beside me. Nestled between my shoulder and neck the little ball of fur and I fit perfectly on the pillow and he stays there to do his morning ablutions, resting on one paw while expertly licking the other clean. It’s usually his fabulous whiskers that wake me as he goes about his morning routine whilst still tucked into my neck.

Tickled awake by Oreos whiskers, I turn the light on whilst it’s still dark to start my day. Oreo immediately jumps off the bed and heads to the kitchen for breakfast. Smokie, spotting his advantage from his place under the bed hops up for a morning cuddle and we spend an extra fifteen minutes snoozing. Oreo realising he has been duped by the older and wiser Smokie, returns and watches from the foot of the bed, barely concealing his annoyance.

Smokie, a gentle creature has had some adjusting to do since the unstoppable ball of energy that is Oreo moved in, claiming his favourite pillow and the hearts of Smokies family. Of course they still adore Smokie and have done everything possible to make the transition from a one cat to two cat household go smoothly. Whilst Smokie has accepted Oreo he still relishes time alone, Oreo is oblivious to Smokies sacrifice and being a kitten, of course, has no concept of personal space. He charges into a sleeping Smokie, rubbing his whole body from head to tail underneath his chin and nips into his favourite sunny spot when he rolls over.

Oreo, named after the famous black and white cookie, is constantly on the move. He is all instinct with an underdeveloped sense of caution. He jumps before thinking and will land on your tray whilst you are eating, a tiny uninvited furry guest with his face in your dinner. He can be picked up and returned to the floor with one hand but, within seconds will land back on your tray. His curiosity and fearlessness has seen him jump straight into a filled up bath tub. Scooped up and wrapped in a towel to dry it isn’t long before Oreo wriggles free and is soon getting into mischief again.

Luckily for Smokie, Oreo like most kittens expends a lot of energy and then falls fast asleep. Smokie, as if sensing the calm that comes with a sleepy Oreo, will appear from her favourite spot under a chair on the rug and hop onto the sofa next to me. With front legs outstretched and two paws like little fists on my lap, Smokie will knead them gently into my thighs over and over again purring with delight.

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