Slice of Life March Challenge Day 2
The pet to human ratio at our house just got even. My mother-in-law, two cats shy of Crazy Cat Lady status, passed away last month and left us with three. Two boys named Charles and Charlie, and a phantom cat named Clara that we’ve only heard about in legend. She was of the dust bunny variety – usually found cowering under a bed somewhere.
Immediately following her passing, the cats were left alone in her house with about 6 bowls, containing the different brands of cat foods they each supposedly preferred. It became clear to us early on that we needed to get the cats out of there as soon as possible. The boys were crazed for attention and we had not spotted Clara in days.
Our family has one dog and one cat. We were not able to take on 3 cats, and I feared that even taking one might upset the delicate balance. (In cat world, this is evidenced by someone peeing on the carpet.) But my daughter felt an affinity with Charlie, the half-tailed, buck toothed, chubby cat that was my mother-in-law’s favorite. So we packed him up and he became the guest in our guest room while we acclimated all the pets to their individual scents.
After a few days, we opened the door to let Charlie explore. He spent another two days without venturing out, and Jack, my faithful dog, took to guarding the door lest Charlie should change his mind. Thankful to have a small piece of her grandmother’s heart in the house, Allie spent quite a bit of time in there with Charlie, and he seemed very content.
It’s been a few weeks now and our blended pet family is doing pretty well. There are still some occasional skirmishes between the old cat and the new one, usually in the middle of the night. And because we’ve decided to let Charlie be the outdoor cat he has always longed to be, he occasionally finds some inhospitable neighbors. For some reason Charlie has twice been chased up a tree by the same dog that has been peacefully coexisting with him indoors for weeks now. (And said dog now sleeps guard at the end of my bed every night to be sure Charlie doesn’t try and usurp his rightful place as top dog.)
We worried that these run-ins might cause Charlie to make the trek back to my mother-in-law’s empty house, but Charlie always comes home. He purrs a lot, he scratches all the appropriate scratching devices, and someone is finally playing with the cat toys in the house. I’d say he’s blended beautifully.