Monday, December 28, 2009

My Favorite Thing: Cats!

My secret is out: I am a cat lady. I love cats of all sizes, appearances and temperaments. In fact, on my daily walks around my neighborhood, it’s not unusual for them to peek out of driveways and bushes, to come rub against my ankles, purr and meow.

No surprise that one of my favorite books as a kid was 27 Cats Next Door by Anita Fleagles, about a crazy old cat lady. And yes, there are those who predict this to be my future!

In any case, this past fall has been particularly heartfelt for me for in addition to my 3 year-old Balinese, Rascal (named after the cocky football player in Top Ten Uses for an Unworn Prom Dress), the long-haired feral cat I call Ivy who shows up for meals, and the 2 year-old half-Bengal next door who comes in my cat door to play, snack and nap at will, we have a new cat: 4 month-old Ruby.

My friend and I found Ruby and her brother, Ranger, as tiny motherless kittens, immediately after the Station Fire which raged along the perimeter of our neighborhood, and took them in. We cared for them together, doing everything we could to bring them to the pictures of health.


When they were about three months old, with the blessing of our vet, we did a trial separation--Ruby with us, Ranger with them--agreeing if either kitten “freaked out,” we’d bring them back together permanently. But we were amazed by how quickly and how well they both adjusted to their new lives and families.


The true surprise, however, was how Rascal took to Ruby. He adores her, acts like an uncle, showing her how to climb trees and break into the cat food cabinet, playing with her, cleaning her, cuddling her, sleeping beside her...it’s astonishing, considering for the first three years of his life, he was a very spoiled “only child.” How was I to know, while saving her life, I was enriching his?


So in celebration of my love for cats on this Our Favorite Things Week, I am going to give away a truly wonderful young adult novel that I recently read by Wendy Mass that featured a kitten, Mango, as one of its main characters: A Mango Shaped Space.

All you need to do to enter is put the name of your pet in a comment. Or, if you don’t have a pet, you can use a friend’s pet’s name. Of course, more detailed comments about your own pets are always welcome, too! Enter as often as you’d like. The winner’s name will be chosen randomly and announced in my blog next Monday (when we talk about our new Bee)...

Tina

Tina Ferraro
Top Ten Uses for an Unworn Prom Dress
How to Hook a Hottie
The ABC’s of Kissing Boys
www.tinaferraro.com

21 comments:

Shannon McKelden said...

Aw, I love a fellow cat lover! I'm proud to be owned by Jack, Elli, Thor, and Ollie. :) I, too, had a similar situation, when Thor and Ollie were tiny tykes, a previous cat, Carmel, who had been the baby of the family for a while, took them under his wing. They would follow him around the yard, where he carefully stayed inside the fence as long as they were around. He taught them to hunt and to stalk and where to safely hide and how to use the cat door to come in and out. Funny how they are like that!

Loves my babies. :-)

Wendy Toliver said...

I have two dogs, Willow (a gorgeous mutt who looks like a cross between a fox and a German shepherd), a yellow lab named Danner (he was already named Dan so we tried to keep it similar as not to confuse him), and Zoey our black tabby cat. She's the newest addition to our family and she's a sweetheart. Here here for cat ppl!

YA Vampire Books said...

I'm a cat lover too! My current cat's name is Gosan. :)

Janie Emaus said...

I am currently without a pet, but I adore my parents' dog Chipper and I tolerate my daughter's boxer, Max. I must send off some kind of strange pheromones because just the smell of me sends Max into a barking frenzy.

half-baked christian said...

Awww i just rescued a kitten too, last May. He loves books just as much as i do cause he eats them. But Pooh Bear is my little man. He could get away with murder in his James Bond outfit. I love your post how the cats are getting along. Pooh just chases the girl cats cause they wont give him the time of day

Tera Lynn Childs said...

You are a cat lady! :-) Such a sweet story, Tina! And, while I'm exempt from the contest, you already know my puppy's name. DAISY!!!

Marjolein said...

Lovely cats! would love to have a cute cat, but I'm allergic. My sister had a dog, and his name was Dodger!

Kelsey said...

Great story, the kitten pictures are adorable :)

I have a seven month old golden retriever named Charlie, a seven year old fluffy gray cat named Mittens, and a 3 year old orange tabby named Tory :)

Tory and Mittens are both rescue cats!

Marley Gibson said...

Awwwwwwwwwwwww....I miss my kitties!!! Soon...soon I'll be a fur baby mommy again. = )

jpetroroy said...

I love my kitties, Randal and Layla

stephhale said...

So sweet, Tina, but I'm sneezing from IL. While I'm not in the contest, I can't help but brag about my friend's new teacup Yorkie named Bella (we all know what book this came from). She is so sweet!

Dona Sarkar-Mishra said...

While except, I'll share anyway. I love cat ladies and plan to be one as well! My kitty's name is Ashton (Ash) and he is the love of my life!

Llehn said...

My last pet was a Westie named Shane :D He was the cutest little thing too!

Anum said...

Can we name our deceased pets? I used to have a cockatail named Mituh. He was beautiful and sang way better than me. :)

kaymf said...

My cat's name is Peaches. I prefer cats to dogs but I love them both.

TinaFerraro said...

Thanks, everyone, and keep the comments coming all week!

And to answer Anum's question, yes, certainly we can mentioned our deceased pets. In fact, here's two of mine: J.T. and Ginger!

Anonymous said...

My dog is Max.

Ashley R.

Heather Davis said...

I soooo love those pictures of your furry kids together! That's awesome that Rascal took to Ruby so well. ;)

You know my kitty is Harper Lee!

Cara King said...

So good to hear that Rascal took to Ruby! I have two cats of my own -- Pippin and Sophie Hatter (because I'm a book geek as well as a cat geek!) -- and they're really sweet together...we got them both from the animal shelter when they were kittens and brought them up together.

Great of you to save two kittens after the fire, too, Tina! I bet their mom was a stray and died or got lost in the fire... Years ago, I lived in a house that had lots of strays around (my roommates put out cat food for strays, and we grew catnip in the yard) ;-) , and one day we found three kittens abandoned there (about 2 1/2 weeks old) and we were so happy we managed to keep them all alive. It's certainly a lot of work... But our older cats never liked any of them. :-( So I'm extra glad that your Rascal adopted Ruby!

Cara

TinaFerraro said...

Thanks for all these comments...it's great to hear about your pets and your friends pets! And FYI, This contest ends on Sunday night.

Megan said...

I have a cute little kitty named Felix. Curently me and my brother are trying to convince my dad to get another one.