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Life in a Cathouse

Posted on Friday, October 12, 2018 at 10:34 am

his is the final installment of Life In A Cathouse. No, nothing has happened to the cats. They are doing just fine.

I have retired from the paper and it’s time for me to stay home with the cats, where we can all keep each other company.

I’ve enjoyed telling cat tales through the years and many of you have said you’ve enjoyed reading about them. Many of you have also taken time to tell me about your cats and their antics. When cat people get together the subject of conversation is almost sure to turn to their cats before long.

I began writing this column years ago after I sometimes mentioned the cats in the regular columns I wrote for the opinion page in the paper. There was always a reader response when I did and it was enough to make me think the cats deserved their own space once a week. Not long after Life In A Cathouse became a regular feature I realized I was right. Response to the cat columns has been greater than that I received from the regular columns.

Long time readers have been with me through the ups and downs of the cats I’ve lived with. You read about the arrival of Ozrow after my wife, Vivian, rescued him from the middle of a bridge on a busy highway. He was too weak to stand up and we thought he’d probably die, but he grew into a healthy, active cat. He is old now and doesn’t do much but he is still very much the same in his personality.

You read about Amelia Jane, the cat that had her life as Ozrow’s housemate decided before she was even born. I told you about the troubles we had teaching her to drink and how she developed a weird fondness for human feet. Both of them are still around and doing well.

We lost some cats through the years and you responded when they died. There was old Foo Foo who showed up on the porch when she was a kitten. She had lost an eye somehow but didn’t seem to let it bother her. She lived a long life and ruled as queen of the house. There was Skittles, who was adopted when she was a kitten born in town after her mother was run over and killed by a car. Spanky and Ophelia both came to us as older cats that outlived their anticipated lifespan by years. They were both big white and black cats, but had distinct personalities. Spanky would only drink from a running faucet while Ophelia acted like she was upper crust all the way.

I’ve appreciated all the cards, letters and phone calls I’ve received about the cats. Some readers have even sent cat toys for me to take home for the cats to play with. I have had hundreds of cards with cat pictures on them and those always made me smile.

I have had people call me occasionally to ask for advice about their cats. I was never much help because I am not an expert. I am just a guy who likes living with cats and writing about the crazy things they do. As all cat people know, you can never tell what a cat will do next and at times what they do is totally unexpected.

There is not much else to say except thanks to everyone who has read my cat tales. Now it’s time for me to spend more time with them and see what happens next.