The Guardian and Trainie

The Guardian and Trainie
Nick and Babe

Friday, January 22, 2010

Another day on the planet

Well what shall we talk about today?  The cat I have who is 20 years old.  I haven't given her the time of day here and I think it is about time I do.  This cat of mine our family has had since we found her and her mother with 4 other kittens in our black berry bushes in 1990.  She was a cute kitten and we decided to keep her.  We found homes for all of the other kittens and the mother.  This little kitten we named Kali Ann after a doll I was making at the time.  Kali as we have always called her was raised with a ferral mother, so Kali's defense mechanisms are a bit on the wild side to say the least.  I think that this is why she has lived so long.  This is my guess.  I did have a vet that thought that this wildness could be related to why she has lived so long.  Who knows for sure.  The fact is that she is still alive and doing quite well I might add to my chagrin.  Kali started out belonging to my middle daughter.  Kali was her cat but when my daughter moved away from home I inherited the cat.  I was fine with the arrangement because I would never want to give away any of our animals.  So with me Kali has stayed.  Now I personally have never liked the cat because she has always been too rough.  No matter what you do to reprimand her she still will use her claws too much and she used to attack when petted.  I hated her.  She hurt me and I did not like it!!!  She would draw blood regularly.  I eventually learned how to deal with her grabbing me and that was to just not pull away.  Well you are still getting her claws dug into your skin, hurting and drawing blood.  I just got to a point where I stopped petting her.  Now I will add here that she has moved everywhere with me and I have had other cats and she is the only one who has stuck around.  I have to give her something there.  She also grew up with our family dog, Alaska.  They were a formidable team.  They protected the property together where ever we lived.  I remember once that Kali was in a stand off with a stray cat and she was holding her own but little did she realize that Alaska was standing behind her but the cat she was in a stand off with knew.  The stray was not going to make a move to attack Kali with a big dog backing her up.  The stray ran off and Kali was proud.  She acted like she took care of things all by her self.  I know that Alaska had a paw in it all but who's going to tell Kali.  It was like that between them.  The dog respected the cat and visa versa.  Ali lived for 12 years and I had to put her down.  Kali on the other hand continued to guard the perimeter of our yards for many years.  She finally did get to the point where she was just not as fast as she used to be and got bit one time and that was the end of her being the guardian cat.  It was now her time to pass over the responsibility to one of the other pets.  Over the years Kali did have to share the family with other pets, both cats and dogs.  She never bonded with any of them like she did with Alaska or Ali as we called her.  Kali has always been the "Queen".  "She who must be obeyed".  She never got cozy with any one of the other animals we had.  It was always she who must be obeyed!!!  However I did have the pleasant experience of observing her teach a couple of the kittens that my youngest daughter adopted.  I was at the front of the house where there are big windows where one could watch the goings on in the yard with out being seen.  I heard an unusual cat cry or sound.  One that I do not remember hearing before.  I looked outside and saw Kali sitting just outside our front door with a live mouse trapped beneath her paws and she was meowing in this deep guttural sound.   I had never heard her do this before and I was wondering what she was doing when I noticed the two kittens come running up to her.  She had been calling them.  For right when they arrived she released the mouse and let them play with it.  She was doing what comes naturally, teaching the kittens about mousing.  Kali was turning over the responsibility of catching the mice to the youngsters.   For I do believe that she never caught another mouse, lizard or snake after that.  She had earned her keep all the past years and it was now somebody else's turn.  Kali is a hearty cat not too big as cats go she only weighs 9 lbs but she has pushed her weight around.  When Ali was alive I remember that Kali would go to rub up against Ali and Ali would stand stiff and still as a board for there were many times that Kali would box Alaska for no good apparent reason.   Ali knew better than confront Kali.  She was like an accident waiting to happen and no one wanted to be involved not even the dog.  Kali moved everywhere with us.  She has lived in Folsom, California where she was born, in Grass Valley where she would walk down to the river with us.  She lived in Point Arena on coast of Mendocino.  She has lived in the "Million Dollar Valley" in Geyserville and she currently lives in Cloverdale on a 300 acre ranch.  She has lived a full life and I frequently wonder when her life will end.  I have never had a cat live so long.  She still acts like a kitten now and then.  It's kind of weird.  She really hasn't shown many signs of aging.  She doesn't really see quite as well but she moves around just fine.   She used to have more black fur and now she has a lot of gray in her fur.  She doesn't retract her claws as well and she has this horrible habit of barfing.  I have had her to the vet and he says she is doing unusually well for a cat her age and he even asked me if I really knew how old she was!  As if!!!   For he couldn't believe she was that old.  She doesn't get shots anymore because she doesn't really go anywhere.  She is content to stay around the immediate perimeter of the house or just stay inside.  Right now she is planted right in front of the fire place.  In the winter that is where she likes to be.  In the summer she prefers to be outside baking in the heat.  Well so much for now.  I have other things to tend to.  See you all tomorrow.  Peace

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