Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Tooth(less) & Claw

We've had Tina for a couple of years now, since picking her up from a cats and dogs home in Bath. My wife saw Tina's picture on their website and showed me. Even though Tina had presented herself as a glowering, feline bruiser, we were immediately certain that she was the cat for us. Her history is the inevitable tale of woe: evidently mistreated as a kitten, Tina was either abandoned or ran away, before being found and taken in by the cats' home. With no positive experiences, we quickly realised that she wasn't anti-social, just terrified of human contact. After a few abortive attempts to foster her, Tina had clocked up over a year in the home and things weren't looking good.

A couple of years later, living with us, and Tina's not what may be considered 'normal' but has made incredible progress. We had intended to change Tina's name when we adopted her, but we couldn't think of a suitable alternative and, besides, she's kind of grown into it now. Not that Tina ever responds to being called by name, of course: the only sounds that make her perk up are tin cans or biscuit cartons being opened...! On top of this, Tina still won't leave the house or let us handle her (which makes a trip to the vet a fun experience). She also has no interest in mainstream cat toys, but seems to get endless enjoyment from chasing a ping pong ball around the room. Our furnishings often suffer... It might seem a bit weird, but Tina's very content with her hassle-free life.

Of course, sometimes the real world has to interrupt Tina's daily routine of sleeping, eating, destroying furniture... and more sleeping. A recent visit to the vet to clear up some gingivitis resulted in her returning home with all but three of her teeth removed. Seems likely that Tina picked up a virus before she was rescued by the cats' home and, at the age of 4 (that's a guess), she's now got less bite than a cat twice her age. Not that this has proved any obstacle to eating, of course. The vet warned us - as they have done on every previous visit - that Tina may stay off food for a couple of days due to shock, etc. On this occasion, it was something like two hours. That's one routine that nothing will break...

What's that scratching at the door? Oh shit, I've missed serving time again...
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Blogger Atom Boy said...

Hi Bro'

I think this is the first time I7ve seen pictures of Tina, she's a beautiful cat.

It's a shame she still won't come to you, though. She must have been badly mistreated.

I think I told you about the stray cat that I've been feeding since she was born. She won't go near strangers but she'll let me play with her, and she's even started coming in the house to have a nose around when she knows the dogs aren't around. Not that she's scared of them. She's given Steve a clip around the ear a couple of times and often sits outside our glass front door just to tease him!

Anyway, she had a couple of really cute little kittens last month. She will let me pick them up but it's amazing how they are born with a fear of people. As soon as they see me their hair stands on end and they start hissing! Fortunately, they still small enough that they can't really do anything about me picking them up! I'm trying to get them used to me before they are big enough to take chunks out of my fingers!

9:20 am  

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