Cats, Cats, and More Cats

As many of you have pointed out, I was spreading myself a bit too thin last summer, trying to do too many different things, and creating a lot of frustration for myself. Yep, I certainly was. What really pushed me over the edge, I think, was learning to draw animals… well, trying to draw animals, that is.

I tried. Really, I did. I have to accept the fact, though, that I’m just not good at drawing animals. Some I do better than others, and usually I can at least come up with a recognizable form, but for the most part my animals are laughable. Oh, well.

Shortly before I took my “summer break” — which extended through autumn and into winter — my husband, grandson Madox, and I all spent part of an afternoon attempting to draw cats. We’d found an easy-to-follow video on YouTube, so we grabbed paper, pencils, and my precious Prismacolor Premiers to see what we could do.

First, Madox made this fuzzy-looking brown cat:

Grandpa doesn’t consider himself an artist at all, but he was able to follow along and create this black and gray tabby:

My creation was only slightly better, but, of course, I’d had a bit of practice, not that it helped much:

 

Previous to this, I’d tried drawing several different cats — you might recall my post “Draw What You Know” which featured this feline:

 

One abject failure was this one — which I never posted:

There were more, but I’ll spare you the agony of seeing them — and spare myself the embarrassment of sharing them.

Instead I’ll share a few pictures of our cats — now plural.

You probably remember Flower Child, our rescue from Help Humane. She’s beautiful, still the queen of the house, and we still adore her.

 

Flower is no longer an “only child”. She now has a “little brother” — and sorry to say, she’s not too happy about it.

I’m not sure if I have ever mentioned “Fluffball” here, or any of the other strays roaming the neighborhood. There were three tomcats who prowl around. We called them Tom-Tom, Mr. Gray, and Fluffball. They had their own hierarchy. Tom-Tom was the undisputed leader. When they came around, he ate first. Once he’d finished, Mr. Gray was allowed to step up to the bowl. Poor Fluffball was third in line, and worse still, before he could even reach the plate the other toms were chasing him away. They fought viciously against him. The poor fellow was afraid to even try to approach the house.

The funny thing is that Flower Child became friends with Mr. Gray. He was her devoted protector, watching over her as she played in her pen, going after her to bring her home when she got loose, playing with her, eating with her, sleeping close to her. I have dozens of pictures of the two of them together. I won’t share all the pictures — just a very recent one. Here’s Queen Flower Child atop her tall tower with her dear Mr. Gray on guard.

What you can’t see in this picture is the third cat. He’s on the floor… which is the reason why Flower climbed to the top of the tower. She hates him!

That third cat … well, let me explain that once Flower Child choose Mr. Gray as her “consort”. he became the “top cat” with Tom-Tom moving down a rank. He’s a gorgeous fellow, but Flower wasn’t impressed. Here’s Tom-Tom checking out our Halloween decorations last fall.


I know I said I wasn’t going to share all my pictures of Flower and Mr. Gray, but I can’t resist sharing one more. Here they are together basking in the sun. Flower is in her “cat pen” and Mr. Gray — as always — is keeping guard.

So, as I said, Mr. Gray became the head honcho, Tom-Tom was next in line, and poor Fluffball was getting beaten up on almost every day. Soon Flower and Gray teamed up to chase Tom-Tom away — but gorgeous cat that he is, he’s apparently found a home. We still see him occasionally, but he no longer visits regularly.

For several weeks we saw nothing of Fluffball. Having broken up several cat fights where he was getting the worst of it, we truly believed he was dead. But then one rainy August afternoon my husband was working in the garage and heard a pitiful meow. It was Fluffball — alive, but barely so. I’ve never seen a cat so emaciated. He was a skeleton with a thin layer of skin over his bones.

This photo isn’t very good, but you can get an idea of how he looked:

For a couple weeks, he stayed in the garage — safe from the other tomcats. One day he followed my husband to the house and decided he’d like to be a housecat. Meanwhile, my husband felt that the boy needed a more masculine name, so Fluffball became Buddy Boy.

Want to see what he looks like today?

He is a beautiful cat, and the most loving cat I’ve ever seen. His right ear is broken, but even so, he’s beautiful.

Flower Child hates him. She’s terrified of him, in fact. And, actually, Mr. Gray is afraid of him, too. Buddy has been to the vet. He’s now neutered, and he’s not the least aggressive. Hopefully, in time, all three cats will get along without hissing, growling, running or hiding.

So, you see, this is one of the changes that’s taken place in our home since I went on break last summer, and yes, having two full-time cats, a regular stray, and a few other “part-time” visitors does keep us busy.

And Buddy Boy has just jumped up on my lap. Guess it’s about time for his dinner.

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