Sunday, April 30, 2017
My Visitor: Daisy Cat
It has been weeks since my elderly cat Daisy abandoned the house in favor of living on the screen porch.
I know my cat. We've been together for nearly 14 years. Daisy was a young adult when I became the fourth and final person to adopt her from the local animal shelter--no one else could stand her, and for good reason. When Daisy makes a decision, that is IT. She is exceptionally stubborn. So when she moved to the porch, I didn't try to force her to do otherwise; I just tried to help her make the transition by making sure she had a proper litter box, regular meals, and lots of fresh water. When the weather was cold at night, I took her one of my fleece jackets for comfort.
All I could do was let Daisy make her own choice. And she refused utterly to stay in the house. She became dreadfully upset when I brought her in, so I let her stay out.
This afternoon, however, has been a different matter because I thought she actually needed to be inside the house. There has been a strong weather front moving through: high winds, heavy rain, thunder and lightning, with a Tornado Watch thrown in for good measure. Although Daisy hates wind, she's been tolerating it. And she has coped with the rain. The thunder and lightning were something else altogether. When I knew that the strongest part of the storm was about to move through, I sat at the dining room table playing Mensch Argere Dich Nicht (read these two posts: Man, Don't Get Annoyed and Leaping Into the Pool of Grace) by myself so I could watch Daisy on the porch. I figured that the storm would overwhelm her, so I wanted to be ready to bring her into safety when it did.
And I was right: with the first strong cracks of thunder, she became alarmed and didn't know what to do. I brought her inside. She wanted out. I let her go. And I continued waiting. It was only a minute or two before she made a move toward the door but she felt unsure so I went out, brought her in, and dropped her on a chair where she has always liked to nap. She stayed there for a few minutes before she headed for the office--her favorite stomping grounds. I cracked open the window by the window seat I made for her (read Making a Place for Daisy). She was happy enough for a time. Now she's sitting on the floor behind me trying to avoid the bright flashes of lightning. And I'm just glad that she seems calm.
Daisy is feeling her years. Old cats aren't too different from elderly people--sometimes they make odd decisions or make strange demands. And that's just gotta be okay as long as it is safe but something else needs to happen when it isn't.
The nice thing was having my kitty visiting with me in the office today. Although I haven't admitted it to anyone (least of all to the cat herself), I've been missing her presence. My terrible cat is kinda nice to have around. I like her.
Life is good.
Even during a thunderstorm.