Her tail used to be longer….
Our house in the middle of the woods was always being visited by critters. When
we moved in the bats had a welcome home party for us. The bat guy removed over
100 from the “attic” space. Then there were the flying squirrels who are not
only nocturnal but also very friendly. It was known as the “snake house” before
we got there. Skunks, raccoons, deer, owls, coy dogs and turkey. The house was
what you would describe as something out of Deliverance. We even had our first
encounter with a ferrel cat.
I had no idea there was such a thing as a ferrel cat. That is a wild cat that
looks like a regular cat but surprise! it is actually a wild animal. FYI never
try to pet a ferrel cat if you like having hands. We had one that was living on
our back deck. Our dog Killian made friends with this cat. Killy would lay on
the inside of the window and the cat would lay on the outside. It was really
cute. Until the day I decided that the cat should come inside.
He had ventured close to the door. I had been feeding him and he was so pretty.
He was becoming friendlier and it was getting really cold outside. So, I slide
open the door and pet him for a bit,that went well so, I bend down and pick him
up. He is doing ok, crawls up to my shoulders, purring.I was so innocent. I
bring him in the house and the cat attacks me. Clawing, biting and hissing. A
ball of deadly fur. Killian tries to play, he thinks this is great fun now that
his friend is in the house. Poor Killy soon realizes that his friend is an
asshole, puts his tail between his legs and runs crying from the room. The cat
takes off further into the house. I grab the kid and barricade us in the
bathroom. I am being held hostage in my own home by a cat. The funny thing is
this isn’t the last time in my life that this will happen to me. After a few
hours, we get the cat out of the house and he never comes back.
A few years later, after shooting bb guns at bats and coaxing flying squirrels
out bedroom windows and trapping snakes in hallways I decide that it is time for
a real cat. Spence and Emma had joined us in the wooded habitat for humanity but
they were absolutely useless when it came to critters in the house. They were
only interested in critters outside the house. A bat swooping at my head while I
screamed like a B movie star simply made them giggle. A mouse running across the
floor might make them lift their heads, but only for a split second.We needed a
And with serendipity a cat was delivered. A student of mine came to the studio
with a box full of kittens!! I picked up the grey tiger and she nibbled my ear.
I so missed having a kitten. She was mine!! I brought her home and promptly got
pregnant so no kitty litter duty for me!!
Cecelia was a strange kitten from day one. Very loud, but so very beautiful and
the softest fur. She and the dogs didn’t care about each other. She was growing
nicely and then she went into heat. This is when she started getting really
Whenever a man would speak, she would meow loudly and back her hind end up in
the direction of him. It was crazy. Who ever had heard of a cat turned on by the
sound of a man’s voice?. And she started getting really mean with me and the
kids. So, off she goes to the vet for her operation. This was the first clue we
had that she was not a “normal” cat. The show she put on at the vet’s was
incredible. I have had cats all my life, even mean cats, but this level of
insanity was beyond my experience…..except for the ferrel cat, hhmmmmm.
She started acting out all the time. Hiding and yelling at us from behind
furniture. The kids were scared of her. She would do guerrilla attacks on them,
hiding and then scratching them as they walked by. No one was immune from
Cecelia and her moods. She would be so sweet and curl up on my lap and then as I
was petting her, she would twist her body around and scream and claw me and then
run.Doesn’t make for a trusting relationship. Lulling me into a sense of
security and peace and then WHAM fur ball from hell. I was genuinely scared of
But she could snatch a bat in mid flight and she ate mice whole, leaving just
the tail. She would play with a snake until it was curled into a ball
motionless. Bugs were an appetizer. This cat was a hunter the likes of which I
had never encountered. And so she has a permanent home with me.
She became so insane that she chewed part of her own tail off. She is neurotic.
She gets into a mood where she licks herself bald. And did I mention she is
mean? But I don’t give up. I take her to the vet, again, this is a bad idea. The
vet suggests Prozac. Yes, I am one of those people who put their cat on Prozac.
It made no difference whatsoever. None. I contemplated taking the Prozac myself.
Instead I start paying very close attention to what sets her off. I study her
moods and try to correlate them to the moon, the seasons or some other crap.
There is no correlation, she is just insane.
When I was in the process of moving from the house in the woods to the house in
the village, I left her for a few weeks in the house in the woods all by
herself. I would stop by daily to feed her, although she had taken down a huge
bird and dragged it inside so she was pretty self sufficient. She was happier
than I had ever seen her. All she wanted was the house to herself. She enjoyed
being alone. She was actually affectionate to me when I would stop by, her fur
grew back, she smiled and purred. Weirdo.
But really, a cat cannot own a house and live there all alone. I couldn’t
justify keeping a whole house just for the cat. Prozac yes, a house? No. Getting
her to my new house was quite the challenge. It took me 3 days, 2 boxes, duct
tape and a trip to the ER for some stitches, but I did it. I got that ball of
mad fur to my new house. She didn’t forgive me very quickly. It was about a year
before she would jump up on my lap and let me sit quietly, not moving or
breathing too loudly. She is so good to me.