Earlier this year I predicted – correctly, as it sadly turned out – that this would be a year in which we lost three of our pets. Toby left us in August and we had to help Velvet pass on the day after Thanksgiving. It's been really, really hard.
We are now down to four cats, which I realize sounds like a lot, but not when you'd once gotten used to having seven pets running around. Kaylee still lives up in the recording studio/TV room by herself, and we have Xena, Dr. Jones and Trillian in the main part of the house.
Xena and Kaylee are my husband's kitty wives. Xena will sit on my lap while I'm on my laptop, but it's mostly because she wants to be ready to steal my chair when I get up.
Dr. Jones is everyone's buddy and he's always up for some petting or a game of fetch, but he spends most of his time guarding the kitchen against mice and lying on the floor vents to keep warm.
Surprisingly, Trillian (a.k.a. Tiny) has come to the fore as my new snuggling pal. She has taken to ambushing me when I turn in at night and demanding that I pet her. But only so much! Because the Snapping Tortie has strict limits.
Once I'm asleep, she'll curl up on my right shoulder and purr against the side of my face. It was awkward at first, especially that time when the foxes in the back yard started barking and freaked her out, waking me all the way up in the middle of the night. However, she's getting better at easing in gently and staying asleep for a reasonable amount of time.
It's always impossible to predict how the inter-feline dynamics in the household will shift when there's a change. Xena and Trillian still hate each others' guts, but they have a carefully choreographed system for taking turns spending time with the humans.
I would really love to get another dog someday, but I can't really afford it – and I also think the cats are enjoying things the way they are. For now, I'm spending as much time as I can with all the cats and watching how their personalities continue to develop. In fact, Trillian is on the back of the chair right above me now. I think I'll pet her for a bit before I go to work.