The death of Freckles, the wee grey cat, ended the plan to have two cats, one to entertain the other. That left me with Louie, approximately five years old, very much in charge of his life and mine, with one exception: He wanted to go outside and I intended him to be an inside cat.
Louie’s demonstrated interest in the outside means he has to wear a collar with “credentials”, just in case he gets out on his own. He’s my cat companion now because someone else didn’t take the same precaution.
Louie has options to going outside. He has a cat tree on one side of the apartment. On the other side, he has a perch on a shelf on my computer desk. Both allow him to look outside, but, perhaps more important to a cat, a place to stretch out or curl up and sleep!
[Little Freckles is in the photo below. The other two are Louie.]
Looking isn't the same as smelling and seeing, though. Louie continues to beg to go out. Whine I mean. He is persistent and annoying!
I tried to stop the whining by picking Louie up and carrying him outside the front door for a sniff and a look. That helps. He stays interested pretty much as long as I can stand the cold- that was a sly way of putting it! Two variations of the theme: mechanical things and dogs scare him so he wants to go in right now, and cats and people interest him so we have to stay out a little longer.
Back in for whatever reason Louie runs first to his cat tree where he scratches vigorously, shredding carpet or scattering slivers of wood, depending on which of two vertical scratching poles he decides to use. Ears folded back, his full 20 pounds put into it, Louie looks like a lynx or bobcat marking his territory.
The transformation is remarkable for a pussycat! Sometimes he vocalizes with little growls or scared murmurs, again depending on why we came in. “You do it Louie. You mark your territory so the bogeyman doesn’t catch you in your sleep!” I’ll say in encouragement. Or “Good for you Louie. You the cat!”
This side benefit of holding Louie outside is he’s much more comfortable when I want to give him “kitty wuv”, holding him just to pet and cuddle him. The other day he even put his head on my shoulder while I cuddled him. Altogether now: awwww!
The day came to take him to meet the neighbors. The lady across the way was ok, though Louie wasn’t interested in her so much as the new smells outside and coming from her home (it was just after dinnertime).
Next, I took him to meet a neighbor I thought he’d really like, Pepe the tuxedo cat! Pepe is a smaller male than Louie, and is the prettiest tuxedo cat I’ve ever seen, with classic markings. Louie wasn’t impressed. Pepe came out of the darkened bedroom where he hid when we came in. Louie hissed. Pepe ran back into the bedroom, and Louie and I left after a little more chatter with Louie’s human companion. Time to leave! Oops!
Come to think of it, though, Louie hissed at Freckles, too, but by the next morning, she was play-stalking and pouncing on him!
Louie at two months: I can’t imagine life without him!