Max Cat

Maxwell

Saturday, June 22, 2019

He can drive me nuts, this cat (an inside-outside guy) who’s lived with me for 10 years. When he’s outside I worry, because he’s a capable hunter, and hopefully, not capturing critters that I love, like birds, chipmunks, lizards, and bunnies. When he’s inside I worry, because he’s under my feet–easy to be stepped on or tripped over. When I’m exhausted from hard physical work and want nothing near me, he insists on cuddling in my lap. At bedtimes, I find the sound-sleeping lump on my favorite pillow or somewhere on my side of the bed. Oh, Max!

As cats go, he might be one of the coolest, unafraid of my dogs and human visitors. Outside, he knows my property’s every nook and cranny and attends to spots where he anticipates finding victims. He leaps onto the top edges of my horses’ watering troughs and expertly balances to drink. He scoots past the goats to avoid getting butted, and slips into the chicken coop to hunt mice. (He’s a lousy mouser, plays with the critters until he gets bored, and often then releases them.)

In harsh winters when I feed birds, Maxwell must stay indoors. He’s always on a window sill, watching the feeders with desire written all over him. In summertime, I feed only hummingbirds with feeders hanging too high for Max to reach. He’s smart enough to stay way clear of Cockatoo Peaches’ capable beak. Recently, I adopted a young canary–she’s tiny and flits around in her cage, while he’s fascinated, can’t stop trying to get to her. This summer, the easy fix is that Max goes outside and Stella (the bird) perches safely near a window. By winter, I’ll have figured out how to keep both inside and her absolutely safe. One option is a high-hanging cage.

Although Max gets to spend lots of time outside, I’m against it, for there are many dangers, like cars, coyotes, owls, and other overhead predators. Many years ago, I participated with a cat rescue organization and had “never outside!”) drummed into me. With this lucky guy, so far, so good.

Despite the worries and inconveniences of having Max around, I admire and enjoy him. At 12 years of age, he’s close to entering “kitty old age”, and hopefully, will stay healthy, vigorous, and close to me for many more years.

Dear Friends, to top it off, a purring kitty can lower a human’s blood pressure. Diana

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