It was time for a new kitten because our youngest cat, Miyako, raised with her brother, a twin soul, who vanished a year ago, wanted company so much that she kept trying to play with Judy, our older cat, who suffers by PTSD. Besides, Natalie goes to college soon, and what better way to console myself than with a kitten? Then again, it could be time for a new kitten everyday if I just acted on impulse.
After finding out that our friend Audrey had 19 kittens to distribute, we headed into the wilds of Jefferson County last night and followed a small gravel driveway until I saw a slow-moving possum who simply turned, looked at the car, and meandered onward. I drove a few more feet and saw an giant raccoon standing on its hind legs, and heavens to Betsy, tons of kittens running all around him. I find it’s an advantage to get a cat raised by wild animals. Some of our favorite kitties came from similar origins: Lou was raised by chickens and Saulina by a water heater, and they turned out great (Saul even lived for 20 years).
So we got out of the car and sat down on Audrey’s porch where kittens raced over our laps and tumbled onto each other. It wasn’t hard to choose: Natalie and I have a soft spot for runts, and one little kitten was oh-so-little, in fact, more like the chihuahua of kittens. She came right to us and stayed. I tried to interest myself in the pudgy black and white bouncers, but we had made our decision as soon as we saw the runt. So we named her Sookie Belle and took her home.
Now we’re in another round of working with our existing cats to accept the newbie (letting them get close enough to hiss but not to attack) and helping the kitten bond with Mariah, our lab-mation (letting them touch noses but getting Mariah to lie down and not bang the floor so loudly with her tail-wagging). We’re also falling back into kitten love, a fast-moving and fleeting kind of sweetness that ends quickly and makes us long for the next time we can open our lives up to a new kitten.