Sunday, November 16, 2014

ONE DAY YOU ARE A BORING OLD PERSON AND THE NEXT DAY YOU ARE HERDING CATS!





Friday was the first snow of the year.  It wasn't much, only about two inches here in the foothills of western Maine.

  

This is the time that my wife and always look forward to – a time to light the wood stove, enjoy the beauty of nature, kick back with a pot of tea and a good book and appreciate quiet serenity: but not this year…

We lost our beautiful eighteen year old Ragdoll cat, Dixie Darling Jill, last January.   We have intended to adopt another cat, but it just wasn't the time so soon after the loss of our constant companion of almost two decades.  

But, last week we were checking out pictures of cats at local shelters posted on the internet, and just out of curiosity searched Maine Coon Cats in Maine.   A length popped up to Thunderpaws Maine Coon Cats.   (check out this link to Siberia Farms where Thunderpaws Maine coons are raised.)

We gave a call and talked to Donna Chase, who has been raising Maine Coons for thirty years.  She was coming down to south western Maine from the north country where she lives to bring five male kittens to be picked up by their new owners.   We told her we might be interested in a female and she said she had only one but would bring it with her for us to view. 

Donna Chase with Bella and baby Toula


We had been looking for two cats, because sometimes we are gone overnight and lone cats can suffer loneliness.   Donna said that she breeds her adult cats only three times and then rotates them out, and that she had two adult females she was looking to retire and would make a special price if we were interested and willing to spay the adult, along with the kitten when she was old enough.

A two hour trip down to southern Maine to connect with Donna changed our life from a quiet sedentary older couple to herders of cats.

Bella, the four years old mackerel polydactyl Tabby with beautiful yellow eyes is quiet and dignified; she is quickly adjusting to her new home and to us (Maine Coon Cats are a laid back breed – people oriented and lovable by nature.) 

Bella with the beautiful yellow eyes



Many Maine Coons are polydactyl (five toes instead of four) which gives them feet that look like they are wearing bearpaw snowshoes.


Toula the kitten, on the other hand, is wild – a bundle of energy that never stops.   She is either running at full speed through the house, climbing up our legs or perching on some piece of furniture ready to leap; she is chasing her toys, in our laps, or annoying poor Bella until she crawls under the couch for refuge.  This baby cat runs and dashes or explores for hours until she is exhausted and then wants to sleep in our laps.

And here is trouble.


Neither cat claws the furniture (we have a scratching post they use) but our legs are pitted and scared where Toula has dashed through the room and scampered up our legs to get in our lap – on our book – at the computer keys….

With hair tips on the ears and huge feet she looks like a lynx baby.


We are again cat people – and loving it.   We did not realize how routine our life had gotten until we started herding cats. 
the Ol’Buzzard


http://www.siberia-farm.com/

9 comments:

  1. My friends who live up near by Exeduiel have had a huge Maine Coon named Merlin for many years. I like Maine Coons because they are very doggie like in their habits. Do you think the big cat that was terrorizing Paris last week was a Maine Coon? Regarding your last post, I just posted 2 music videos by one of my favorite new young artists...A 71 year old guy from Bombay who is known as Slow Joe. I heard a live concert by him and his band, The Ginger Accident, last month on French radio and was instantly knocked out. Poetry, performance art, rock and Bollywood pop all come together. I heard an interview with him and he said his earliest musical influence was listening to Gene Autry on his parents Victrola when he was 4. He spent most of his life getting by as a scam artist/tour guide/street musician on the beaches of Goa..

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    1. Before cats I had two German Shepherds and two Basset hounds; and for a short time a crazy Irish Wolfhound. They suited me then - cats suit me now. When I was more active - always in the woods camping, hunting, fishing etc dogs were a constant companion...they fit that lifestyle; now I settle in front of the wood stove with a glass of wine, a good book and a cat in my lap and I begin to purr.
      the Ol'Buzzard

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  2. How wonderful! Bella and Toula sound delightful -- enjoy the kitten while she's young and exuberant! I'm a little envious of you with two new cats in your life.

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    1. As I said: gone from a sedentary life to serving cats.

      We had intended to get shelter cats; but once you see the Maine Coon you fall in love.
      O'B

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  3. Our cat owns us:) We received him from our local university. He was used for research but flunked out due to being too healthy! Laser is very loving and keeps the neighbors in purrs. A big yellow tabby with an big O stripe on his side. I love having a purring cat. Enjoy both of yours.

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    1. We have been owned by cats for most of our married life.
      O'B

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  4. I realize there are basic differences between cat and dog people. I am a dog person...I tolerate cats, my wife loves cats, but from what I have seen of Maine Coons, they have the best qualities of both species...I am now looking for another dog...and my neighbor keeps offering us cats...Our last cat was a strange little thing that resembled the Welsh breed, Cymric...a vestigial tail, tiny ears, flat face, short legs and a body shape that was aerodynamic like a little football. She was very strange and as far as we knew she lived more than 18 years.

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  5. Dexter is part Main Coon, and when he was a kitten;..he was batshit..now he is mostly laid back and just likes to be loved on..but every now and then he will play with the invisible alien cat that resides on the ceiling.and just goes fucking nuts..he loves the cold weather and runs around outside like a crazyed person..love the little shit..oops..here he comes.

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  6. Cats are fun. Our three are full siblings and could not be more different. No idea what breed or many multiples of whatever breeds. Their personalities keep us in stitches.

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