Thursday, December 3, 2015

#Cats This Week--What's In A #Feline Name? by Karen Rose Smith


When a new pet enters our lives, sometimes a name is immediately apparent and other times we have to wait for the right name to manifest itself. Sometimes the appearance of the furry friend presents the framework for its name, other times it's a personality or behavior trait that suggests the name. This week, I decided to share how my feline family received their names.

Halo was a stray who appeared on our patio on Mother's Day. She was frail, malnourished and pregnant. We had lost a very special outside yellow tabby the previous September, but it was difficult to go out on the patio because Lancelot's presence was still felt. But the stray gave us new reason to spend time on the patio. It was almost as if Lance had sent our new friend to us to fill the void he left. Ironically, the stray had beautiful colors throughout her coat, but a ring of pure gold on the tip of her tail. We referred to it as Lance's halo and the stray became our Halo.                                         


Paddy was the firstborn in Halo's litter. We witnessed the birth and decided the kitten looked very much like a little bear. Without knowing the sex of the kitten, we brainstormed "bear" names and settled on Paddington. When "he" turned out to be a "she," we decided to keep the name because it was endearing and just seemed to fit. So she became Miss Paddington, Paddy for short.



Zoie Joy was another stray we found in a bush in our backyard...on my parents' wedding anniversary.  I always considered her a gift from my parents. She was named after a character in one of my books who ran away to find her bliss. Zoie and I formed an immediate bond through the weeks of quarantine before we could introduce her to our indoor cats and she has found her bliss in our home. We added "Joy" to her name because of the joy she has given us. 


London, the oldest member of our furry family, was born in a shed on a friend's farm. We chose her from the litter and had a few weeks to come up with a name because she was too young to be weened from her mother. A colleague of my husband suggested "London" because of the gray misty fog that often envelopes the city. It felt like a strong name yet, like the city itself whose royal grandeur attracts so many tourists, an endearing name as well.   

Sunnybud has been around for two years but only recently has become a regular visitor. It took a long while to gain his trust, to get him to step into the basement and just recently to start to "hang" out in our sun room. As first, for lack of a better name, we just called him "Buddy," but the more he came and the more affectionate he became, we noticed the light yellow of his coat and the way it glowed when the sun shone on it. So we began referring to him as "Sunny" some of the time and "Buddy" other times. Eventually he became our "Sunnybud." Now he is our sunshine and we love the feeding and petting sessions, but know they will end on his terms when he is ready to move on for the day or night.  

And just recently, we've had a new visitor at our feeding stations. She is a beautiful tortie with the most beautiful green eyes. This week, she watched cautiously as we talked to her behind the storm door, but she still runs away when we move outside. We have decided she needs a name, but the right one has not yet presented itself. So I would be open to any suggestions you might leave in the comments below.  



Our pets are special. Their names remind us of where they came from and how they've touched our hearts.  What's in a pet name? Love, memories and a whole lot more!


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USA TODAY Bestselling Author Karen Rose Smith is an only child who delved into books at an early age. She learned about kindred spirits from Anne of Green Gables, solved mysteries with Nancy Drew and wished she could have been the rider on The Black Stallion. Yet even though she escaped often into story worlds, she had many aunts, uncles and cousins around her on weekends. Her sense of family and relationships began there. Maybe that's why families are a strong theme in her novels, whether mysteries or romances. Her 91st novel will be released in 2016.

Readers often ask her about her pastimes. She has herb, flowers and vegetable gardens that help her relax. In the winter, she cooks rather than gardens.  And year round she spends most of her time with her husband, as well as her four rescued cats who are her constant companions. They chase rainbows from sun catchers, reminding her life isn't all about work, awards and bestseller lists. Everyone needs that rainbow to chase.

Karen looks forward to interacting with readers. They can find her at the links below. 



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24 comments:

Brenda said...

Matilda, nickname Tilly. The name came to mind almost immediately from a book I read. The character was pretty, very shy/bashful and just wanted to be loved. Yet spent so much time on the sidelines watching others have what she wanted.

Connie said...

I've always liked the names Patches or Peaches for a tortie or a calico. They are such a beautiful kitty!

Jeannie Daniel said...

Enjoyed finding out about how you names your cats. The new cat is just beautiful. Maybe Emerald, she looks so elegant, maybe Arabella.

StephanieHobrock said...

Well, the season is approaching and she reminds me so much of the sweetest kitty I ever had, Noel! We called her anole sometimes after a Christman decoration made by a very special lady of little "angels" who got out of order in the Christmas pageant.

Erica Davis said...

Madeline, nickname Maddy! Just because she reminds me so much of Paddy. It's such a sweet name too for a petite little tortie.

gpangel said...

I usually have to think awhile on names. But, here are a few:

Muffin

Cinnamon

Cookie

I don't know why she makes me think of warm cozy foods.




Patricia T said...

You're better at names, than me, Karen. I know one thing...she's precious!

Barb W. said...

Years ago I knew a woman named Elizabeth whose "Hippie Name" was Calico. And ELIZABETH just seems like a purrfect name for this beauty.

Billie Jackson said...

I don't have a name to suggest, yet! I loved hearing the backstory for the names and entrance into your loves. Our dogs have made it difficult to get to know the cat who comes to us for food and warmth so she just ending up being called "Miss Kitty". That wasn't supposed to be her real name, just something to call her until we decided.

Sandra Bartles said...

I think the new kitty should also have a bear name since she looks so much like Miss Paddington. 😊

I really enjoyed reading how you came up with the kitties' names. They are all so precious!!!

Melissa, Mudpie and Angel Truffles (Mochas, Mysteries and Meows) said...

I think torties need chocolate-related names, hence my Truffles and Mudpie :) Maybe Mocha or BonBon?

listening2u said...

Look at those gorgeous round owl eyes...and she looks so smart too. I'd call her Hootie!

Kelly said...

My parents have a cat that looks a lot like this one. I know they are a torti, but they are also called brindles. So that is what they named her Brindle. I sometimes call her Brindolyn. I have a torti as well and her name is Sophie, then I also have a tan tabby named Misty, a tuxedo named Claire and my black baby is Ivy. We so love our furrbabies.

Sharon said...

She almost looks as though she's like to come in.....but isn't quite sure. She is tortiliciously lovely though. My tortie girl's name is Shadow and she would happily share it with this lovely girl. She got that name because she disappears into the shadows and cannot be seen easily if at all.

Peg said...

Mystery ~

Nedlnut said...

Tootsie (she reminds me of a tootsie roll) or Honey for Honey Bear. Sometimes I have to wait awhile until their personality emerges. With the fosters, we know their "real" parents will name them. One that was Luna here is now LuLu with her new Mom. Sweetie Pie is now Chessa (love that name) with her new Mom. One that was Ronald here (trapped him at McDonalds) became Murphy with his new family.

Angela Heath said...

Beauty because s he is beautiful. Or even blessed. Because she is blessed to have found you & your husband

Pam said...

Tinkerbelle. She flits around the garden, missing nothing with her bright green emerald eyes. She is shy, aloof, yet charms you. Can be shortened to Tink or Belle

Pam said...

Tinkerbelle. She flits around your garden missing nothing with her emerald green eyes. She is beautiful, shy, and aloof, yet she charms and mystifies you as any good fairy would. Tinkerbelle or Belle for short.

Pam said...

Tinkerbelle. She flits around the garden, missing nothing with her bright green emerald eyes. She is shy, aloof, yet charms you. Can be shortened to Tink or Belle

catslady said...

I've named so many cats and like you said, some come easily and others, not so much. I have a tortie that was given to me when my daughter's boyfriend had a litter of kittens. My daughter had named her "stripe" because of the yellow line that goes through her face but that wasn't a sweet enough name for her and I named her Lilly but her offical name is Lillystripe :)

Mama Cat said...

Wonderful post! And I understand about how one cat's presence can still be felt. It has been a year now since we lost Miss Calli after more than 5 years on our carport, and there are still times I almost expect to see her. The latest MamaKitty that the tom brought to us has stuck around, as has one of her babies and a stranger. We've tried to avoid naming them in hopes of getting close enough to touch, trust, and find homes. MamaKitty now faces our front door, on the top step, waiting for the door to open, with pleading look for food in her eyes, just the same as Miss Calli did. As if Calli finally found another cat worthy to call us her people. Blessings! And if I have name idea for your tortie, will be back! Jeanie

Deborah Blake said...

I like the name Emerald that someone suggested, because her eyes are so green. Or maybe Peridot, called Peri for short?

Jacki Marunycz said...

Her eyes look to be the color of green grapes. I'd call her 'Chablis.'