Zoie, Ebbie and London spend some time on their own!
With three cats who we treat like kids, when we go away, we need a pet sitter. We visited our son who lives three quarters away across the country. I really wanted to go, but I also didn't want to leave Zoie. She's become a sweet, social kitty who likes to be with us through the whole day. We still feed her more often than Ebbie and London and will continue to do so until she's a year old. One aspect of her personality will probably never change--she startles easily. This is probably because of her first weeks in the wild. At heart, she's still a hunter who was left on her own when she was too little to fend for herself. When my husband sneezes, she runs for cover!
Like a mom leaving her kids, I worried. Ebbie and London know the routine when they see me separating clothes in the closet, setting do-not-forget items on the dining room table the week before we leave. When the suitcase appears, London likes to sleep on it or in it. Ebbie just gives me those looks that tell me she doesn't want her routine disrupted, that she doesn't want to miss her snuggling time with me after Zoie goes to bed in my office.
Bless my pet sitter. I left her 7 pages of printed instructions. Now that's not really as bad as it sounds. But I number have-to's for each visit and she checks them off. She's been watching over our animals for more than a dozen years. She also keeps her own check-off sheets and leaves them for me with handwritten notes so we know exactly what happened when we were gone--from London's hairballs, to Zoie's Zumba in the litter box, to Ebbie finishing her tablespoon of cream. I knew that Zoie let my pet sitter hold her on her shoulder, that Ebbie played with feather toys, that London rolled in the catnip. The wonderful quality about our pet sitter is that she loves my girls, too. She not only feeds them but plays with them and actually knows them.
Not only did Ebbie, London and Zoie survive our separation, but they thrived. When we returned home, they seemed content with each other...and with us. But they were glad to have us back. I could tell by the way Ebbie cuddled close, by Zoie rubbing her head against mine, by London seeking us out more than usual.
|Zoie, Ebbie and London are happy that we are home again!
We're back to normal now...and waiting for real spring weather when we can open windows to better hear birds sing and watch hummingbirds flitter at feeders. No more trips planned for a while. But thank goodness when we do decide to be away from home, we don't have to worry about our furry companions...because they are well taken care of.
©2013 Karen Rose Smith
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