Like a walk through the country side living on a small farm is full of daily surprises, sometimes wonderful and amazing, and other times puzzling and sad. I hope you will walk with me as I live out my dream of living on this tiny farm. You will come to know the dogs, cats, Shetland sheep and chickens that make up this farm and what goes into keeping them happy and healthy. Come and join the journey with me.
Saturday, January 15, 2011
Sage's Worst Nightmare
Dear rotten Sage. It has probably been the hardest on him to suddenly have six younger 'siblings' added to the household. The first year has gone by and we've all had to adjust, and adjust some more. He has done much better than I expected, but I know that we aren't out of the woods yet. My chief troublemakers (in the scheme of cat relationships) tend to be the three 'red-headed' boys--Sage, Gabe & Noah-- and they are continually pushing when they find any little opening. Some days there is allot of policing by the water bottle totin' human-bean. They do not care for that much.
So, back to Sage. He has always been a Conflicted Soul. He tried to pretend when he was a kitten that he was 'normal' but it soon became apparent that normalcy was wearing him down. Sage doesn't like to be touched--he has a 'my space' circle a mile wide--...only sometimes he does like to be petted. But then he gets aggravated if he thinks I'm 'making fun' or laughing at him, which I rarely am. He can and does bite and scratch, although of course it's discouraged. But he can also be very loving. He yells at me if I'm getting on to him. I have to be careful how he is handled in 'discipline' situations because they can quickly get out of control, and I'll have a huffy puffy swearing stalking caterwauling cat on my hands. One time he was playing under the blankets(pre-kitten invasion) and something happened--still not sure what--and Sage had a total and complete meltdown and wailed and hissed and carried on from under the nightstand for quite some time. It can be disconcerting to all involved.
He and Meshach have carved out a relationship over the years, mostly of aggravating each other, but occasionally a sweet lick on the head or such. However Sage is not a snuggler, and really is quite sensitive about being touched as I mentioned above.
About six months into the kitten invasion, Sage began to 'play' with the kittens. By this I mean he would run really fast and they would chase him. It was very exciting. If anyone got to close they got smacked and/or sworn at--but it was okay to chase him. Then Tempe decided that she loved Sage and he must love her too. Really, it reminded me of one of these books or movies, where you have the little girl who befriends the gruff old town hermit (who of course is a hermit because something terrible has happened in his life), and changes his life in a positive way forever.
The first not so subtle tactic Tempe used was to launch herself at Sage and grab him around the neck and wrestle him. Sage looked horrified to say the least---one of them.....touched him! However he was remarkably tolerant and just stalked away. Well, of course to Tempe this meant a green light. She was careful though for awhile and didn't over do it--she also didn't take 'bug off' for an answer.
Then suddenly a month or so ago, she latched on to Sage and became his best bud--whether he needed one or not. I thought it rather hilarious, myself. Everywhere Sage was, there was Tempe too. Sage on the computer cabinet? So was Tempe. Sage laying in the recliner? So was Tempe. Sage on the bed? You get the picture. The amazing part was and is that Sage seems to not only tolerate the little micro-managing furball, but he also seems to enjoy having her around. Now he even plays with her--chases, tackles and all. I'm not sure how she managed to win him over, when he would do the smack down on any of the others that dared to be so in his face, but her persistence has paid off.