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.


Me and my Sage


Seriously who could resist me?

13 comments:

Michelle said...

Ah, that's SO sweet! Having never had multiple house cats, I love reading about all the dynamics at your house. I'm sure it's wonderful entertainment to watch!

Voni said...

Tempe looks exactly like my Callie.

AJ-OAKS said...

Your house sounds exactly like mine! Having several indoor kitties each with their own personaly really keeps us on our toes doesn't it?
Sage and my Ozzy sound like brothers! Ozzy's pal is Jovi just like Tempe.
We would be so bored without the antics of the critters wouldn't we?

Teresa aka JW said...

Yep, I know about bossy, sassy cats who will die trying to be the boss over the household and themself. I have the scars to show. "But, I like that kind of cat spirit," she says walking away bloody and scratched.

Louise said...

What a lovely story about a curmudgeon's reluctant reformation (well, partial reformation at least.) I'm so glad that Tempe stuck to her guns and made him see that a friend is a good thing to have.

Nancy K. said...

What a wonderful story! Sage was just waiting for the right friend to come along and earn his trust!

phylliso said...

Tempe is just beautiful,how could Sage resist her.
Simba is not a cuddly cat either,he lets you know when you are allowed to pet him,then he times you,when you should be done already,he turns & bites you.We love him so!phylliso

Star said...

How cute! Persistence paid in the end huh! I think they look lovely curled up together and although they are solitary animals! they can also have lots of fun together.

Vicki Lane said...

Wonderful story -- just don't take no for an answer, Tempe

Christine said...

Sounds like Sage has Asperger Syndrome to me. Good for Tempe to help him out of his shell. lol

Christine said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kathy said...

Oh, Tammy - I love it! It reminded me so much of a cat we had years ago - a marmalade ginger cat as well. We moved here with just April and Bandit (we were normal then) until my father brought two kittens to live with us from his cat's litter. Socks loved Bandit and tried to snuggle with him all the time. Socks would follow Bandit around just to be close to him.
then, one day, Bandit was sound asleep on the love-seat. Socks, ever so cautiously, got up on the love-seat and snuggled with Bandit, safe against the Big Guy's tummy. Bandit woke up, looked at the Intruder, then with an exasperated look on his face, licked Socks' little head and then laid back down. They were inseparable until Bandit died. A few years later Socks passed from cancer, but I really think he just wanted to be with his best buddy.
Thanks for sparking my remembrances of my old curmudgeon and his pal.

Louise said...

I just read your entry on my blog. I'm sorry that you're having such a hard time in the snow, and now I'm worried about your dog. Is it Boone or Ashley? I hope that everything turns out all right.