h2g2 Post 25.10.01

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Posted: 25th October 2001


I thought that I was doing the correct, responsible thing! Honestly I did. But now I'm not so sure.

Way back in March two adorable white kittens, born on New Year's Day, were welcomed into this household. One was a tomcat, already much larger than his sister and we called him Quark (Yes... I know, does he have big ears?). The delicate, very sweet-faced girl we called Kathryn although this soon degenerated, on my part anyway, to Katy Kitty.

Time passed and they displayed all the usual behaviour one expects from cats; playfulness, constant washing of themselves and each other, always ready for food and a few minor problems with the neighbours about pot plants on their balcony which resulted in them becoming house cats in the truest sense of the words.

Then today, because Katy had already been on the 'pill' since she was six months old and because we hope to resolve the neighbour problem and allow them outside again soon, we had booked Quark in to be neutered. There are appeals everywhere about doing the responsible thing and having your cats neutered... I have had cats all my life and always done this for them with no ill effects. So what went wrong today?

Well, Quark had been a bit of a bully in his own way. Being much bigger than Katy he had made himself her master and ruled the roost. There was nothing really nasty going on but HE was the boss! When he came home from the vets he was a little shaky, understandably, but seemed settled and not in pain. I left him curled up on warm towels on the settee and came upstairs to check my email and start on The Post. Suddenly I heard a screeching from downstairs. Poor Quark, still wobbly, was cowering under a table and Katy was spitting and growling at him with obvious dislike. My gentle little ball of white fluff had turned into a harpy!

Quark has a favourite place, curled up within the tablecloth on a dining-room chair, so I persuaded him there and sat with Katy on the settee. All calmed down... both purred when I stroked them and peace reigned again. As soon as I left them alone, however, the fighting or rather show of displeasure started again. I think that Katy doesn't recognise him because his scent has changed or because of the 'smell' of the vets surgery. After I had stroked and fussed him she sniffed ME suspiciously.

So, I have spent the entire day and most of the night keeping them apart. They are not normally allowed upstairs but I had to resort to bringing first one, then the other, up with me to sit in the computer room. I can tell that Quark is unhappy and bemused by all this... firstly he didn't try and sit on the keyboard, his favourite trick, and secondly he still tries to approach Katy to be friends.

They are both downstairs now and all is quiet... for the moment. I hope that whatever is upsetting Katy smooths over soon. Up until today they had played together and groomed each other and were the best of friends. Now Katy looks at me reproachfully as if to ask why I have taken her brother away and replaced him with a stranger.

Perhaps, with the influx of visitors for the Dutch Meet this weekend, they will return to normal. I certainly hope so! There are enough wars going on and I certainly don't want another one here!

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