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Kitty was born in a trailer court in Portland, near as we could piece together with what the trailer court manager told us, in 1994.  Back then she was called Mama Kitty because she populated the whole trailer court.  Drug addicts would adopt and then abandon her, either when she was replaced with her cute little kittens or when they moved out.  She learned to be loud and demanding as a way of getting her needs met.  A “tree dweller” she liked high places, often getting up on top of the trailers.  Her life was hard.

Kitty Xmas 2014.JPG

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Before she came to my house, she lived with my now-ex and I’d visit on weekends.  He had his Harley right outside his trailer and she loved sitting on it, sometimes using it as a perch with which to jump to the nearest tree and hence the top of the trailer.  I bought her a green and pink towel that said “Princess” on it.  It kind of wrecked John’s image as a biker, but he tolerated it, after all, it was for Kitty.

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John was getting ready to dump both of us.  He moved his trailer to my place, removed the flooring, cabinets, appliances, and dumped it, leaving to who knows where.  He later told me he’d gone back to the trailer court and saw Kitty sitting all forlorn in the trailer space, all alone.  He picked her up and drove her the 3 ½ hours to my place, the last time I’d see him before divorcing him, Kitty’s only time in a car.  She yowled loudly the entire drive.  I’d known Kitty for about 2-3 years by that time and he abandoned both of us.  It was me, her, Miss Mocha, and Lucky.  Miss Mocha was a beautiful cat that showed up at my house one day.  Her and Kitty agreed to a truce.  Lucky was a sweet well-trained Whippet and Kitty showed her what was what.  Lucky was appropriately scared of her.  After Lucky passed in 2008, I adopted Arlie, a huge Husky/Golden Retriever.

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Kitty refused to come in the house for 1 2/3 years, preferring to live out on the 30’ covered back patio.  She had a “cat house”  to get protection from the wind, a porch swing to lay on, a “cat tree” in the form of a tall mailbox to sit up on and watch the world below.

There were neighborhood bully cats that would try to steal her food and beat up on her in the process so I devised a box she could go into to eat and I’d close it while she was eating so she could do so in peace, letting her out when she was done.  Finally Kitty decided she’d rather take on “the dog” than deal with the neighborhood bully cats.  She let him know what was what and he jumped to…I literally saw him go all the way around the house to avoid walking in front of her.

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But I get ahead of myself…one day not too long after I acquired custody of her, she went missing.  I looked for her, called her, to no avail.  Five days later my son was outside and her a bare croaking meow and spotted her high up in a tree.  He drove his big truck over and parked it under the tree, standing on top of the cab (which put a dent in it) he barely reached her, scratching and clawing him all the way down!

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  • 2 weeks later...

A couple days later she went missing again, this time he discovered her up the tree further.  There was no way he could reach her and contrary to what t.v. shows, firemen do not rescue cats.  He was top marksman in the Air Force so he decided to shoot the branch off the tree.  I knew he wouldn’t hit her, but I was afraid of her landing…the branch drifted down back and forth, in slow motion, much like in a cartoon, and she landed perfectly unhurt.  She never climbed a tree again though!

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When she came to my house, there was twine hanging out her belly.  I knew someone had crudely “fixed her,” no self-respecting vet would ever do a job like that!  I clipped the twine and shuddered to think how it went down.  Did they ply her with alcohol?  How had she survived?!

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Before she came to my house, she lived with my ex and I’d visit on weekends (before we split for good).  He had his Harley right outside his trailer and she loved sitting on it, sometimes using it as a perch with which to jump to the nearest tree and hence the top of the trailer.  I bought her a green and pink towel that said “Princess” on it.  It kind of wrecked John’s image as a biker, but he tolerated it, after all, it was for Kitty.

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She’d never been to a vet.  In my local town there is only a vet up on Wednesdays and every time I’d plan to take her, she’d disappear.  I figure she had a sixth sense about it.  I spoke with a lady that does cat rescue and she recommended against vaccinating her as she was already old and she didn’t think it was good for them at that age. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

One day Arlie came into the kitchen where I fed him and Kitty was sitting on the step stool and reached out and blopped him good, narrowly missing his eye with her sharp claws.  This gentle giant of a dog reached out and gently blopped her back, letting her know it was NOT the thing to do.  She jumped down off the stepstool in a huff and ran from the kitchen angrily.  I told her it served her right, she was lucky Arlie was so gentle with her.  He had no intention of hurting her, just getting a message across to her.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Kitty would store up energy and then tear around the house full speed.  One day Arlie saw her doing this and he thought, “Game on!”  He jumped down from the couch and tore after her.  She was NOT amused!  With a sharp look in her eye she took off faster and I had to call him back.  He looked at me like, “Why, Mom?  She started it!”

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A friend of mine was over one day and brought some Easy Cheese with him.  He put some on Arlie’s nose and Arlie looked cross-eyed while trying to lick it off.  Not to be outdone, Kitty wanted some and she’s been addicted to it ever since!  I bought it just for her over the next ten years.  She’d sit on the step stool loudly yowling until I gave it to her.  She knew which cupboard it was kept in and she’d paw at it until I’d open it and give her some.  Later she started sticking her little tongue in and out as if giving me the message she wanted some.  She’d do her loudest begging when I was on the phone because I couldn’t hear with her carrying on and I’d hurry up and give her some to shut her up.  She knew how to work it to her advantage.  She'd spend hours in the kitchen, in the dark, waiting for me to come in so she could beg for some Easy Cheese!

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Thanks for sharing more about Arlie and Kitty! I didn't know "Easy Cheese " was a thing until I went to Scotland in my 20's. But man, could my Misty and Prince ever hear the block of cheese being unwrapped. 'Twas one of their absolute favorites. 

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Often when we’d go on walks, Kitty would catch up to us and walk with us.  It was odd to see a cat going on walks as well as the dog!  She loved it though and would turn around and go back when she was tired.

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Kitty had the amazing ability to heal herself.  I honestly thought she’d live forever.  Another cat could wound her and she always heal, never needing antibiotic or help, she was amazing.  She started dropping her dry food and I looked into her mouth and noticed her upper front teeth were ground down and black gums behind them.  By this time she was 23 and I called around to the vets in the city and no one would touch her because of her age.  I wanted them to extract the teeth but they told me she wouldn’t live through it and they wouldn’t do it.  I told them they’d be surprised what she’d lived through.  Over the next two years I saw the black spot get lighter and smaller…she was healing.  I’ve never seen anything like it.
I honestly thought she'd live forever, she was amazing.  I was ill-prepared for what was to come...as we all are.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Now 25 years old, it was Christmas and she wasn’t feeling well.  She turned down her Easy Cheese, which was unheard of.  I was really worried about her but she seemed to feel better the next couple of days.  Then she started throwing up in the night…not fur balls, but saliva with a piece of cat food in it.  She was drinking and peeing more.  I thought of kidney failure and made an apt. with the vet.  By this time, Miss Mocha had died and Arlie had also.  It was just her and me. 

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