Calico Chloe Joins Kitties Blue
Chloe wasn’t fooling anyone when she selected this rug as a hiding place.
In 1993, Chloe became the first calico cat to join our household. At that time we had Skooter, Steamer, Daphne, Thelma and Louise. None of them had ever met a calico cat and neither had we. And for some unknown reason they took an instant dislike to her. This lasted throughout her lifetime. We did not share their opinion of her.
Chloe hiding among the bears.
Chloe, whenever possible, would find a place to hide and take refuge. One of her favorite hiding places was atop an armoire among a collection of stuffed animals. She blended in so well and could stay so still that we could walk by and never see or suspect she was there. Even if we couldn’t find her, we were pretty certain that all the others knew exactly where she was but didn’t care to share that information. She was out of their sight and that was good enough for them.
Chloe hiding in the laundry hamper after receiving some boo-boos on her nose.
Chloe finds this box a nearly perfect fit!
Lily Olivia Arrives on the Scene
In 1999 when Lily Olivia followed us home we thought she and Chloe, both calicos, would bond and have a friend in each other. But even though we already were a haven for six cats, we had not yet figured out that cats never do what their caregivers expect. (For more on that subject check out the previous post, “My Cat’s Better Than Your Cat.”) Chloe didn’t like Lily Olivia any better than the other Kitties Blue. In fact, all the others treated her even worse than they did Chloe. They hissed at her, chased her and left her with a myriad of wounds on her nose and ears. Chloe had those as well as evidenced in the above photo.
We understand that in any group situation, a hierarchy exists with the first arrival most often at the top and the last at the bottom. However, with all our past and current kitties, Chloe and Lily are the only two who have been disliked by all their housemates. And that includes those who have joined our clan after the admittance of these two. Lily Olivia is currently the oldest and the longest in residence, yet she remains near the bottom. We continue to wonder why this is the case. My best guess is that neither Chloe nor Lily fought back. They both would immediately turn and run trying to escape the otherwise inevitable boo-boos.
Attempts at Friendship
We have had a recent exception. Lisbeth has tried to make friends with Lily Olivia and has approached her nose to nose. Lily has hissed and turned away, but no fisticuffs have occurred. When Astrid has approached her, however, Lily has immediately lashed out at her with a right cross. It would seem that a calico/tortoise shell relationship doesn’t work any better than a calico/calico partnership.
Lily Olivia takes refuge in a bakery box. At least she waited until all the cupcakes had been eaten.
Is Lily Olivia Possessed?
We do believe Lily Olivia was “bi-polar” when she came to live with us, but the constant abuse hasn’t helped with her personality. She can be as cuddly and loving as any of our other cats and then suddenly turn into a hissing and scratching monster. On one occasion, shortly after joining our cat house, she gave me a look that actually frightened me. Now, we have been given the “stink eye” by all of our cats at one time or another, but I had never seen anything like this. I was sure that Lily was possessed by the devil. I backed away slowly and let her have her space.
If we get a look from her that in any way resembles her “I am possessed” one, we know to stay clear of her.
We are truly surprised that in her 13 years Lily has never given up and abandoned us for a less-populated household. However, she does spend 90 percent of the day across the street in a chair on a neighbor’s front porch as well as in other hiding places we know nothing about. In fact, Mauricio, Misty May and MacKenzie, when he was alive, chased her across the street to get rid of her.
And she is one of the worst when it comes to staying out late or over-night. She used to get in one of the rockers on our front porch and sleep there, but now I am not sure where she hangs out when she does not report in at bedtime.
Madison and Mac (on the right) were best friends, so sleeping together was a daily occurrence. But only on our bed would you find them in close proximity to Lily.
We do have one place in the house that the kitties consider to be the DMZ…our king-sized bed. I am not saying that no feline fracas has ever occurred on the bed. If one of the kitties jumps up and lands on one already present, a little fur might fly. If Lily is one of the kitties involved, she retreats to the floor of Dad Tom’s closet. Once cats and humans have gone to sleep, she will usually sneak back in bed and curl up next to me.
Sometimes Lily still feels a need for refuge when she’s on the bed.
Watch for future posts with some more cute photos showing the kitties in some of their favorite hiding and napping places as well as one about cats in high places.
Update: When Lily Olivia passed away, Misty May began torturing Astrid. Like Lily, she has never fought back. She just “screams” and runs for her life. Misty May only has to look at her, and Astrid takes off as if shot from a cannon.