Manja Cats, Singapore & Us

Manja Cats: Tigger, Ve Ching, Harmony & Missy (in order of adoption); Singapore: Where we are currently living; Us: Alex's British, Tarsier Girl is Singaporean.

Friday, August 11, 2006


Missy in 2003, looking leaner

In some ways, it's quite hard to write about Missy cos she came into our lives during SARS and there was so much going on then that some details are a little hazy. I remember her quite clearly before SARS. She was a friendly little community cat who lived around our block. Her colouring and her antics made her stand out. For instance, she would often lie on a little grassy knoll under a beautiful tree next to our block. She would hold her upper body up and lie there with her head held high, looking very elegant and a little regal. There was also the time when I saw her running around the roof-top on the other side of our U-shaped block. My side of the block is 12-storey high and the other side has 6 stories. One day, after coming out of the lift on the 11th storey, I noticed a little cat running around the rooftop on the other side in the very hot afternoon sun. It shocked me to see a cat on the roof cos a) it's the first time I've seen a cat on the roof and b) how in the world did she get up there? The only access I know of is one of those flat-against-the-wall type of straight ladder that you have to climb up from the 6th floor to get onto the roof.

Anyway, in early June 2003, we decided to adopt her cos our block is just metres away from a coffeeshop. We brought a carrier down, picked her up and put her in. Now, here's where the hazy part begins. I remember that I couldn't bring her home at the time because I was fostering 2 cats in my spare room. I remember bringing her to the vet's for a check-up and shots. I remember having to put her with a pet store for a few days and then with a friend for some time. I remember seeing her in a cage in the living room so that Tigger, Ve Ching, Loy Loy & Harmony could check her out and vice versa. And I definitely remember her meowing under our bed every 10 minutes from 9pm to 7pm for 2 straight weeks. Everything else is a blur.

After the cat killing rate had returned to pre-SARS 'normal', we did wonder whether Missy would be happier being a community cat, since she wasn't getting along with Ve Ching. To test her, we left the front door and gate open to see if she would run away. She didn't.

We've had her for slightly more than 3 years now and believe me when I say that having two fighting cats in the flat for 3 weeks is very stressful, let alone 3 years! In the first 2 years, I felt frustrated almost all the time 'cos I felt as if I've tried all possible means of getting Missy and Ve Ching to get along but none of them seem to work! But over time, the dynamics between them seem to have changed somewhat, and in the last 6 months, the two of them appear to be heading towards an uneasy truce. Luckily, in all this time, neither of them have been seriously hurt. Sometimes, after a fight, I'll find small clumps of fur on the floor, but when I check them for injuries, all I'll find is a tiny little scratch. Guess their 'bark', or in this case, their posturing, is worse than their bite.

Despite these years of stress and frustration, I'm glad I've Missy in my life. She's the most affectionate of cats, often calling us as we pass by, asking to be sayang'd. More often than not, she will come over to us when we call her or wave to her. She's also terribly responsive to stroking and especially to t-touching, showing us with her rubbing and flopping over, just how much she appreciates us doing it. It's a joy watching her as she's one little cat who's really big on personality. She's also a cat who really loves her toys. At one time, she went through a phase of a few months, when she would start playing with her squeaky mouse right after we've gone to bed. We would then hear "squeak squeak squeak" of the toy mouse as it's being batted around in the living room. Soon after, there'll be a crash through the cat flap and the next thing we know, there's a Missy jumping around on our bed, attacking her mouse and making it squeak loudly as we try to fall asleep. In the last few years, Missy has also put on weight and although she's heavier, her bulky makes her nicer to carry. It's like hugging a soft teddy.

Missy in 2006, not quite so lean


Blogger KXBC said...

Looks like she's really enjoying her time in your home. Look at how she has grown.

I think the fighting is fine. Mine does too and I'll sometimes see clumps of fur in the morning. But there are no wounds at all. As long as one cat backs off, it's not going to be a serious fight.

9:54 am  
Blogger Tarsier Girl said...

Yeah, Missy does back off when Ve Ching goes after her. But she will also chase Tigger, who will be the one to back off. Harmony is the only one with no enemies. Everyone wants to play with her, which leaves her rather exhausted some days.:)

11:33 am  

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