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Tabby 2003


Tabby came to live with us just after Christmas 1995.  I found her at the SPCA in Mangere, Auckland.  She was about a year old, and had been a long-term stray.  The stitches from her de-sexing operation were removed just before I brought her home, so she hadn't been at the SPCA long.


After bringing her home, it took her less than five minutes to discover there was another person in the house - Nigel, in bed asleep after working the previous night - jump on top of him and wake him by rubbing his face.  Something she still does today.


She's always been extremely independent (even for a cat!) and good at making herself feel at home.  When she was still new to us, we twice had people several houses away call (having found our phone number on her collar), worried that she'd run away from us as she'd been in their gardens all day.  What one woman didn't realise was that Tabby had come home for dinner and then gone back, long before she called!  We lived in a well-built-up area, with other flats close by, and I had at least two neighbours tell me that they'd woken during the night to find Tabby asleep on their bed with their own cat.  I didn't realise the significance at the time, that those other cats never came into our house - Tabby didn't allow it!



When we were preparing to move to Kaiwaka, I was concerned about how she would adjust to country life, especially how she might be a threat to the chooks (chickens) we'd have - only to be quickly reassured that chooks are quite capable of protecting themselves from cats.  To this day, Tabby is wary of the chooks and will not come inside if there is a chook on the back doorstep.


Needless to say, Tabby's protection of her own space has continued in our new home in Kaiwaka.  She has never (eight years and counting at the time of writing this) accepted Joseph as a member of our household.  She hisses and howls at Joseph whenever she sets eyes on him - and he beats her up whenever he gets the opportunity.  Being twice her size, he often makes a good job of it and the vet has gained good fees as a result.  She doesn't linger making her way through the house, except to have a bite to eat under the sideboard, and her inside life is exclusively in the bedroom, often in the cupboard above the wardrobe, which Joseph hasn't worked out how to get to.  He did work out her refuge on the roof.


When she is in the mood she is a very loving cat, who enjoys face rubs and when relaxed will roll over to have her belly rubbed.  She is happiest when she has both of us together - if she has only one, the purr volume goes up when the other walks in the room!


Update 17 October 2008:


The vet has been to visit us today, and put Tabby to sleep.  She'd had breathing difficulties over the past few months, which this week had progressed to where she no longer enjoyed her life.  She is buried here at our home in Kaiwaka, near to Wilma and Mitzi.



"The door will open on my command, and my people will stop laughing at me!"


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