Taming the Tigers, I Mean the Grandcats


Lola, Gillie and Sassafras

Have you ever had two Bengal Tigers in your house as pets?

Our grandcats, in their home environment, seemed to be credible creatures. You have to understand, Lola, the Pomeranian and our granddog regards the two grandcats as her cats. When it was time for Lola to come over here, then we thought her cats should come with her, Sassafras, known as Sass, and Gilley.

Lola’s cats do not look like Bengal Tigers. They only act like Bengal tigers, without the roar. They pace through the house, looking for what I’m not sure. They are curious about every open door, and go through it. Exactly what there is about an empty bathtub I don’t know, but they explored that.

They went under every bed, behind every piece of furniture, jumped on top of every piece of furniture, played a piano that the keys had not been covered, and went to bed before everybody else did so they could get up at 6:00 A. M. to get everybody else up.

When we shooed them from the furniture on at least two occasions each, they took flying leaps to the floor, in such spectacular fashion we thought they each used up one of their nine lives, and would henceforth be known as the cats with eight lives. The thought did enter our minds that we would equip them each with a cat parachute, but alas, we couldn’t find one even on the Internet that has everything.

Gilley and Sass are brother and sister. When they get on the bed, Gilley licks Sass’s face clean, then Sass does the same for Gilley. They sleep right beside each other, and often times Sass will put one paw over Gilley’s back demonstrating the fact it is good to have a brother that came along with her in her adoption.

Her parents chose not to hide the fact they were adopted, and told them up front. That produced a couple of stares, but that was the extent of the excitement.

After observing our grandcats for five days my wife made a keen observation, which I must agree with. Gilley sees what mischief there is to be done, and puts Sass up to doing them. A conspiracy, if you will.

The first couple of days Gilley and Sass were here, they decided we were different people than the ones they were used to seeing, and had to adjust to the slower pace of life my wife and I lead. They decided they did not want to adjust, and went full speed at their other life.

We did find if we fed them early, they ran through the house at 50 mph rather than 100 mph. What their destination was we never figured out, but to them the journey was fun.

Gilley never befriended me on a personal basis, perhaps at a distance he thought I was worthy of second thought, but Sass on about the third day became convinced I was her personal petter. I’m not sure how she knew, but when I was at the computer writing a story and came to the intense point in the story, it was at that point Sass came over and put her paw on my arm to pull my arm down to pet her, and I forgot the point I was trying to make in the story. I never figured out why Sass would not jump in my lap for me to pet her with both hands. She preferred going from side to side to either pull my left hand or right hand down on a single petting basis.

Even though Lola considered both Gilley and Sass to be her cats, that did not mean the chase was not on. Exactly how this Nascar non-sanctioned event took place we’re not sure. Suddenly we would hear one or both of the cats high-tailing it through the house with Lola in hot pursuit. Finally after a couple of minutes the chase would be over.

Lola has a chair in our house in the computer room that is her chair. No human being is permitted to sit in it, and no cat named Gilley or Sass is allowed to lie down on it. I’m quite certain Lola in whatever language dogs and cats speak communicated that fact to Gilley and Sass. Naturally Sass got up in Lola’s chair, and turned over on her back, with her paws up in the air to await Lola’s discovery she was there.

Lola springs up in the chair and straddles Sass. Those two front paws and claws are staring Lola in the face. Lola jabs back and forth with her face with no success. She goes in full frontal, and Sass’s front paws and claws close in on Lola’s face before Lola jerks back to a safety zone. Lola repeats the process with no luck, then a third time with the same results. Lola finally decides she will allow Sass temporary occupancy of her chair, and jumps down. Sass having won that battle, jumps down from Lola’s chair immediately.

Changing cats’ litter box is a simple matter? Right? No. If Sass was within sight when I started to change the litter box, she decided she had to go to the bathroom again. I had to wait until she finished to finally clean the box. I said within sight. It only had to be within hearing distance. I guess changing a litter box makes a certain sound, and Sass was right there within seconds.

When Lola and Sass and Gilley went home, the silence was deafening. No Sass and Gilley flying past our faces. No Lola in hot pursuit of her cats. No Sass pulling my hand down to pet her while I sat at the computer.

My wife and I might have Lola and Sass and Gilley over again, after we have returned from two weeks at the rest home.


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