Tigger

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Tigger lounging on the fireplace without a care in the world!

Tigger lounging on the fireplace without a care in the world!

This is a picture of my eldest daughter Tigger. We named her that because she looks like a ‘tiger’ with her stripes and she bounces through the house like Tigger does.

When we got her we had a choice of her or her two sisters. She kept hiding in the back of the cage and wouldn’t let us touch her. Her sisters on the other hand were all over my husband and me. That’s how I picked her. I said I want the one in the back that is scared and hiding.

People say that when you have kids you learn on the first one and therefore are better parents for the later ones. That is so true. Poor Tigger we put her through Hell and made a number of mistakes with her.

On the way home, on the day we got her, she started to cry in the little carry box they gave us. So stupidly I took her out of the box in the car. Mistake # 1. Well she was quicker than I was and jumped onto the dashboard. We had a Neon at the time which had a huge dashboard. She took one look through it at all the traffic and I thought her little head would explode. Needless to say she quickly decided the little carry box wasn’t so bad after all.

When we got her back to the apartment we immediately let her out of the carry box. Mistake #2 Introduce you new child to your apartment/house one room at a time so that you don’t overwhelm them. Our apartment consisted of a livingroom/dining room, kitchen, bathroom, and two bedrooms. All the doors were open and she had full rein of the apartment. Well Tigger flipped out!! She ran around hiding under things as we tried to catch her. Then she ran into the kitchen and found a small hole at the bottom in the corner of the cabinets and proceeded to climb into it. Mistake # 3 Kitten proof the house/apartment BEFORE you bring home your new addition. I panicked, mainly because I thought we’d never see Tigger again. We had no idea where that hole went. We figured she was in the pipe system three apartments away. Oh yeah, I failed to mention. We weren’t supposed to have pets in the apartment. So calling the Super wasn’t the greatest idea. What we ended up doing is putting down a plate of food by the opening and coaxing her out that way. It took a while but it worked and we immediately closed up that hole.

The first night with her we decided to camp on in the living room with the sleeping bags. This was because it was her first night home and she was remained under the couch. We figured if we were close she might come out from under the couch. No such luck. The only thing we got was a backache from sleeping on the floor.

Time went on and Tigger finally got used to us but was still very skittish. She wouldn’t let any of us pick her up and she wouldn’t come to you if you called her. She liked to hide and then you had to seek. (I should have realized then that she was TRAINING US)

At night my husband and I would tell her goodnight and go to bed, closing our bedroom door. Well Tigger hated the closed door and proceeded to put a hole in the carpet by the door. We thought she was just acting out, she really just wanted to come in with us. Mistake #4 Listen to them when they are trying to tell you something. We didn’t and we had a chunk of carpet we had to replace before we moved.

Back then we considered Tigger our special needs child. She needed extra love and affection but on her terms. (Again with the education).

When Tigger was a year old, we decided to get her a sibling to play with. I was in my 3rd year of law school and my husband was working full time and Tigger seemed bored. Even with a little sister Tigger didn’t really get over her skittishness.

It’s actually taken years of giving her love and support when she wants it. Now she is actually the best adjusted child we have. She comes to her name, loves attention, helps me type this blog, and hates any closed door.

Any meaning even the bathroom door. If you close it all the way you’ll see this little paw wave at you from under the door as she tries to open it. If you leave it open a little bit, then she can walk in and out as she chooses. If it’s not open enough, she has no qualms with using her paw to open it more so that she fits inside.

With regards to her interaction with her siblings, with her sister who is only a year younger she acts like a mom, with her brother who is 4 years younger she actually sees him as a playmate. They love to chase each other through the house. Well Tigger runs and Riley chases her. I’m not sure how much fun Tigger actually has but she plays good. Her new thing is that if they get anywhere near our bedroom during their little ‘marathon’ she loves to jump up on our bed, run across us and dive off the other side. Her brother runs around the bed on the floor losing precious time and she can easily get away from him. Of course a cat bouncing over your bed in the middle of the night isn’t that much fun for us, especially since we have a full-motion waterbed so it really bounces us around.

Since our children are indoor only cats, we tried them on ‘cat grass’ as a treat many years ago. It looks like a little tray of grass that they munch on. It helps their digestive system so they don’t get hairballs etc. Well when I was at the lawfirm I would grow it in my office (I got a lot of comments about the WEED I was growing). Tigger wouldn’t let me grow it at home because as soon as she saw a sprout she’d pull it out and eat it. Well stores around here (PetSmart and Petco) sell little containers of it. Tigger munches on that stuff like there is no tommorow. The other two kids could care less. Tigger is hilarious with it. Sometimes she’ll put her paw in it to hold it down so she can pull a long strand of grass out. When it starts to die (lasts about a week) she pulls it out of the container. She eats it on one of the hutches – she knows that’s where the cat grass goes. If you walk to the hutch with a bag from PetSmart she knows what it is and beats you to the hutch. Then when you replace the old with the new she glares at you for touching her old one. But the funniest thing she does is when she decides it’s time for a new one. She’ll get the grass out of the container and she’ll throw it off the hutch onto the floor. Leaving this clump of dead grass with yellow roots and dirt. Sometimes she keeps the grass and throws the container.

The one thing that I’ve learned with the 3 kids is that each are unique in their mannerisms, their needs and desires etc.

So that’s a little bit about Tigger. Watch for another post on Calie.

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