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Happy Smudgeversary!

As I type this, it is one year to the minute (2230) since Spirit alerted me to a fluffy, spitty little treasure in my backyard. I’ve been so tired all day that I actually forgot all about it until about an hour ago, just when I was packing myself up for bed. Unsurprisingly, I was packing myself up for bed at the time that night as well, and had to go out in my slippers and jammies to see why Spirit was making so much noise.

She’d woo-woo’d me all through my shower, and kept woo-woo’ing until I came outside – a little bit cross, if I recall – to have her herd me all the way to the back end of my backyard. There’s a chain fence divider as part of the old dog run the separates my yard from the rear fence, and she kept pushing her nose through the holes. And every time she did, I heard a funny little hissy-spit sound. Eventually I saw the tiniest bundle of black and white fluff hiding in a tuft of grass.
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Smudge Loves Spirit [videos]

Spirit doesn’t like to come inside too often. My polished wood floor is slippery for her old joints, and there’s at least one playful cat who can’t leave her alone to sleep.

Personally, I would prefer it if she was an inside-all-the-time (except while walking and/or pooping) dog, but my landlords aren’t especially keen on animals. (Which is hard for me to understand when children are far more destructive!)

Knowing that I’ll lose her soon, and having permission from my landlords to let her in since the cold weather isn’t helping her poor old bones, I invite her in every time I go past the back door, or when I need to bring in some firewood. Most of the time she looks in, sees EnormousCat (who doesn’t like her at all) and politely declines. Sometimes I’ll shoo EC away and she’ll still politely decline, possibly discouraged the stairs. Still, I persist. I want her inside, by the fire, snoozing happily.

Today, since it was raining hard, she accepted my invitation without encouragement, but was still anxious of the floor and Smudge, who was, as ever, so excited to see her. Spirit was, afterall, the one to bring him into our lives.

She only stayed in for a little while the first time – for the last hour or so she’s been snoozing by the fire. When she left, Smudge sat at the back door, sulking and waiting for her to come back. He doesn’t seem to care how much bigger she is, or that she could snap him in half with a nip, or squash him with a misplaced foot (easily done since she has trouble placing them these days). Spirit, on the other hand, is perpetually anxious about squashing him and wanting him to stay clear, not at all sure how the pack dynamics change inside the house with a kitten in the mix. But she’s so gentle and indulgent, and Smudge is just besotted.

Video evidence of a kitten adoring a dog (with silly youtube music). :D

Smudge Vs GW2

Smudge doesn’t like to be left out of anything.

I’ve never had a cat who pays this much attention to what’s happening on my screen, yet pays no attention to his reflection in a mirror.

This time my phone was within reach so I could capture his cuteness for posterity!

His name is Smudge.

Three weeks after Monster died, Spirit (my dog) alerted me to this little guy in my back yard. He couldn’t have been more than three weeks old.

Spirit probably interrupted his mother while she was relocating her litter, and she wasn’t likely to come back soon. Spirit would have picked him up and brought him to me if she could reach him. Instead, at 2230 on a chilly night, she called me out in my jammies and slippers.

I think this belongs to you!

Smudge is doing great. Against the odds and without his mother he’s thriving and moving in to my broken heart. He’s not my beloved Monster, whom I miss every day, but he sleeps on my pillow and follows me everywhere. I fed him special formula at all hours of the day and night, kept him close and warm, and stopped crying for a while.

He’s just what I needed when I needed it most.

I’ve been meaning to write a farewell post for Monster for almost three months now, but I can’t. I can’t even face his ashes just yet. But there will be a picture-laden ode to my old friend soon.


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