Being kitteh-mommy to an ancient cat requires care and attention. I have a few criteria for determining if Misha is still healthy and happy.
1. Is she sleeping comfortably?
It would appear so. Comfortably by cat standards, certainly. She has established a wonderful routine in the mornings where she crawls under the covers and tucks up against my tummy for an hour or two before it’s time to really wake up. Of course, she’s been demanding cuddles more often, which makes anything but reading a bit difficult, but I needed to get quite a lot of research done anyway. I sneak in computer time when I can.
2. Is she curious?
At times, she’ll arrange herself somewhere she can get a good look at me, and stare with that disapproving superiority only cats can manage so well. So I suppose that counts. And she comes out to the kitchen when I’m in there and asks why her human heating pad is selfishly feeding itself rather than performing its cat-warming duties. She also likes to poke around the bathroom every so often. So yes, curiosity seems intact.
3. Can she bathe self and others?
We knew it was time to take our old granny cat for her final shot when she could no longer keep herself clean, so I’ve been keeping an eye on Misha’s bathing habits. So far, she’s doing a fine job on herself, and has enough energy left over to give me a good scrubbing, too.
4. Is she eating?
I think they coat the Whiskas Temptations treats in the feline equivalent to crack. She’ll always eat a few of those. I got her a different cat food, and she’ll eat a bit of that on her own sometimes. I mix her food with treats, and sometimes feed her a kibble at a time if she’s not eating out of the dish, and so she gets her calories. She’ll also eat a bit of cheese and finish off my milk. So, typical old-cat finicky behavior. I ordered a high-calorie paste per your suggestions, and we’ll see what she thinks of it.
5. Is she still being a pain in the ass?
She’s doing very well in the PITA department. She’ll insist on being cuddled when I’m starving to death, have a bursting bladder, or need to get actual work done. When I escape her and attend to my needs, she follows me around looking miffed. When I return to my work, she does her best to intervene. Here I am trying to take notes. Here she is making that impossible.
6. Is she still capable of cuteness?
Yes, she still manages to be totes adorbs even when she’s busy making it difficult for me to get any work done. Here you can see her rubbing her little face all over my clipboard and bumping her head against it while I write. Completely sweet.
7. Does she still enjoy a good scritchin?
Yup. She loves her scritches.
8. Does she still do hilarious things?
Ja, definitely. She fell asleep with her little chin on the tablet, which had no idea what to do with the input. On the one hand, she interferes with getting work done. On the other hand, hilarious. I manage to get things done regardless.
It looks like we’ll make it a bit longer before we have to take that drive for the final shot. I’m pretty sure she’ll make it to 21 at this rate. I doubt she’ll see 22, but then, last year around this time, I didn’t think she’d make it another year, so I’m not putting any money on it. I do hope she lives for another summer, so she can get plenty of quality porch time and sunbeams before she goes.