I'm not a cat person. Not really. I don't dislike them at all but I've never owned one (or been owned by one), nor have I ever really had the desire. Cats are just too independent... too aloof... too, well, snooty for me. And up until just recently, I was allergic to them. Touching a critter of the feline persuasion caused my eyes to swell shut and my nose to run like a faucet. Not pleasant. It seems I've outgrown the allergy, though (and it's a good thing, as you'll soon see). Anyway, I've always been of the give me a sweet, slobbery, goofy pooch any day attitude.
However... I might be changing that attitude.
Everyone, meet Peeto. Peeto, meet everyone.
Cute, huh? Peeto is not my cat. Honest. Peeto, however, might not know this. He actually belongs to our across-the-street neighbor. He used to be her 'inside cat' (along with his brother, Toby) but for some reason, the boys have become her 'outside cats' and they roam the neighborhood freely. In the warmer months, they spent a lot of time in our yard, terrorizing the birds and playing with Sundance. Really. He loves them. Or he did... when they were our neighbor's outside cats. Now? Peeto seems to have become our inside cat. Or inside/outside cat, actually.
It started when the weather got colder. Peeto would shoot in the front door when I let Sundance out (Toby shows up once in a while, but not so often as his brother). Ryan loves this (she is a cat person and has always wanted one) and since he was in fairly often, we did what any reasonable animal lovers would do... we bought food. Yup. You guessed it. Peeto started showing up more often. A lot more often. Now? If Sundance hasn't gone out in a while, Peeto just knocks on the storm door... and of course, I open it. If that doesn't work? He shows up at whatever window I'm closest to (I can't tell you how many times he's nearly given me a coronary when I'm doing the dishes!).
And he's started to make himself very, very comfortable...
As I mentioned, Sundance really likes the cats. Actually, I've wondered if he might wonder if they're even cats. They sort of act like dogs. As soon as they see him (or us), they plop down, roll over, and expose their bellies for rubbing. I've never seen a cat do that. My dog, though? Does it all the time. Sundance likes to paw at them and they grab his feet with their kitty paws and hold on. It's pretty cute. Sometimes they even lay down together and snuggle. That is, when they're outside. When they're inside, Sundance isn't so sure what to think. He's a pretty jealous boy by nature and when we're at the park, I'm not even allowed to pet any other dogs (though he's allowed to be petted by their owners... not quite sure how that works). Anyway, since it's been so incredibly cold, I can't bring myself to put Peeto outside at night (but I also won't give him full access to the house), so he's started sleeping with me... and Sundance. He always starts out on the wicker chair in my room. Sundance usually looks at him - and then me - quite plaintively, as if to say, "Really, Mom? Again?"
Then he gives him a snuffle...
And, finally, gives me the (tentative) OK.
I think Sundance would like it a lot better if Peeto would just stay on the chair. Truth be told, so would I. I'm not used to a critter climbing all over my furniture in the middle of the night. Or sleeping on my head. But we're getting used to each other.
And I think I might be turning into a cat person.