There is no doubt that we love our cats and are often asked how Murfee and Maggee entered our lives.
The story is simple and started years earlier with an agreement. When Jason and I began dating we agreed that someday we would adopt a cat (or two) when we would purchase a home and not have roommates. Flash forward to a couple of years later and we were in the middle of making an offer on our first house. We decided that if our offer was accepted we would start looking for a cat to join our lives. We scoured the shelter site, and waited until we moved in the house, but not quite settled. Once we adopted Murfee we knew he needed a buddy, and that brought Maggee into our lives.
Murfee was only 1 day old and this runt of the litter was found alone in a field, without a mom or sibling near. The story goes that a worker had heard his tiny mews and kitten noises, and he was brought to the local shelter. The shelter ended up taking him in and bottle feeding him, and giving him everything he needed at the start of kittens life. When we adopted him at 9 weeks old he was so small that he was able to fit in my husband’s palm. We would marvel that not only did he survive but was found, and even now count it a miracle. As he aged the mystery became less, and his strong that enabled him to be be found began to become evident. We used to call him 4-wheel-drive because he would go anywhere despite the terrain in front of him – clothes, dishes, pillows, humans – he did not care.
Even at almost 5 years old now, he still has that will and that independence that we know allowed him to survive those hours before he was found. Murfee has many little thing’s that make him who he is but one of our favorites is his eyes. One eye is green and the other eye is 3/4 green and 1/4 blue. The other thing we love is that his under chest has the cutest patch of brown fur with black spots! Murfee was named after the stadium in which the Chargers used to play, Jack Murphy Stadium in San Diego.
Murfee is becoming a calmer cat as he ages, but one thing he does not do is sleep! I have never met a cat that sleeps as little as Murf, even as a kitten. In an average day he only sleeps 12 hours or less – he is always awake and always wanting to know what his humans are doing. He tolerates being held as long has he has freedom of movement – human shoulders included. I have also never met a pickier cat, despite a consistent food type and a variety of treats (wet and dry) offered he at times mounts a protest about the food. The one exception is that he loves cheddar and chicken wet food, but even that tends to be a thing he protests at times. He seems to like dairy treats, and cheese-its! He is a reserved cat when we have company and really shy’s away from people he does not know. The exception to this is Jason’s BFF Chris, Murfee seems to really like him.
When we decided on a friend, we returned to the shelter that gave Murfee such great care when he was so young. When we passed where Maggee was being held she meowed the strongest meow her little body would allow and it forced us to stop and look. We immediately were taken with her adorable and expressive eyes and we asked to spend some time with her. The FIRST thing she did when we got in the room was jumped into my husband’s lap, followed by jumping into mine. I think she was choosing us, and outgoing nature allowed us to play with her for almost an hour. I asked the shelter if they could hold her overnight for us, and for some reason they went against the protocol and held her for us. The next morning first thing we did was drove and adopted our little girl.
When we arrived home, we were not sure what Murfee would think. He was always a easy-going sweet boy, the kind of cat that did not attack or growl and we wanted to retain that. The advice we got was to introduce them slowly but we decided we wanted to see how a cold introduction would go. We put the carrier with Maggee in the middle of the floor, opened the top and let nature happen. We had 2 growls, more about a new cat being in Murfee’s home, and that was it – we actually left the house 30 minutes after that initial introduction because it was like they knew each other all along and were already getting along.
Flash forward 3 years, and while Maggee and Murfee are not the best of friends, they are certainly not enemies. At times we catch them sleeping together and when Murfee goes to the litter box and water, Maggee is usually close behind. Maggee grooms him, and he grooms her.
There is no denying that they are different cats. Maggee is a very different cat than her brother and the one thing is that she sleeps almost 20 hours a day, it blows us away! The other difference is that Maggee eats everything and loves everybody. I can put almost any cat food in front of her and she will at least give it a try. The problem is that she will “goldfish” herself (goldfish tend to eat until they die if you let them) and is always down to eat – a food motivated cat. Maggee also loves to be held, and she absolutely loves to be carried around the house. Maggee was named after the real life name of a actress that was killed off our favorite show Sons of Anarchy. We did not like the characters name on the show – Tara, but we loved her real name of Maggie.
We are lucky in that neither cat has any food aggression, and we can pet them and give them kisses when they eat. Each of them knew about the litter box from day one and we have never had an out of litter box accident. We live in a peaceful home, and let water be the disciplinarian when they are being less than perfect, but really this is a rare occasion.
We view ourselves as guardians and only let them outside supervised by one or both of us. Since they have little interaction outside, we provide inside to watch birds, have many toys for stimulation, and they even have their own teddy bear that they have grown up with.
We often say that our house came alive when we adopted the cats and that is really the best description. We love them and we are pretty sure they love us – even if they don’t always show it.
Do you have a Gotcha! story – share it with me below!