Talk about a blended family! Canine cutie Katy may be outnumbered by Marilyne's four feline friends and Tommy's two black cats, but she still considers herself the luckiest dog on the block!
Marilyne's daughter Heather explains that Katy dog spent the first two years of her life "neglected and abused, confined to a cage barely big enough for her to turn around in and located in a hot and dark garage in Florida. When Mom learned of her existence from someone that lived next door to Katy, Mom insisted she get Katy or she would report the family to Animal Services. (From what we've pieced together, we think that the husband had a violent temper, and that the wife probably put the dog in the garage 'for her own protection'. Katy is frightened of large men, and even growled at a big guy with a broom in his hands once.) Katy now lives the best life any dog could ask for, and she is the sweetest and most well-behaved dog I've ever known. Very smart. I consider her 'my little sister'. She and my dog Zook are best friends!
"The black and white cat playing guitar is Mittens. She is an old girl now, but she and her brother Georges were both found at my Mom's shortly after Hurricane Georges in 1998. Georges went to a different home, but polydactal Mittens became my Mom's first cat. Mittens doesn't like other cats, but loves dogs, and loves music! She always jumps up with Tommy when he plays guitar.
"On Mom's shoulders is Smudge (I named him). We trapped Smudge in a squirrel humane trap when he was just a little baby. He'd been crying under Mom's house, but wouldn't come out where we could grab him. After Mom caught him, we found Smudge had a bacterial infection that needed treatment and Mom was worried about Mittens being exposed to him. So I fostered Smudge for his first few weeks, as I was already treating a couple of kittens that I had taken in. Smudge's bacterial infection caused him to have a little "gassy" issue that led my boyfriend and I to nickname him 'Gaseous Clay'.
"In Mom's lap on the right is Mee-chan (aka Junior). He was another rescued kitten. A few years ago, Mee-chan sneaked through a door just as Mom closed it, and his tail was cut off (*cringe*). So the poor guy has a 3/4 tail now. He's a lover. He loves everyone, cats, dogs, people- whatever.
"On the left is the latest addition, Bobbi. I think he was probably about a year old when he was found, and was an unneutered male. So he has a big, masculine head. He was born without a tail. He can be a little standoff-ish with strangers, but loves Mom!
"Tommy's two cats were also rescues. The one behind his shoulder is Muff, and she was his neighbor's cat. When his neighbor died, her son put Muff outside and Tommy began to care for her. The other cat is Midnight. She is very sweet with people, but very aggressive with other animals. She is an absolute nut! Hyper, always on the go. She showed up one day with one of the strays at Tommy's work."
As you might be able to tell, daughter Heather is a devoted animal lover too! You can read all about her own "Zoo Crew" at her delightful blog Heather's Eden.
Happy Valentines Day!