The merger is complete as far as the cats are concerned. Cats pass one another in the hall without a second look. At any given moment there are cats sprawled all over the living room in various states of repose and they interact as if they were old friends.
The turning point occurred a few days ago when Buffy brought in a fully functioning mouse which she let loose. The visiting cats joined in a chase which lasted for about a half an hour.
Hilarity ensued because the cats were not very coordinated and the mouse escaped under the hearth. The chase was a bonding activity and the cats are no longer acting in isolation.
Sherman stayed quite aloof from this circus and watched without joining in. Late that night, I was working away at the computer and Sherman came out and sat quietly by me for a few minutes. Then he darted off and returned with the mouse which he quickly dispatched and left for me to dispose of. He was definitely showing off. None of this fancy footwork and scrambling around like the new cats in the house. He just let me know that he had not lost his skills as a predator even if he is deficient in the feline social skills department.
He stays out of sight most of the time and only comes out for meals and to show off. Last night, around midnight, I let him out in the rain and he was back in ten minutes with a freshly killed bird! Where he found it I cannot imagine.
Meanwhile the more domesticated felines have joined forces to assist Gretchen recover from Bronchitis. I looked in on her this afternoon as she was resting and she had cats snuggled up on both sides. One was Buffy and the other was Marjorie’s Black and White cat.
Our cats notice our illnesses and respond by staying close to us until we recover. Having Marjorie’s cat participate in this routine was heartwarming, to say the least.
We are all doing our best to get through bouts of sneezing and coughing and pet affection goes a long way toward making life easier.
Cats and dogs offer an amazing amount of personal support when we are not at our best.