Back in August, I welcomed Spider the cat into my home. So how did that all work out?
That’s Spider lounging in his basement room, aka the chess room. To judge from the liberal coating of cat hair, I’d say he likes that futon quite a lot. Spider’s not much of a jumper, so I have no fear that he’s going to jump on the table and bat the chess pieces around.
Here he is wrapped up in the mattress cover he uses as a sleeping bag. That’s one of his favorite places to sleep. If he looks a bit nonplussed in this picture it’s because I just woke him up.
Spider is a very timid cat, and it’s been a long trek getting him to the point where he is completely comfortable with me. He spends most of his time in that basement room, but periodically he comes to the base of the stairs to summon me. Recently he’s been coming upstairs more and more frequently, which is a very happy development. Nowadays it’s not uncommon for me to walk into the kitchen and find this:
Why is such a big deal that he’s coming upstairs more frequently? Because my other cat, Emily, patrols the upstairs diligently. Here she is watching my neighbors shovel their driveway:
Emily has made her feelings toward Spider perfectly clear. She. Does. Not. Like. Him. The cats effectively divided up the house among themselves, with Emily getting the upstairs and Spider getting the downstairs. And when Emily sees Spider? Hissing, growling, posturing and other sorts of kitty mayhem. I’ve tried explaining to Spider that Emily is all hiss and no scratch, but no dice. Slowly, though, he seems to be less and less impressed with Emily, and that is why he now comes upstairs pretty regularly.
And then there’s this:
Emily turned her head just as I took the picture, but moments before she was looking right at Spider. And she wasn’t hissing! They can actually be in the same room now without fireworks, as long as Spider doesn’t actually look at her. And even when she does hiss, it tends to be a bit perfunctory, like she doesn’t have her heart in it anymore. At any rate, after a full minute of no hissing, I gave Emily the two-fisted knuckle pet and praised her lavishly. That creeped her out though, and she jumped down from the table and left the room.
So, we’ve come a long way, but we still have a long way to go!