Saturday, January 13, 2007

Fluffer ~ Circa 1959

I got Fluffer when he was a tiny ball of buff brick-colored fur. We had him for 14 years, and so he was definitely a member of the family. Mom took this pic of him in our backyard, looking intently at something rustling in the ivy. He kept our area mouse-free and probably rid it of a few other varmints too.

Fluffer was "the brother" to my female dog Kippy, and although Fluffer was there first, he was gracious enough to the small pup that invaded his territory. Kippy wanted to play, you see, and Fluffer was already an adult cat who had chores to do and things to see about. He didn't have time to play with an upstart pup everyday; especially one that nipped at his tail and barked in his ears. It was fun to watch them interact, and sometimes I had to intervene and hold Kippy back when it was obvious that one more swat or bark would elicit an attack from Fluffer, one that Kippy would need band-aids after.

Eventually, Kippy grew up and while they still played together, it was a more stylized form of play and not hurtful. I recall them on the living room floor in front of the fireplace. Fluffer would "attack" Kippy (who was lying on her back with paws up") and after biting for a few moments on the underside of Kippy's tender neck, Fluffer would begin to lick the area he had bitten. Then they would curl up together, in front of the fire, and sleep. It was too cute.

At the age of 14, Fluffer was almost totally deaf in one ear, but he was still active and playful. The day before he died, he played with a small wad of paper tied to the line of a fishing pole. He chased it for an hour, as active and determined as any young cat to catch it. He never lost interest in it, and would have continued had we not gotten tired of the game ourselves.

The next day, on one of his daily jaunts around the neighborhood, he was hit by a car which approached on his deaf side. The driver knew him, and brought his lifeless body to my mom. We were all devastated. I couldn't even go to school the next day, and so I skipped classes to mourn for my constant companion.

This cat is the one I think of when someone says "cat". I have had many, many cats in the years since Fluffer died, but this one spells cat to me. I still miss him.
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20 comments: said...

Judy, rest assured that when the day comes and you walk through the gates of heaven, Fluffer is going to be the first little kitty waiting there to greet you.

Beverly said...

My eyes are wet reading about your kitty. My cat died of old age(18) a couple of years ago, and I haven't decided whether to get another one or not. I do miss having another living thing in my house, though.

Anonymous said...

He sounds like a fantastic cat to me and I am not surprised that you still miss him.

I love the photo of him gazing at something off to the side that migth require his attention. Your story of Fluffer and Kipper is lovely.

Michele sent me to say Hi this time.

OldOldLady Of The Hills said...

Oh I understand still missing a king gone "special-in-your-heart" cat...Fluffer sure was beautiful and I loved reading about the relationship of your kity and your dog Kippy....So sweet that they would end up sleeping together...Do you have any pictures of these two while sleeping? Would love to see those, too.

Anonymous said...

I had a great cat when I was a kid. All black one named Inky.

She got pregnant and my Dad took her to live on "a farm".

Whenever I'd ask if we could stop by "the farm" to visit when we were on our Sunday family drives, Dad would say, "They aren't home today." I finally got the idea and stopped asking.

rosemary said...

I didn't receive the gift of a cat until I was well into my 30's. I had always had dogs. When I lost my first kitty, Babie when she was 18(so named because my kids called her mom's babie) it was as if I had lost a member of the fact I did. Babie was my "cat" personified. Beautiful post.

PI said...

I love to see family cats and dogs play together and could watch them for hours.

Raggedy said...

Awwwwwwww. Extra hugs for you today. I have a dog that holds the same place in my heart that fluffer did for you. I have also owned many since but there is a very special place reserved for Sham. Amazing how we remember them so dearly and clearly after they are long, long, gone.

Have a wonderful day!
(=':'=) hugs
(")_ (")Š from
the Cool Raggedy one

Carmi said...

What a beautifully worded memory of a very special pet.

I can see where you get your photographic gift from. Your mom had a wonderful eye: capturing a furry animal in mixed and extreme shade is no easy feat.

Chancy said...

I know the feeling of losing that "one special pet"

You just never forget them.

Shephard said...

What a pretty cat. Sweet story. Those things really choke me up too. Losing the furry loved ones is always traumatic. I'm glad you have that photo of him.


Anonymous said...

You really can tell a wonderful story Judy. Thanks for sharing that with us.

Anonymous said...

%$$#%^^ Blogger!

Let's try this again...

That's a very touching story Judy. It brought back memories of a long past pet of my youth - a Dalmatian with too few spots to show, his name was Benjie.

Michele sent me,


kimbofo said...

What a lovely post. And the photo is adorable!

vicki said...

Oh, poor sweet Fluffer! But he lived a long time and left good memories so- good deal, yes?

I'm impressed with this photograph, given the date and technology. So you come by your photographic skills naturally!

Mike said...

What a wonderful story. We also had a cat that was the "mother" to our golden retriever

Anonymous said...

Aw. Nothing like the first cat. I got a cat from my brother named Boo. PSYCHO. It used to claw at my wife. We got her declawed to prevent injury and the damn thing resorted to biting.

It would freak out so badly, we had to give her up when my son was a few months old - fearing for his safety.

I still miss her.

Here via michele today, Kenny.

PS I'm glad you got a kick out of my ghost post.

sophie said...

Spencer and Percy don't get along quite so well as your canine/feline pair did.

Our first cat was a siamese who hated everyone except for Mother and me. She lived to the ripe old age of 16. Thanks for making me think of her today.

srp said...

I have always wanted a cat who didn't mind a dog and a dog that would not try to eat the cats. Max likes to be in the company of our cats but I still don't trust him. Fluffy was adorable and I can see how he made his home in your heart. I still miss my very first "all my own" cat Shamroc, another Siamese who lived to be 19. He thought he was a dog, ate dog jerky treats and jumped into your arms from the floor. He was the best traveler I've ever had, slept on a pillow in the front seat, and made the 24 hour trip between Oklahoma City and Virginia several times. They always keep their space in our hearts.... our hearts are just big enough to hold more than one.

Anonymous said...

The cat I think of when I hear the word cat is our cat Charlie. I would answer to Charlie, Charles or Chuck. He was a world class mouser even with out his front claws! He passed away 10 years ago from a brain tumor. I miss him like you miss Fluffer.