I go crazy over anything cat-related, it’s true. And I’ve picked up my fair share of kittens off the streets. But I only have five cats!
The queen of our cattery is Botchok. I picked her up when I was in college in UP Diliman. It was 2000, and she was a feisty, loud little thing. I found a discarded cell phone box and brought her to class, then around campus, and finally home. She’s grumpy and short and still feisty, and I like to think of her as my familiar.
Spot is our black cat. He had a brother named Snowball, and sometimes even we couldn’t tell them apart. Snowball liked to escape the house and explore the neighborhood, and a badly broken leg took his life in 2008. Spot is a quiet cat who has some sort of thyroid problem. In the summer months he loses his fur, and year-round his body temperature is higher than that of all the other cats. We think this is why the other cats like snuggling up to him.
When we got married in 2010, a friend gave us a Siamese cat as a wedding present. Bunny was a darling, darling cat, very sweet and affectionate. He passed away in 2011, on the exact same day as Oneal’s mom. He left behind three offspring: Hedwig and Scabbers who were born of Socks; and Botchok’s kitten, Sushi. Sushi now lives with my best friend Dante and his girlfriend Caroline. Hedwig and Scabbers stayed with us. Hedwig is the fattest cat we have ever had in the entire history of our cat parenting. We haven’t weighed him lately, but I’m pretty sure he’s over 15 lbs. He’s not just fat. He’s big and stocky. Even his head is big, and his tail is very thick. I can’t pick him up anymore. If he walks on you, there is no ignoring him. Because he’s half-Siamese, Hedwig has very interesting coloring. He was white as snow when he was born, but now his fur is turning grey.
Scabbers on the other hand is slender, and a beautiful grey. I don’t know if that color is called dove grey, but I think in feline parlance the correct term is blue. She’s a bit neurotic, and doesn’t really ask for attention. But if you scratch her head or her back without startling her, she seems to enjoy it. She has this funny habit of meowing with her mouth closed.
Sweetheart is so named because she is the sweetest thing. Oneal thinks she imprinted on me when she appeared in our garage on Christmas Eve of 2014. We picked her up and brought her to the cattery, and she learned to co-exist with our other cats. She’s really affectionate, and her favorite playmate is Kuya Hedwig. They hang out together so often that I’ve taken to calling them Baymax and Hairy Baby, after the robot and the cat in Big Hero 6.
I guess you could say these cats are our babies.