(CH Tuff Stuff of Supurrcats)
(Ed: Tuffy, an experienced Birman, was placed in his new pet home when his breeder and former owner became too infirm to care for him. He was a former stud, and came to us for some socialization before placing with Carl and Pat, VA, who had recently lost their previous treasured Birman, Qassie.)
24 March, 2003
Tuffy is now over 10 lbs. We took him to the vet a week or so ago to get one of his shots. This week was a big week for Tuffy. We finally let him out on the rear porch. He was uncertain about it at first but is quickly learning that that is an interesting place. So far, he has made no attempt to go through the screen to get totally outdoors. He must not be familiar with pet doors as he is still learning how to get out and in. He seems to be learning how to get out faster than he is learning how to get back in. The pet door is the typical pet door with a flap that swings both ways. He is used to pulling on doors to get them open so he tries to pull the flap towards him and, although he can pull it, it falls back down when he lets go of it. He will get it, I'm sure.
Tuffy has taken to licking the inside of Pat's morning orange juice glass after she drinks the juice. Maybe, since he was born in Florida?
3 January, 2003
We haven't updated you in awhile so here goes. We had a nice Christmas with great weather. A little snow early on Christmas day but soon ended and no accumulation on the roads. The next few days were sunny and bright. We took mother to the coast of NC for a couple of days as part of her Christmas present, home to see family and friends that she thought she would never see again. Mother is 90 but in good health. We hired a cat sitter for Tuffy and he took right to her by jumping in her lap as if to say, earn your keep - pet me. I think the attached picture says it all. Tuffy has become totally domesticated and totally unconcerned with his surroundings. He is very much at home. He was playful with the Christmas decorations while Pat was putting them on the tree but ignored the tree and the decorations after they were in place. Hope all is well with you.
27 November, 2002
I don't know how to label these. Tuffy Relaxing at Home - It's a Wonderful Life, Tuffy Version - Wake Me in the Spring, any number of captions would fit. Bottom line, I think Tuffy is comfortable in his new home. The 2nd picture was following the flash of the first picture. Hey, you're disturbing my rest! Note the edge of the heating pad sticking out from under HIS blue blanket.
18 November, 2002
Mr.Tuff Stuff is becoming quite the domestic cat. He seems to becoming very "at home" and is really starting to explore everything and everywhere. Sometimes, where he shouldn't be. Haven't seen him on the dining room table lately but he has developed a curiosity about the dresser in our bedroom. Maybe, it is the mirror? He has started being out more in the day time and has learned that the blue blanket on our bed is for him to nap on. He really seems to like it. He sleeps with us every night now and is a regular on the couch when someone is sitting there.
14 November, 2002
Tuffy seems to becoming more affectionate. For the last three nights, he has slept with us in bed for most of the night. He has joined me on the sofa when I read the morning paper and he seems to come more often when someone sits on the sofa and turns on the TV, especially late in the afternoon or at night. Today, he even let me clean out the corner of one of his eyes but he still isn't comfortable with that so I don't push too hard. If he lets me, OK, if not, that's OK too. He needs to learn complete trust that we are not going to hurt him. That is developing as he will let us pet him most anywhere; behind his neck, on his head, under his chin, on his tummy, or even to lightly hold one of his paws. We still need to work on his clawing habits. Pat dragged a string over the scratching post and he went at the post, or so she said. I didn't see it.
12 November, 2002
Tuffy's behavior may be indicative of his previous life with Sue. He makes a regular appearance at our supper table. This may be an indication that he was fed from the table or, maybe, co-incidentally he was used to having supper at the same time we have our supper - usually around 7:00 PM. Only thing is, he has little interest in his food. He seems to be more interested in meowing around our legs. He still hides during the day. Pat calls him a vampire cat - he hides from the sunlight.
We have the traditional scratching post/tower combination that I built for Qassie. He doesn't seem to be familar with cat towers as he has not shown much interest in it at all. I think I will try some catnip on the tower and on the scratching post which is part of the tower. Probably won't get to it until the weekend.
Last night, he appeared to spend most of the night in bed with us. I say appeared because I was asleep most of the time but I was aware of him each time I turned over. We'll see what happens tonight.
When we have time to sit on the sofa to watch TV at night, he usually comes in and lays at the hip of whoever is on the sofa. He also seems to be afraid of anyone standing. He appears to be much more comfortable when we are both sitting or laying on the bed or floor. If one of us gets up, he goes into an alert mode.
7 November, 2002
Not doing much today, just catching up on my loving. I think I am training them well, don't you? Oh, by the way, I allowed them to take some pictures to send to you. Thanks for finding me two easy marks to train. Well, I guess Qassie had something to do with their training. I will have to give her some credit.
3 November, 2002
I think we may have reached a crossroads with Tuffy. This morning he joined me on the sofa while I read the paper, and tonight he demanded company on the sofa while we were eating supper. He still hides under the sofa during the day.
30 October, 2002
Today, we seemed to take a pause in our developing relationship with Tuffy. For whatever reason, Tuffy hasn't been social tonight. It may be because tonight, for the first time, we went out after dark to go out to supper and he has never warmed up following our return home. He did pass through the family room where we were watching TV. Up until tonight, he has always come out when we were watching TV and been social. He has also been coming to bed every night for some loving as we prepared for bed - we will see what he does later. He doesn't sleep with us. He leaves when we turn the light out. We have noticed a marked improvement in his appetite in that, for the last two nights, he has cleaned his bowl of dry food as well as eating most of his wet food. We plan to gradually increase his dry food to see how much he wants.
Tomorrow is Halloween so we probably won't see much of him as the Trick and Treaters will be around ringing the doorbell. The good news is that our Trick and Treaters don't usually last past 7:30 or 8:00. But, based on tonight's behavior, he may not come out tomorrow night either. I got my camera out tonight hoping I would be able to get a picture of him either on his cat tower, playing, or cuddling with Pat on the sofa. He didn't co-operate. Maybe tomorrow, or the next day.
27 October, 2002 (pm)
Tuffy came out. I coaxed him out from under our bed, our last hiding spot. Since coming out, Tuffy has been seeking loving from myself and Pat. We have also started playing. We are still a little skittish whenever someone moves about but we don't run and hide. We have even allowed us to comb him. His coat is not nearly as long as Qassie's. She had a long coat. We expect to have company in bed tonight. Hey, he is under my feet. I guess he wanted to see where I went.
27 October, 2002 (am)
Well, Tuffy is still in hiding although he did come out last night after we went to bed. He actually got in bed with us a couple of times but, apparently he didn't like Pat coughing, so he left. This morning he is hiding again. More later.
26 October, 2002
We are home. Pat ended up holding him in her lap most of the trip. He was quite content napping in her lap with her occassionally petting him.
Right now, he is in hiding. He sought refuge in an entertainment center we have in the basement, where our office is located. It has an open front and back, a TV on top, and a compact stero and speakers on the bottom shelves. He is "hiding" between the stero and one of the speakers. We have food, water and litter box out so when he ventures out he can find the necessities. I also left his carrier out, with the door open, so he has a familiar sheltor he can get in, if he wants. We think he will adapt quickly.
Qassie was bashful when she arrived (at our previous home) but, given space and time to adjust, her curosity got the best of her - if not her hunger, and she ventured out. At first, she just watched us from a distance but eventually we passed muster and she let us pet her. Since we were the ones putting out food and water, I guess she decided we couldn't be too bad. Soon afterwards, she decided she liked being an only cat and having two people to pet her and with whom, she could play and cuddle.
We won't press Tuffy and just let him adjust to us and our home in his own time. We will probably restrict Tuffy from the porch until he is completely comfortable with us, so our presence around him won't distract him from his curosity.
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