The new family member...!

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robutacion

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Hi peoples,

Meet Luna, the unplanned pet on the day, I explain.

It is true that we have never had cats as pets, we are dog people but, after we lost Teddy and Zac recently, we considered adopting 1 or 2 cats for the single reason they are less costly to buy, feed and look after in general.

After some times thinking about it we kept talking about finding a small young dog female if possible as we miss the dog type companionship so, and after looking at all the local animal shelters websites for their available dogs, one thing became obvious, young dogs of under 1 year of age at shelters are well sourced and expensive to buy, an initial expense of a minimum of $500 and up to $1,000 and that is a bit too much for us at the moment but, we kept looking and hoping.

Last week, I spotted a female dog that I was familiar with the breed even though they had her breed wrong written on the web page, in fact, they had no idea what she really was, I'm talking about of the "typical" Portuguese Podengo, and exceptional hunting dog of medium size, and while there are a few variations in size, colour and hair length, the ones I had were all similar to this one
portuguese_podengo.jpg
and the one I saw at the animal shelter was identical.

She was 13 months old and they wanted $380.00, she was the only one that after 1 week of me following that shelter website was not taken so I thought that we were supposed to be the ones to go and get her and so we did.

We were at the shelter at the time the website said they would open the doors for the dogs animal adoption but when we got there we were told that they changed the time to 12:00 to give extra time for the kernels to get cleaned before the visitor's arrival.

We had 2 hours to kill and the lady there said that we could have a look at the cats' section they were open to the public.
This was the local RSPCA shelter, a great set up they have there for the animals, I was quite surprised at the size kernel each cat had, all stainless steel but with lots of soft blankets, bed, toys and scratch towers.

At the very beginning and while I was looking at a couple of cats on my right, Merissa stopped at the first cage on my left and all of a certain she was reaching in to grab this cat. Well, this was an 11 month old (so they think) pure black, green and yellow eyes small cat called Georgina, she seemed to be enjoying the attention, very gentle little creature that liked to give head-butts before a head rub and a rollover.

We both spend a little time with Georgina but decided to put her down and continue looking at each of the cats available. It was getting close to 12:00 noon so we walked to the gate accessing the dogs' area that was already open.

We follow the signs painted on the ground and in no time we were at the area where they put the dogs so that visitors can get close to each one. We knew how she looked like and her name that was Kona so kept going until we saw her and my first reaction was to grab a handful of treats that I had brought from home, she was timid and hiding on the corner but when she saw the treats, I was her best friend (off-course..!)

We were so excited at being so close to her that we didn't realise that, at the top of the gate and just above her information, there was a sign saying "adopted":eek::eek::confused::mad: what that heck, the last time I checked on the website (night before) she was available otherwise we wouldn't be there so, I approach one of the RSPCA girls and asked about Kona and that's when she tells me that someone else the morning before has adopted her but they would pick her up at 4:00 pm closing time that day (day we were there).:mad::mad::mad:

We were not impressed and I had to say something at the people behind the desk, I basically expressed my disappointment at their lack of complying with their own rules that say, "animals that are still available at the closing time the day before, will be available to first come first served at opening time the following day. Website info should have changed from available to "adopted" even though the animal spent an extra day there.

They apologised for their mistake and by then I had calmed down after a thought that came to mind and that was, obviously, that dog was never supposed to be ours in the first place, the events were clear and after I shared with Merissa my thoughts we set down for a little while, looked at each other and agreed, the animal we were supposed to take home that day was not kona the dog but Georgina the cat that really impressed us.

What is destiny...???? I could give you a few versions of what I thought it is or may be but I let that up to you people, but what I can tell you at this point is that and apart from the fact that we didn't think Georgina was the correct/best name for her so, and as we were coming home we named her Luna and a few days have passed since we got her and I tell you, Merissa and I couldn't have made a better choice, this small black cat is just a sweet-heart and a gentle soul.

We are now considering to foster any animals that may need fostering, the application has been made with RSPCA so now they know our intentions.

So meet Luna, our first cat pet...!:biggrin:

Cheers
George
 

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Xel

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Not just any cat, but a black cat! I've been told they take longer to adopt out than ones of other colors (though I don't see why - she's darling). The name is fitting too. May you all have the chance to heal after what's been a rough past few weeks.
 

Wagner11

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George,

Its wonderful that you have found a companion to fit in to your lives. Cats are interesting creatures, some are very independent. The key is, as you have seen, in the first impression.

I am surprised at the high cost of adoption. Perhaps it is due to different vet fees or location. I cant speak for the entire US, but in my town the shelters do everything they can to speed up adoption. Frequently there are deals and incentives to give these animals a home. My mother went to the shelter looking for a cat. There were two kittens as friendly as could be that were brother and sister. She was going to have to choose one, but it turns out we were there on adopt one get another day. Talk about meant to be.

You will never regret getting a cat. However, if you still feel that you miss having a dog the two animals will almost always get along. Or at the very least be used to each other. Our kitten thinks she is a dog as a matter of fact.

Congratulations on the new family member.

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SteveG

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Loosing Teddy and Zac was and continues to be a horrendously difficult experience. Now is not the time to forget them, but for healing from your loss. I believe that with the circumstances described, and the wonderful nature of Luna, you have the right medicine, and are on a good track. Brighter days ahead!

Happy for the three of you...
 

1080Wayne

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Hi Luna . Welcome to the IAP . Your new pet , George , spends a lot of time here . He is a good friend of ours . Please allow him to keep coming . Sorry , have to go now . My owner (she is black like you) , wants some cheese .
 

pshrynk

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Cool story. We recently adopted (were acquired by) a feral cat, Lou. He spent the first three months in the rafters of the basement, but now won't leave off head butting for scritches all night long. Getting accepted by a cat is a wonderful thing.
 

sbwertz

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George,


You will never regret getting a cat. However, if you still feel that you miss having a dog the two animals will almost always get along. Or at the very least be used to each other. Our kitten thinks she is a dog as a matter of fact.

Congratulations on the new family member.

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When we got our shepherd/shar pei mix 7 years ago, our 6 year old female cat immediately adopted the 2 month old puppy. He weighs in at 65 lbs now, and Rascal still thinks she is his mommy. She washes his face, rubs her head and ears on him, plays with him. etc. She is going to be 14 this year and our other cat is 13 this year, and they all get along perfectly. (Well, Bandit complains loudly every time the dog noses or licks her, she tattles on him.)
 

robutacion

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Hi Sharon,

The hope is that if we are accepted to foster other animals, mainly dogs and possibly some cats that, they all get along, I couldn't have any other animal when we had Zac we still don't exactly know he tolerated Teddy from day one even though he was always a bully to Teddy nevertheless they lived together almost 12 years with only a few disagreements but any other animal, cat or dog, big or small even Teddy lookalike dogs Zac would go straight for a nasty fight so he could never go out loose and that was a shame.

As I was saying, the idea is to get one or 2 animals we can foster, the good news that the only thing that you have to pay for is their food, food dishes, beds, and pretty much it, they supply a carrying box and any medications they require, any need to visit a vet, they cover it so, the fear of big vet bills will be taken care of unless Luna becomes sick.

There is a different feeling on fostering animals, initially, they are never you and never will unless you decide to adopt him/her, fosters, in my opinion, can enjoy the dog's company and affection, your responsibility is given them the best care and love, they are there to get better and enjoy a better life than the one they would have at the shelter in preparation for them to get their forever home, I'm sure that will break our hearts but we know they only with a foster for a short period of time, up to 6 months as I've been told, in any case, we believe we are ready to give it a try, we have nothing to lose, huh...?:)

Cheers
George
 

MRDucks2

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Congrats! Luna both looks happy and as if she has gotten what she needs, I am sure the two of you will feel the same.

We have often had cats and dogs. Right now 2 inside cats, 1 outside and a St Bernard who is in and out. Funny things is our Roomba robotic vacuum. Dog is terrified of it. One of the cats will trap It between her from legs and slap the bumpers back and forth not letting it go anywhere. Lol.


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sbwertz

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Did they say that Luna had ever been around dogs? If you foster, be sure that any dogs you foster are not aggressive with cats. Some dogs cannot be trusted around cats. I've never officially fostered dogs, but I have taken dogs from friends who had a change of circumstances that prohibited them keeping their dogs, and eventually re-homed them. The cats were hostile at first, but when the dogs were not aggressive, they tolerated them.
 

sbwertz

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Congrats! Luna both looks happy and as if she has gotten what she needs, I am sure the two of you will feel the same.

We have often had cats and dogs. Right now 2 inside cats, 1 outside and a St Bernard who is in and out. Funny things is our Roomba robotic vacuum. Dog is terrified of it. One of the cats will trap It between her from legs and slap the bumpers back and forth not letting it go anywhere. Lol.


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Aren't St Bernards a hoot? I've had 3 through the years, the biggest one weighed in at 215 lbs...vet had to weigh him on the horse scale because the dog scale maxed out on him. He use to sleep under the kitchen table and when the doorbell rang he would carry the table on his back half way across the kitchen before he managed to skin out from under it.

The kids used to harness him with a big draft horse halter over his head and buckled under his belly and tie him to the wagon and give all the neighborhood kids wagon rides around the neighborhood. He would let the cats steal his food....he would stand there and whine while they ate his dinner.
 

MRDucks2

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St Bernard’s are our favorite. We did go with rescuing a Mastiff while in Houston as we didn’t think a Nard would do well down there. I think we have owned a total 6 adults, the first one named Kitty. All rescues. Including the adults, puppies and a rescue we were helping place we have had as many as 15 at one time.

I have always preferred dogs that I don’t have to bend over to pet. Biggest Nard was Dimitri, 38” at the shoulder and 252 pounds. He would lock up around puppies because they squeal if you step on them and didn’t want to hurt anyone. He could not drink out of a 5 gallon bucket because his head was too wide.

The unfortunate part is they only live about 8 years on average.


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sbwertz

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I know....Way too short a life span. But I love them dearly. All mine were also rescues. People get these adorable puppies then discover they grow into shetland ponies!

One of ours was a rescue from a breeder. He was the last of 12 puppies in a litter and had some oxygen starvation. He was a sweetie, but not too bright LOL. It took him almost three months to figure out that if I closed the door to the kitchen from the living room he could go down the hall and go into the kitchen through the other door. Micky wasn't the brightest bulb in the pack, but we loved him. The breeder was going to put him down, but we persuaded him to give him to us instead. There was nothing genetically wrong with him, and he was a beautiful dog, and sometimes they brought one of their bitches over to breed to him.

We also rescued a Newfie, but he couldn't get along with our male Saint, so we found him a different home.

Actually, the Saints do well in Phoenix weather. The heavy coat insulates them from the heat as well as from cold. Of course they were inside in the AC most of the time, but never had a problem with the heat here. One of ours was a rough coat and the other two were smooth coats. All three were wet mouth, though....drool up the walls when they shook their head.
 
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robutacion

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Did they say that Luna had ever been around dogs? If you foster, be sure that any dogs you foster are not aggressive with cats. Some dogs cannot be trusted around cats. I've never officially fostered dogs, but I have taken dogs from friends who had a change of circumstances that prohibited them keeping their dogs, and eventually re-homed them. The cats were hostile at first, but when the dogs were not aggressive, they tolerated them.
The best info we have about Luna is that she captured (trapped I believe) by animal Officers in one of the city suburbs and brought in to the RSPCA shelter about early February this year where she stayed since.

They estimated her age to be now about 11 months but I wouldn't be surprised if she is younger, she looks still small, but I may be wrong, she weighs 3 1/4kg.

We are aware of some dogs and cats not getting along, Zac was deadly on cats and even any other dogs so, the idea to adopt a cat then or even another dog, was completely out for the 12 years we had him.

Luna keeps looking at the outside through the windows, I would like her to go outside at some point but I believe a little too early yet, I wonder if cats can live a good life being inside of the house all of the time/their life's...?

Cheers
George
 

MRDucks2

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Luna keeps looking at the outside through the windows, I would like her to go outside at some point but I believe a little too early yet, I wonder if cats can live a good life being inside of the house all of the time/their life's...?



Cheers

George

Well, George, Fancy and Peaches are sisters we rescued in Texas and brought with us when we moved to Indiana.
IMG_0564.JPG
They seem to be pretty content in the house. They do have access to a closed in back porch in which we will open windows for them and Peaches will get very vocal at a window if she notices a bird outside. After 3 years in doors, there are times they will act like they want out on the front porch and I, being a man I guess, will let them go. It typically lasts only a few seconds of looking around before they decide to go back in.

We also have an outside cat who we often let stay on the back porch during our winters. When it is time to go back outside, she is not immediately happy but someone has to catch moles. Soon she only occasionally wants in and we often let her in on those occasions. She stays a couple of hours then goes to the door to be let out.

I believe a cat can be completely happy indoors all the time. They can also be pretty happy outdoors all the time, though our outdoor cat wants in more often than our indoor cats want out.




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sbwertz

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Ours go in and out through the doggie door. They don't seem to leave our back yard. They are both pretty old now and I'm not sure they can get up and over the seven foot fence any more. But I saw one of them up in the crotch of the elm tree about five feet up, but that tree is much easier to climb than the cinder block fence.

I had a beautiful long-haired tuxedo feral cat for almost ten years. We trapped and neutered him, but couldn't tame him...guess he was too old. Couldn't touch him, but he lived in my garden shed where he had one of those bulk feeders, and I have an automatic outdoor waterer for the cats and dog. When the weather got really bad I would occasionally find him in the kitchen asleep in one of the chairs under the table. He would go flying out the doggie door when I came in.
 
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JUICEDSS

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We have had up top 4 cats at once. We are at 2 currently. They have never been outside. They have plenty to keep them occupied in the house. We have coyotes in our area and they would be a meal for them. I would lose my mind if they ever got out.
 

robutacion

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Thanks for your answers, as I admitted, we know very little about having cats as pets and I'm sure I could find all the info I need on YouTube or Google but I also know that many IAP members have or have had cats as pets for a long time so, sharing our thoughts here I can learn a lot of stuff, also.

I may have many other questions as I go but at the moment and with this cat starting to get used to the house and us, I wonder if we got a "mad" cat, this creature gets moments where she goes totally silly, running from one end of the house to the other like a rocket, I mean flat out and then she decides to "attack" us like jumping in bed and clawing/bitting our feet or you can have her on your lap and all of a certain she grabs our hand with both front and back legs and those sharp claws dig in to bleed sometimes so the question I have is, having a pet cat and being scratched all over is that part of the normal "deal"...?:confused::eek:

Can cat claws be trimmed...? does it work...?:biggrin:

PS: Mike, your 2 cat sisters are beautiful..!

Cheers
George
 
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1080Wayne

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The extreme expenditure of energy is typical cat behavior , because that is required in the wild to catch food . Some individuals when by themselves may not do it much . Teenage ones will do it most . If you had 10 cats in the house , they would probably all be running at the same time , because it becomes a game . They compensate by having cat naps for 15-20 hours per day .



The clawing/biting is more of an individual thing . Some seldom do it , some frequently to get your attention . Have had a couple tomcats in our shop that come up to rub noses as soon as I enter , have a look of absolute bliss on their faces as I scratch their heads for 5-10 minutes , then will rake their teeth across the back of my hand as soon as I stop . Yes , scratches are fairly common .



Hopefully , Luna will stop thinking of you and Merissa as large mice once she gets used to having food regularly available . Cats tend to be snackers , so I would suggest giving her free access to dry cat food . Generally they seem to regulate intake and not get fat , as long as you don`t give them a lot of treats . Let them lick out an occasional empty sardine or pea soup can or yoghurt container , but don`t give them any sardines or peas or yoghurt . She would find the odd pea sized piece of slightly mouldy cheese totally acceptable .



My experience with having 1-15 in the house and/or shop at a time . Some odour involved .
 

Woodchipper

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Interesting story.
Sign at vet clinic- Dogs have owners. Cats have staff.
Bumper sticker- I like cats. They taste like chicken.
Trivia- In North Carolina, state law declares due to the independent nature of cats, you cannot claim to own them but keep and care for them. This was from an attorney.
 

MRDucks2

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I trim the front claws myself, but not the back. They seldom use the back claws while “playing”, more in defense.

The grabbing your hand with front claws and/or unsheathed rear feet and biting is normal. Had to teach the girls what level is acceptable and what is not.

Spastic running is normal, the sisters chase each other and love when the upstairs area is completely open, giving them a 50’ run.

We keep the cats out of the bedroom when sleeping. There is something about feet under a sheet or blanket that is simply irresistible to most cats. If someone is ill, they do tend to like to snuggle.

Your cat acts just like the sisters. Not mad, completely normal for a cat. :)


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robutacion

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I trim the front claws myself, but not the back. They seldom use the back claws while “playing”, more in defense.

The grabbing your hand with front claws and/or unsheathed rear feet and biting is normal. Had to teach the girls what level is acceptable and what is not.

Spastic running is normal, the sisters chase each other and love when the upstairs area is completely open, giving them a 50’ run.

We keep the cats out of the bedroom when sleeping. There is something about feet under a sheet or blanket that is simply irresistible to most cats. If someone is ill, they do tend to like to snuggle.

Your cat acts just like the sisters. Not mad, completely normal for a cat. :)


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Good to know...!

I do also admit that the majority of the scratches we have is from constant "interacting" with Luna all day long if not Merissa, it's me, I suppose we were used to interacting with our dogs all the time and yet we need to get used to the fact that cats are not dogs and I may say we keep talking about finding a small young female dog but we should wait, I have sent 2 applications for fostering to 2 different local shelters that would be a much more economical way to look after dogs and not be worried/scared about vet bills but on the other hand we may be chewing more than what we can swallow with the issue of fostering, I wonder what will happen when we have to let them go...!:confused::frown:

Cheers
George
 

robutacion

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Congrats on your new member of the family.

I wonder what will happen when we have to let them go...!:confused::frown:

Cheers
George
Dont think I could do that, I would get too attached to them.
G'day mate,

I don't blame for having that though, Merissa and I know well how much you bond with your dogs and in a way, we are no different, the issue of fostering and having to let them go has been discussed and very much highlighted but other fosters that like to provide some help to those that are just starting to foster and one thing seems to become obvious is that when one goes into the fostering, the first condition and or reality is that you are there to give the animals the attention, care, love and luxuries that they wouldn't get at the shelters for obvious reason, with that in mind, I try to prepare myself to behave as the animal carer, and not the owner, their stay is normally a short term one and that may help not to become too attached but, I and Merissa don't really know how we will react, one scenario will be we endup adopting that particular fostered animal and basically being the end of the fostering career for us but until we try, we don't know, even the worse scenerio is something we are willing to deal with.

Dogs are certainly the men's best friend, I didn't invent this but I agree totally...!

Cheers
George
 

sbwertz

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George, you have to teach her what is acceptable play behavior. She will try to play with you like she would with another cat, which involves "play biting and scratching" each other. If you scold her when she does it, and stop playing with her and put her on the floor, she will learn to play "velvet paw." The feet attacks in bed will pass as she gets older...it is typical kitten behavior....catch that mouse under the leaves! That is why I always get my cats in pairs....gives them someone to play with. (Also it means one for each lap.)

My current pair are 13 and 14 years old and I've had them both since they were kittens. Got the second one when my old female died when Rascal was a year old. She was still young enough to play with the new kitten, though. They are both old matrons now, but still occasionally go on a "tear through the house at top speed"
 
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George, you have to teach her what is acceptable play behavior. She will try to play with you like she would with another cat, which involves "play biting and scratching" each other. If you scold her when she does it, and stop playing with her and put her on the floor, she will learn to play "velvet paw." The feet attacks in bed will pass as she gets older...it is typical kitten behavior....catch that mouse under the leaves! That is why I always get my cats in pairs....gives them someone to play with. (Also it means one for each lap.)

My current pair are 13 and 14 years old and I've had them both since they were kittens. Got the second one when my old female died when Rascal was a year old. She was still young enough to play with the new kitten, though. They are both old matrons now, but still occasionally go on a "tear through the house at top speed"

Don't know if that holds well... our cat Bella would still attack my feet under the sheet even after she was several years old... then she decided her place was between Dianne and me at night on the bed, with her feet against my side, stretched to her full length... pushing me towards the side of the bed... unfortunately we lost her to cancer last year. Dianne is hinting for a new kitten and eventually I will lose the battle and we'll get one... and because of Dianne's infirmary, I'll wind up taking care of the litter box etc.... :frown:
Actually would rather have the lesser amount of work taking care of a cat than constant care for a dog.
 

robutacion

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Well, I suppose letting a cat know how far they can go with their playing is something that we will work out as we go, ideally, we would like to get a young female dog that is OK with cats, I love to see when they become best friends and sleep and play together.

For this to happen I believe has a lot more to do with each animals' temperaments than training, I also believe that this is a lot easier to achieve if both animals are brought up together from a very young age.:biggrin:

I can tell that Luna doesn't like the cold, we find her jumping from her soft bed at night and get in the bed either on top of one of us or in between in any cozy gap she sees but, not under the sheets, she doesn't like to be covered with anything, the best we managed was to cover her bottom part with her soft blanket but doesn't stay long and she jumps out and lay on top of the blanket.:eek:

Cheers
George
 

MRDucks2

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Our outside cat will lay with our St Bernard. One of the inside cats will touch noses with him as long as she is at his height, otherwise she runs. Her sister sister wants nothing to do with him and will just ignore h unless she is at his height, the she bolts.


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