This week, from 1 – 7 June it’s Pet Appreciation Week. I found out and got inspired thanks to DogVacay.com. DogVacay.com is an online community where dog lovers can connect with each other, but you can also find dog-sitters and dog lovers who provide daycare and boarding.
With Pet Appreciation Week kicking off today, and because it’s Hiro’s birthday, I’d like to share with you guys, about how much I appreciate my two furry friends, Suki and Hiro.
Love on Four Paws
It’s difficult to explain it in words, how much I love my two cats. But I know (and I hope) that many people who have animals will feel the same. I love them both equally, and I care for them as a mother would care for her children.
I appreciate my cats for who they are and what they do. It’s in the small things, but also in the big things. Both Suki and Hiro hate to be picked up and be hugged, but it’s that short moment when they freeze and let you hug them that I love. I appreciate it that Hiro always wakes me up in time and I never managed to sleep through my alarm.
But there is more that I appreciate about having cats. It all started with Suki 5 years ago and I remember when we had her for a few months, she had finally got used to being around us and living here. She was sleeping on the couch, so quietly, and small. I sat on the floor, just watching her. That’s a moment when I thought: “I love this furry feline so much”. That was a moment for me that I realized how much something so small can mean so much to me.
Suki, to me, is a special kind of cat. She comes to you when she wants to — and only then she wants to be pet. Purring, her tail up in the air, and head-butting you. She has a temper; when she doesn’t want something, she’ll let us know. But next to that, Suki has always challenged us with her behaviour. Testing our patience, finding out how far she could go. And every time she’d find out something else to challenge us with. And I’m always up for a challenge, that way I get to know myself better, and learn more about Suki.
It started with Suki when she had separation anxiety. She would pee on the bed, meow a lot, scratch the walls and be a pain in the ass. But we didn’t give up. We hoped that another kitty would help Suki feel less lonely. She filled our lives with feline love, and now it was time to pay her back. Or so we thought…
We never thought that adopting a second cat was going to be another big challenge. Suki doesn’t like other cats in her territory. But Hiro was young and he had no idea what was going on. Why was Suki hissing and growling at him? We think that a more laid back cat would have been better for Suki, but they sort of fill up what they both lack. Hiro wants to play a lot and often challenges Suki to play, while she’s more laid back. In return Suki teaches him that he needs to back off sometimes. It took 3 to 5 months when the tension between Suki and Hiro was finally gone, and it’s all worth it. Suki’s separation anxiety is gone, and we gave Hiro a better life.
Hiro loves making me very worried. Very, very, worried… When he had luxation — his knee popped out and back in during walking, and needed surgery, when he had a weird reaction to his annual vaccination, and last week when he slept off his annual vaccine. Hiro slept for two days straight, only woke up so now and then to eat. It’s like he wants to remind me so now and then that I shouldn’t forget how much he and Suki means to me. And that I shouldn’t take it all for granted.
Cats (and other animals) are able to teach us things, and that is what I appreciate a lot, next to unconditional love. They don’t just love you because you’re a human can-opener (but I’m sure that plays an important role). They can feel it when we’re in pain and keep us company, they make us laugh, they make us happy, they don’t judge us.
Cats and other animals are like a mirror. When something is wrong with you, or you don’t feel good in your skin, they will feel and it may behave differently, or even show “bad” behaviour. They give you what you deserve, or what they think you need — Suki never stops challenging us.
I may not be able to speak with cats. But I’m 100% sure that they know that we love them, and that they love us back for everything that we do for them. They fill up that little hole in your heart that only animals can fill up. To me, they complete my life. Thanks to Suki and Hiro I know what I want to do with my future. And I appreciate that. A lot.