Oct 24, 2012

Vicarious pets

by Emmie Dark

Unfortunately, one of the downsides of all the travel that I do is that I simply can't justify having a pet of my own. The poor thing would be in kennels or with babysitters more often than it would be with me, and I just don't think that's fair. But the upside is that I have lots of vicarious pets! They might not know it, but all my friends' pets belong a little bit to me too. :)

So when a friend of mine announced on the weekend that she'd adopted a new black kitten from the shelter and called him Samson, it wasn't long before I was quickly asking, "When will Samson be taking visitors?"

Lucky for me, Samson was pretty keen for visitors, even if he was a little bit shy at first.
Visitor? What visitor? I'm snuggled here with some milk, and
I'm not overly fussed with anyone else.

Samson was bought to be a companion for Audrey, a lovely little kitten (also from a rescue shelter) who gets a bit lonely during the day when her mama's at work. Although we're sure Samson and Audrey are going to be the best of friends eventually, their first couple of days together have been a little bit fraught. Audrey, like any older sister with a new baby in the house, is quite put out that she's no longer the centre of attention. (For most of the time I was there, she sulked in the bedroom.)

When I visited Audrey when she first came home, she was the most curious cat I've ever known. Not only did she have no problems with cuddling up to stranger, she was off exploring every corner and crevice of her new home. And that little toy mouse I'd brought as a present? It didn't stand a chance.
No hiding under the sofa for Audrey. "Now I've got you, mouse! "
Samson is quite different. We know from the shelter that he was found at the back of a fast-food outlet, scavenging. So it's understandable he might be a little wary of people. While he was comfortable snuggling with his new mama, he wasn't in the least interested in exploring his home. And that big sister of his? Eek, she's a little scary.

I have a mama? And a sister? It's all a bit much for a little kitten to take in...
After he snuggled for a while, he went to his favourite place--under the sofa. Audrey is too big to fit under there now, so he was safe and could have a little time-out from the overwhelming new environment. And given that's he's completely (and beautifully, fluffily) black, when I peered under the couch, all I could see was a couple of little eyes staring back at me. Not scared, not frightened. Just taking it all in. In his own time. While Audrey is a little actress, Samson is more of a thinker. 
I'll just sit right here for now.
Welcome Samson, to the menagerie of Emmie's vicarious pets. I know that once you get settled you're going to feel right at home.


  1. Oh, Emmie, Samson is just adorable. For that matter, so is Audrey. :-)

    I hear you on the 'clucky for a pet' front. The dh and I have one more o/s trip in us, though, I fear, before we settle down to responsible pet parenthood. In the meantime, like you, we get our pet thrills vicariously through our friends and family members who have them instead.

  2. Emmie, what gorgeous little cats and how nice of you to have friends' pets to share. Sounds like a good solution while you're travelling so much!

  3. Awww. So pretty! We have a black cat with exactly those kind of eyes and she's rather reserved too. Lucky Samson, finding a wonderful home after such a tough start.
    Our family gets our dog fix now through my sister's 3 dogs. Whenever you knock on her door, a chorus of barks erupts - and doesn't stop.
    Edward (named after the sparkling vampire) is a teeny weeny terrier. Lacy is a totally gorgeous Shih tzu/Maltese cross. Cruiser (who I featured in a recent Babies & Billionaires book) is an ever so patient golden retreiver. The friendliest most loving group of canines eva =))
    Emmie I loved your captions. Give little a cuddle for me!

  4. I meant give little Samson a cuddle for me =)

  5. Thanks Michelle. Owning a pet really is "settling down" in lots of ways. Perhaps I'm not yet grown up enough for that!

  6. It works out well for everyone, I think, Annie. They get to share their cat/dog/canary, and I get to be a pet owner, without any of the responsibility!

  7. Will do, Robyn! Love the sound of the brood of dogs you get to own vicariously!

  8. Samson is gorgeous! I haven't had a cat for a few years and you've made me kitty-clucky. I think Samson and Audrey are very lucky to have an Auntie Emmie. :)