Princess is currently 11 years old
May 2004 - at age 2.75 (approximate)
In May 2004, I took in Princess making her the 3rd cat in my house at that time. Her's is an interesting story.
My friend Nancy and I first spotted Princess two years earlier (when Princess was roughly 1 years old) near our
office building. She is nearly solid black and blind in one eye. And she crept so softly in the lawn near
our office building that we joking said she didn't bend a blade of grass. But Princess was very
of humans. She finally walked into one of our humane traps so that we could get her spade and vaccinated.
But she was so feral and wild that we couldn't find a home for her. So we released her back
to the familiar surroundings of our office area. We continued to feed Princess for the next
two years. And even though we were never able to touch her (no matter how much we tried) we began
to feel a bond with her. So I trapped her again in May 2004 and this time I took her home. She refused to
eat in my guest bedroom but when I put her in my outdoor cat enclosure
eating. I made a little progress with her in the cat enclosure - but not much. She
wouldn't play with me or let me touch her, but she seemed pretty comfortable with me being in there with
her. But it soon became very hot (summers in Texas are brutal) and the mosquitos were terrible. So after
two months in the enclosure I hired a professional to net her and move her into my guest bedroom.
Luckily, she immediately began eating in my guest bedroom (unlike when she was in there two months
prior). She eventually started playing a little with a feather and would let me pet her if I didn't let
her see my hands. She is very afraid of human hands. Tiger
could see her through a screen door that I put up separating the guest bedroom from the rest of the house.
"Linda" did not care for Princess, but Tiger tolerated her. Princess, like all female cats, instantly
fell in love with Tiger. Anytime I let Tiger into the guest bedroom, Princess would writhe on the floor
trying to get his attention. She would periodically try to rub her head against him. It was so sweet to see
her let her guard down for ol' Tiger. He was the only animal on the planet that she liked and trusted. Every
once in awhile Tiger would let out a small hiss just to set some boundaries, but he was amazingly tolerant of
her. That's Tiger.
I made a little progress with Princess in my guest bedroom, but even after several months of one-on-one time
I could only pet Princess under the right conditions - namely, when her head was turned away from my hands.
In December 2004, I let Princess out of the guest bedroom so she could freely mix with Tiger & Linda. Linda
doesn't like any other cat but Tiger, so she will periodically hiss at Princess if Princess gets too close; and
Princess quietly tiptoes in a different direction. To Princess' delight, Tiger was soon grooming on her just like
he always had Linda. Tiger would often groom Princess for a few minutes and then walk over to Linda and groom her.
What a stud.
Princess was like Tiger's shadow. She tried to be near him most of the time. If they were curled up
together she was much more willing to let me pet her - it was like she felt that Tiger would not let anything bad
happen to her. Ever since Tiger died in November 2008, I've tried to keep petting Princess. When I'm on the couch
she will sometimes jump up on the far end and let me lean over and pet her. If I get too demonstrative she will jump
down, but at least she lets me pet her. I know Princess longs for Tiger. Sometimes she walks into a room and looks
at the places Tiger liked to play or sleep and then she cries. It's heartbreaking. I miss him too Princess.
In May 2010, I rescued a black & white male kitty named Riley
. He's a terrific
cat, but he liked to play with Princess too much - so she hunkered down under a chair in my bedroom.
I've since divided my house so that Riley (and my other cat Josie
) have the front
half, and Princess has the back half all to herself. This has let Princess blossom. She still slowly
creeps away if I walk toward her, but if I'm on my bed she lets me pet her a lot, she purrs constantly and
she'll even headbutt my hands and sleep on my chest. It took six years to get to this place, but I'm
Below are some pictures of Princess, followed by several short video clips.
July 2005 - Princess age 3, Tiger age 14
As you will see, most pictures of Princess also include Tiger. She adored Tiger - and he was very good to her.
Nov. 2006 - Princess age 5, Tiger age 16, Linda age 12
Linda (gray tabby) has never liked being very close to Princess. But if Tiger (orange tabby) was nearby then Linda would
allow herself to be extremely close to Princess. In fact, all three would snuggle togther if
Tiger was in the
middle. He was something.
Nov. 2007 - Princess age 6, Tiger age 17
Two months before this picture was taken Tiger suffered a heart attack. Two ultra sounds revealed that is heart was only
contracting at roughly 20% of normal. With a lot of TLC and some LASIX injections (to remove fluid from his chest)
Tiger lived for 14 months after his diagnosis, quadrupling most of the vet's expectations. And he was happy and
relatively healthy for nearly all of those months.
Jan. 2008 - Princess age 6, Tiger age 17
Tiger taught Princess the trick of laying in front of the heater vent during the winter. When Tiger would hear the
central heat kick on, he would get up on the catwalks and soak up that warm air!
July 2008 - Princess age 6, Tiger age 17
Sept. 2008 - Princess age 7, Tiger age 18
Tiger and Princess loved being out in the cat enclosure. And they would normally lay very close to one another on a
shelf. When this picture was taken, Tiger had been diagnosed with severe cardiomyopathy for over a year. He would be
gone two months later.
Windows Media Player Video Clips
If you don't have the latest version of the Windows Media Player you can get the free version by
Princess eating outside my office building (age 2) - March 2004
Princess living temporarily in my cat enclosure Part I - June 2004
Princess living temporarily in my cat enclosure Part II - June 2004
Princess playing in my guest bedroom - August 2004
Tiger & Princess early contact Part I (Tiger 14, Princess 3) - August 2004
Tiger & Princess early contact Part II - August 2004
Tiger & Princess early contact Part III - August 2004
Princess first time on Cat Walks - December 2004
Tiger, Linda, Princess - January 2005
Princess & Tiger grooming each other (Tiger 14, Princess 3) - January 2005
Tiger, Linda & Princess sleeping near each other (Tiger 14, Linda 10, Princess 3) - February 2005
Princess loving on Lucy (Princess age 5) - December 2006
Tiger & Princess on Sali's tower (Tiger 16, Princess 5) - January 2007
Tiger & Princess on cat walks (Tiger 17, Princess 6) - December 2007
Princess head-butting my face for first time (age 10) - April 2012
Other Related Links On My Site:
My Cats' Home Page
The Large Cat Enclosure
Catwalks Inside My House
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