Cleo despises the newcomer, a cat.

October 27th, 2011 // No Comments

Who would’ve thought that a loving, totally accepting dog could be so vicious when it comes to having a new creature invade her territory? It happened not long ago that my neighbor, Kathy, who rescued an abandoned Cleo as a puppy from death by starvation, would bring in a kitten she’d found.

Like the kitten, I’d taken in the puppy, starved and hydrated when I held her in my arms.  A thoroughbred pit bull as I soon discovered. No, I didn’t go for the bad rap the breed has. She was a valuable dog who had come to me, delivered straight from heaven.

Within a couple of days the message was clear, sombody up there could see that my husband  and I had to be relieved from our boredom and return to the real world. With the puppy running all over the place and the neighborhood, our yard had no fence, I  rediscovered my youth as I chased after her. Our dinner-table conversation now had a definite topic. Cleo entertained us with her antics. Her obedience training taught us more about ourselves than the puppy. With her  demands our relationship took an immediate upturn. We had a baby in the house.

Fast forward. Eight years later. Cleo is the center of our lives. We have a fenced in yard and a routine that takes Cleo on her twice daily walks that obliged Edwin to leave his computer and smell the roses. Better yet, meet his neighbors who love Cleo.

In comes a new addition to the family. Kathy spotted a white kitten with black spots in the neighborhood underbrush. Naturally, I couldn’t resist and took her in. The black spots on her white fur resembled perfect hearts.

Cleo was outraged even before I attempted to bring the kitten inside. She was a handful of loveliness in black and white. Cleo fumed and snorted, threw fits of pain and despair. Just having the kitten near was unbearable to her. The insult.

The kitten got the message and stayed in the trees. She could get up there in a flash and then look down on Cleo mocking.  Cleo’s anger and frustration had her turn to eliminating the intruder by  staelthily sneaking up on the kitten. Once she actually caught the kitten. I saw it in a gruesome flash, chased after Cleo, hit her hard, screaming until Cleo let go of the kitten. I took the drops of blood on her nose as coming from the kitten who had escaped to the basement. After some agonizing minutes I decided to save the kitten, should that be possible.

Entering the basement I saw no traces of blood! Was the beast hiding somewhere? And then, to my surprise, the kitten looked at me from one of the shelves as if nothing had happened. No blood, no wound, nothing. Cleo had not harmed her, just taken the cat by the scruff to show her who was master in the home. For that she’d received a couple of nasty scratched.

From then on the kitten stayed in the front yard and Cleo in the back.  They never became friends, but Cleo settled down and accepts the inevitable.


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