It wouldn't be Christmas without a good animal story, huh? Meet Romeo. He is the orange cat there on the left. No, we didn't get a new cat. This is B.'s cat who came to visit for the holiday.
Romeo is a very cute, very polite fellow, and was a very good house guest. It won't surprise you, though, to hear that at least one of our resident animals was not exactly a good hostess. Pretty much, each animal was true to form.
Olive really wanted to play, and by play, I mean slobber all over the fluffy cat. Romeo was quick to put an end to that, and Olive has a new scratch on her nose to show for it. Olive gave Romeo a fairly wide berth for the rest of the visit. I'm quite OK with this, as I feel a dog should develop a healthy appreciation for cats early on, and this was just another piece of that education for young Olive.
Kenzie was interested, but got hissed at once, and that's all it took. He was actually a little bit afraid of Romeo, and was very hesitant to be near him.
Midnight absolutely didn't care. Less than 24 hours into the visit, we discovered them both sharing a bed together. He didn't seem concerned that there was another cat here, and doesn't seem to care that Romeo went home today, either.
Nefertiti was not thrilled. And by not thrilled, I mean that she spent the first 24 hours doing her wildcat scream at him. Thankfully, this eventually stopped, and was replaced by Nefertiti stalking Romeo and lying on the ground just staring. Staring. Staring. It was as if she was under the belief that she was actually Medusa, and that with enough staring Romeo would turn to stone, and her work would be done. Romeo did not seem overly amused by the cat who stalked and stared at him.
At one point, the humans had to intervene. Somehow Kenzie ended up on the third floor in P.'s room... hiding from Romeo who was next door in D.'s room. Kenzie couldn't leave because of the cat just outside the door. On the stairs to the third floor, outside D.'s room, was Nefertiti. Sitting. Staring. And Romeo wouldn't leave D.'s room because of Nefertiti lying in the only exit path. She was not planning on moving, and was willing to wage a war of attrition. Finally, in order to rescue the dog, I had to move the cat. When Nefertiti moved, then Romeo moved, and finally poor Kenzie could leave P.'s room and come back downstairs.
M. and B. (and Romeo) all went home this morning. (Boo!) The animals have gone back to their usual mode of living. None of us is sure, though, whether Romeo will be filled with overwhelming relief to be back to being an only animal, or if life will seem rather dull and flat for a while.
I don't suppose we will ever know.