For the Love of Cats


This  past summer we took in an unusual barn kitty, the part Siamese offspring of a tabby mama.  A tiny runt, Pavel (pronounced Pabel) was half the size of his robust litter mates.   We’re told he was born pink and hairless, so must have been a premie. Even now, at what should be a nearly full grown size, he only weighs a little over six pounds so is still quite small for a kitten cat.  Not that this deters him in any way.  And nothing escapes his insatiable curiosity.  Ever on the prowl, he continually seeks for that which he can get into, unless he’s snoozing in a sunbeam.   We all savor Pavel’s nap times.

Feisty,  we guess that’s how he survived, this determined little guy can be very sweet and purry when he so desires and has brought much pleasure  into our lives.  I particularly like it when he cuddles with me. Mostly he’s busy pouncing on the bigger kitties and other naughtiness.  Our two older cats Percy and Minnie Mae are gradually adjusting to him, although relationships are strained.  Especially when he tackles them all in good fun and they take offense.  At one time, they were the new kid here who had to gain acceptance among the ranks.  I tell them sometimes you just need a kitten.

“It is impossible to keep a straight face in the presence of one or more kittens.” ~Cynthia E. Varnado

“A catless writer is almost inconceivable.  It’s a perverse taste, really, since it would be easier to write with a herd of buffalo in the room than even one cat; they make nests in the notes and bite the end of the pen and walk on the typewriter keys.”  ~Barbara Holland

(Pavel and my little pom poo Sadie Sue sitting with me as I write).

“The cat could very well be man’s best friend but would never stoop to admitting it.”  ~Doug Larson

“There has never been a cat
Who couldn’t calm me down
By walking slowly
Past my chair.”
~Rod McKuen

“Some people scorn a cat and think it not an essential; but the Clemens tribe are not of these.”- quoted in “UC’s Bancroft Library celebrating Mark Twain,” San Francisco Chronicle, Oct. 2, 2008

“When a man loves cats, I am his friend and comrade, without further introduction.”~ Mark Twain

“I had been told that the training procedure with cats was difficult.  It’s not.  Mine had me trained in two days.”  ~Bill Dana

“If there is one spot of sun spilling onto the floor, a cat will find it and soak it up.”  ~J.A. McIntosh

***Image of my niece Cailin with kitty Pavel.

“A Home without a cat, and a well-fed, well-petted and properly revered cat, may be a perfect home, perhaps, but how can it prove it’s title?” — Mark Twain 

***In case you haven’t noticed yet, Mark Twain loved cats.  And he’s a distant ancestor of mine, so maybe the connection?

“Thousands of years ago, cats were worshipped as gods. Cats have never forgotten this.” — Anonymous

***Our most recent pic of Pavel, all images taken by my daughter Elise.

“No amount of time can erase the memory of a good cat, and no amount of masking tape can ever totally remove his fur from your couch.”  ~Leo Dworken

“Kittens believe that all nature is occupied with their diversion.”  ~F.A. Paradis de Moncrif

“There are few things in life more heartwarming than to be welcomed by a cat.” — Tay Hoho

To this I add, I also love dogs. But there is something inherently special about cats.  As a child they were always my favorite pet.  I could not be without them and will probably become the crazy cat lady.  Maybe I already am.  Hmmmm….

“Of all God’s creatures there is only one that cannot be made the slave of the leash. That one is the cat. If man could be crossed with the cat, it would improve man, but it would deteriorate the cat.” — Mark Twain

30 responses to “For the Love of Cats

  1. Beth, what a nice post! I love cats and dogs and would hate to be without them. We rescued our big cat, who had been the runt of his litter and was starving. When we adopted him, he would fit in my husband’s hand and we had to hand feed him formula and then pablum. He has thrived and is now long and heavy, probably about 18 pounds.

    Another coincidence…my family also is distantly related to Mark Twain, but on his mother’s side. My grandmother had a great uncle named Samuel T. Clemmons and many thought he was Mark Twain because an old-fashioned T resembles and L. My family were upset when I discovered the difference. :-/ Thank goodness there’s still a connection! Many of the men in my dad’s family resemble Mark Twain: my nephew, my brother, and my dad.

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    • How interesting, Caroline. We are related to Twain on my father’s side through the Clemmons connection. Maybe you and I are kin. 🙂 I can’t get over how big your ‘runt’ has grown.

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  2. Cats are the best. My little guy, James, a white shorthair with tabby patches, is in the kitchen hoping for a mouse or a shrew right now.

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  3. Oh, Beth, Pavel is adorable!! I’m glad he has found a wonderful home and two other (poor) kitties to annoy. 😉
    I can’t imagine life without cats, as tough as it is when you lose them. Our boys have been with us for over 7 years. Tiger was a kitten, and Bob a foundling without any cat social skills. I guess that’s why he was kicked out.

    Loved the quotations. Yes, Mark Twain is well known for his fondness of cats. My favourite cat quote is from ‘anonymous’:
    For man to truly understand rejection, he must first be ignored by a cat.

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  4. Lovely post, Beth. I love cats too. But I have tears in my eyes as I remenber my little Wendy that was our joy after my kids left for college. The whole neighborhood adored her. She was so sweet and smart. I let her out in the morning when I left for work. She’d be waiting for me, sitting in the driveway, to greet me when I came back. We had to give her away when we moved to an apartment, in a building with no pets regulations.

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  5. Beth,

    Love this post!!! I have a cat named Feather and she is a diluted tort….We love her to death…I being a writer too could never imagine not having the love of a cat…..

    Love you girl

    Melinda

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  6. Thanks Melinda. Feather sounds lovely. Back at you. 🙂

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  7. OH my God! I love Pavel! I have never seen a more cute cat!

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  8. Thanks Pragya. He really is darling.

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  9. My cousin has a cat fetish. Sends me all sorts of emails and FB posts. I’m going to pass on your pictures, Beth. She’ll love ’em, and you’ll have a new fan!

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  10. Beth, Pavel is so beautiful and cuddly. I love cats. I loved the quotes. I didn’t know Mark Twain was such a fan of cats and that you’re distantly related to him. Cool. Thanks for posting the pictures and the quotes.

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  11. Awww!!!! He’s so cute, Beth!

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  12. He’s a very handsome boy now, Beth. My Trouble came to us when she was about three months old and a drop off in a mobile home park my husband’s grandmother lived in. She is now 13 years old and I’ll miss her when she is gone. She’s rotten and still lives up to her name even at her age. And, yes, she loves to help me write.

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  13. I love cats. I just took in a stray and I had to laugh at your post cause I love when he’s sleeping. LOL. He is sort of wild when he gets going. Think it goes with him having been outside. Loved all your pictures and post. That is neat you are related to Mark Twain.

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    • Sounds very familiar Sue. Kitten and some cats get a little crazy at certain times of the day. And thanks so much for the high five on my post. Seems we’ve got two authors related to Mark Twain, as Caroline is too. How kewl is that?

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  14. Loved the post, Beth.

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  15. Lovely post, Beth. I’m a cat person myself. One of my most cherished connections to my dad, who passed several years ago, is my memory of his giving me a kitten for my thirteenth birthday, against my mom’s wishes. He understood my heart, and I experience that healing knowledge to this day, whenever my current incarnation of his gift curls up in my lap.

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  16. What a cute kitten! I also have a part Siamese we rescued, Sammie. But he is huge. We also have another cat Flip who was my son’s cat but couldn’t keep him so he joined the family. Nice cat but dumber than a fence post! LOL

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  17. Sounds like a fun mix, Patsy. Pavel is very smart, but not all of our cats are. 🙂

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  18. Beth, he is the cutest lil thing I have ever seen!

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  19. What a cute kitty! Pavel is adorable.
    All in all, we have 4 cats, one being a flame point Siamese kitten.
    Love your post.

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