Hi, my name is Huckleberry, and today I am 10 years old. That’s a picture of me above. I had kind of a rough start. I was born in a dirty box in a filthy garage, and my mama took care of me by herself until I was about a month old, when I went to live with Mary, my foster mom. Can you believe it, I went to live with Mary along with my mama and all 5 of my brothers, too? (There were 6 of us boys in my litter. NO GIRLS!) My brothers I and seemed really big at the time, but I have seen other kittens since then, and I realize how small we really were. I was really just a little fluffball.
When we were about 6 weeks old, my brothers and I were all very healthy and we got “neutered.” This means that we would never get to be dads, but I didn’t really care because I got to play every day, and living at Mary’s house was so much more fun than living in that dirty old garage. Also, I learned how to play, clean myself, purr, eat from a dish, and be held by people. When we got neutered, my brothers and I also got these big shots and we even had to go back for more shots later on. (I don’t like my doctor, whom I call “Dr. Poison” because I always think he’s trying to poison me when he gives me my shots every year. I don’t call him “Dr. Poison” to his face because I don’t want to hurt his feelings, but that’s the way I feel about him. He’s a thug who claims to like cats!)
When we were about 8 weeks old, my brothers starting getting adopted out to new homes through our local Humane Society! And a couple of weeks later, I had to say goodbye to my last brother, Thomas, who went to his new home to keep another cat company. And even my mama, who got “spayed” (so she wouldn’t have to have more babies) found a forever home with a new family. I was sad for a few days, but it turned out OK, because I still had 2 other cats to play with at my foster home, and I knew my brothers and mama had all found really good homes.
When my mama got adopted, that was the same day that Mary, my foster mom, told me that we would be adopting each other, and that I would always live with her and her other cats. Now Mary wasn’t my foster mom anymore; she was My Person!
In the last ten years, we’ve lived in three different homes and Mary even got married to this guy named Mike. Mike already had a cat, Sinjen, who quickly became my BEST FRIEND EVER. We did everything together, and I copied all the things he did because he was so cool. We wrestled every single morning, body slamming each other and making fur fly. Sometimes I found myself purring in the middle of a wrestling match because I was having so much fun. Sinjen and I also cuddled together all the time and played with all the same toys. Sinjen taught me how to catch grasshoppers outside, how to munch on catnip, and how to perch on the window when Mary and Mike weren’t home, so we could stalk the birds at the birdfeeders outside! We followed each other other around all the time (mostly I followed him) and we liked all the same things. He was my dear friend, my mate.
But Sinjen died unexpectedly a few years back. He was only 6 years old and we had just wrestled the morning before that. He was fine. Then the next morning he had a blood clot that hurt him very badly, and he died that day. That was a very tough time for me. I didn’t understand that he would always be gone, so I walked around our house meowing and howling for Sinjen for weeks on end. I thought if he knew how much I missed him, he’d come out of hiding and play with me again. I started jumping on the other two cats at my house, Sagan and Stewart, hoping they would wrestle with me like Sinjen used to, but they didn’t want to wrestle with me and they just hissed at me and clawed at my face. Mary and Mike tried to comfort me, but it didn’t help. I missed my friend. I was so sad!
But then, I became buddies with another cat who came to live with us! And he’s still my friend today! His name is Moe and although he’s no Sinjen, he’s a good friend anyway. I follow him around outside at our house in the country, and we watch the birds together and sneak into the garage where we’re not supposed to go. (Sometimes it smells like mice in there, and there are always little spiders and bugs to catch.) We walk among the plants in the garden and we sit in the cool dirt while Mary pulls weeds. We even roll in the dirt and get really really dirty! We sometimes catch mice and then we play with them for awhile before we finish them off. When we play, Mary calls this “Huck and Moe’s Excellent Adventures.” She says she’s glad I have a good friend.
So now I am 10. But I feel just like the kitten I was when I met my Person. Today, for instance, I was sitting on this fence, minding my own business, when Mary snapped this photo of me. I was actually sitting right next to the birdhouse waiting for the wrens to fly back, so I could grab at them with my sharp claws. It’s my own special trick! In the springtime I can even hear the little baby wrens in that house crying out for their parents to feed them. Well, I sit there and wait . . . and I just smile to myself that I am scaring the wrens. Then usually Mary or Mike sees me out the window and comes outside to make me go sit in the grass instead. They say there’s no reason to eat wrens when I am fed very “high-quality” food inside the house twice a day. High quality, huh! It’s lousy, dry stuff that Dr. Poison recommended, and it’s nothing compared to a nice juicy robin or a delectable goldfinch (or soon, a tasty wren, if I have anything to say about it)!
Anyway, here I am today, on my birthday, waiting for the wrens:
I am glad to be 10. On my birthday and other special days, I get a treat of canned cat food. It is usually pretty delicious. I’m headed inside now for my birthday treat. HAPPY 10TH BIRTHDAY TO MEEEEE!