Some people have barn cats.
Some people have farm cats.
There are alley cats.
And house cats.
And many, many more if I was willing to tax my feeble brain a bit....
But I'm not....
So without further ado, I present to you MY CAT.
He's a very special cat. He refuses to conform to society. He has his own set of rules. I would like to list them for you for your reading enjoyment, Gentle Reader.
Oliver's Rules for a Happy Pet Owner (because if Oliver ain't happy, ain't nobody happy.)
1. Do not feed me in the back yard. I do not like it. And, I have to fight off the dogs. Do not feed me in the back yard or I will follow you around and meow very loudly at you.
2. Feed me the second you come outside in the morning. If you do not I will be forced to follow you all over the yard meowing, rubbing on you and if necessary I will lie down on the ground exactly where you are weeding your garden. On top of the plants if necessary. Please do not make me resort to these drastic measures.
3. Do not feed me in the front yard either. I know I'm a cat. I know I should not fear birds. But when 20 of them descend on me flapping their wings and chirping at me, I flee in terror. I'd like to see you tough it out. Remember Hitchcock's The Birds? I would like to see you withstand that kind of terror.
4. I will require a fresh smattering of food every time you see me. Think of it as potato chips. Yes, I know there is still food in my bowl, but a fresh dab is always welcome. No comments about my weight, please. I'm just big boned. And fluffy.
5. I will live in your garage. Quit fighting it. You can carry me out. I will dash back in before the door closes. You can carry me through the house and out the front door. I will simply wait for the children to play with scooters or bikes, and then I will dash back in and hide where you will never find me. I am amazingly good at camo for a black and white ball of fluff. So, give up, keep a small bowl of food up on a shelf out of the dogs reach, and keep a fresh bowl of water available, please. Oh, and if you fail to provide me a litter box, I will simply hold it as long as possible, run in your house when you open the door to my caterwauling at 5 am, dash to your bedroom and pee on your bed. Kapeesh?
6. I do not like hair cuts. However, I understand they are a necessary evil if I plan to run through fields in pursuit of bigger things. So when I come home with my lovely fur matted in a giant wad, I will tolerate a hair cut. But only if you keep a steady supply of 3-4 pieces of cat food in front of me during the process. And I will only bite you if you try to cut the hair on my belly. That is no man's land. I can tolerate the mangy appearance, but please inform anyone who visits that this is the result of your handiwork, and not some dreaded skin/fur disease. Thank you.
So, there you have it, Gentle Reader. The rules of Oliver, the garage cat. Just to give you an idea of why he lives in the garage, here is a photo of him attempting to nap in the flower bed under our living room window. I keep it moist there for the dogs to sleep in. I gave up growing flowers there. Oliver thought it looked like a good nap spot, but Holly wanted to play. So, she was hunkered down, yipping at him relentlessly. It was annoying me, and I was in the house!