Throughout my life I've pretty much always had the company of pets. This started with cats, it later included some dogs, and has even included some guinea pigs and a rabbit.
Below is a collection of names and pictures of those various animals.
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Early childhood: Dibble, Topsy and Tim. Three tabbys. The latter two were Dibble's twins. Dibble out-lived them both until she disappeared one day.
Mog was a black and white cat, originally called fluffy prior to us adopting her as a kitten. I remember her arrival, even though I was barely 5 years old; I remember being in our kitchen and my step dad crouching down and her climbing up onto him. We moved house twice and Mog stayed with us through all. She was a best friend to me during my childhood, joining me at the breakfast table before I left for school; I remember us sharing affectionate 'head-bonks'. I think Mog lasted until she was about 15 years old when she would be ill quite often with regular visits to the vets. She sadly passed away while I was abroad for a few months.
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For a while my younger brothers and sister had pet guinea pigs and a rabbit; I was not interested in having my own pet.
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Lucy was an older cat that we adopted. She acquired many nicknames, beginning with Fatty! This was because when we first got her she started to put on weight; it was like she was pregnant but wasn't... perhaps it was a so-called 'phantom pregnancy' - she ended up with soft saggy tummy fur. We tried to keep her indoors upon her arrival so that she would get used to living with us, but she managed an escape through a hole in our house's adjoining garage, and she made it the whole mile back to her previous address! She was brought back to us and then she was settled, she never did that again.
Lucy was a peculiar cat; she was pretty antisocial to our other cats, hissing at them if they so much as looked at her, but this we learned was just her defensive nature. We also learned that if we fussed her for too long at a certain spot on her back she would start licking whatever fabric she was on, from sofa cushions, towels or woolly sweaters; they would end up soaking wet after a short time! Another name for her was Lucykins. Lucy was also strange in that she would rarely eat anything except cat biscuits, although she sometimes stole some of my breakfast cereal if I let her.
Lucy came with us when we moved house and then we adopted a mature cat called Tom (technically spelled 'Twm' because his previous welsh owner had named him). He was a self-confident chap, either sleeping in the middle of the kitchen floor without a worry of someone stepping on him in the busy home, or sadly fighting with the neighbour's cat outside in the early hours of the morning (the sound of which would distress me a lot).
My brother adopted his friend's dog and it was soon determined that it needed a companion so we adopted Nelly. She had the fluffiest of fluffy tails, and a few nicknames (Nelly-Noo, Noo-Noo), and she liked to 'swish' her tail whenever she was happy or even if you said her name; I therefore enjoyed saying "Noo-swish" to her, which would promptly make her tail swish in response! I also remember her whining whistle which I learned to copy and still do it to this day.
My brother's dog had to be put down. He acquired another called Tai, a Staffordshire Bull Terrier.
I'd always been more of a cat person until Nelly and Tai; Tai was a charming little man and a loving companion to my brother. He enjoyed van rides and accompanying my brother on jobs; if someone pulled up outside our house in a van he would be in it, thinking he was off on another journey! A few times he joined me in my car and I liked how he just sat there eagerly looking out of the window.
When my brother and Tai moved out Nelly needed another companion so we adopted Chloe, a crazy sheep dog that was incapable of rounding up sheep since she preferred to play; she would chase a ball all day if you were prepared to keep throwing it.
The disturbing thing about Chloe was that she would sometimes lay on her back for you (supposedly) to rub her tummy, but she would automatically snarl as you did it!
Both Nelly and Chloe died at quite young ages; Nelly suffered with arthritis. Then my parents adopted a (then young) Labrador called Freeda.
Then my parents adopted my sister's dog Trixie. Freeda is funny because being a bigger dog she doesn't seem to realise how big she is so she will try and sit on your lap like Trixie can. Trixie, the older dog is a mischievous scallywag; she will go wherever he snout leads her, even when she knows it will get her into trouble - then when she is in trouble she will skulk off to her bed.
Freeda is a timid dog and for a long time she would bark and growl when I arrived home until she recognised me; it was her defensive mechanism and was all sound. She would do this to anyone and it took her many years to improve.
We adopted a cat called Sid, sadly he didn't last long after seemingly injuring his back which would cause him to be temporarily unable to walk.
After Sid came Dibs, adopted as a kitten by my brother and smuggled home in a duffle-bag.
Then we adopted an adult cat called Toby (sometimes Lord Toby). He was such a gentleman; he would escort Dibs and Lucy around - even though Lucy was antisocial to all other cats she accepted Toby as her shadow.
Sadly, like Dibble, Lucy became an old cat that one day went out and didn't return home.
A couple of times I shared my bed with Toby, he was very snuggly but he would tickle me terribly by 'pedalling' in my armpit!
Sadly, like how Mog died while I was away abroad, Toby got ill suddenly and died while I was away for a couple of weeks.
My cat Tiny. I adopted him after his brother Smoky decided he wanted to be an only cat!
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