Setting Sight on Sammy

Writing 101, day 6. Today, you’ll write about the most interesting purrson you’ve met in 2014. In your twist, develop and shape your portrait further in a character study.


I don’t really get to be around too many furiends for any great length of time, but one day about 10 months ago the front door opened and in came a large white cardboard box with a series of small holes around the sides and a handle on top. “She” had arrived. The box was carried down a short flight of stairs and disappeared behind the double sliding wooden doors of the back room. A whiff of unfamiliar pheromones rose up the stairs to where I was watching and my nose started drinking them in. They led me along until I reached the closed doors, her scent stronger now coming through the cracks. I pressed my inquisitive nose as far under the door as I could when from the other side another nose sniffed back at me. We knew each other was there, just out of sight and reach. Over the next few days or so,  objects would be presented to me with her smell all over them, and apparently she received the same of mine. It was part of a gradual introduction method my human mom had read about online.

Then there came the day when the door was opened and there she sat. Sammy. Not a name my mom would have given a female cat but she was her adult son’s cat and he had named her. The small long haired Persian cross, with huge golden eyes emphasized by the dark gray hood and matching cape that ran the length of her back to her tail, stared me down. A faint dusting of an off-centered white blaze extended down her nose into a patch of white below it, filling out her upper mouth and whiskers, making her muzzle look much wider than it was. It created an unflinching look that made her mood hard to read. The fur on her gray chin and neck turned white again into her belly except for a small gray heart-shaped patch ironically located on the left side of her chest. She stood up and on short white stocky legs and pudgy paws, began to cautiously walk towards me. She only appeared full bodied sitting down but now her face was wider than her midriff, suggesting a more slender frame under all that fur. My eyes darted for a moment to her fluffy tail which seemed too short and somewhat misshapen. Mom told me later that a birth defect caused it to be bent in two places like a zigzag.

At one and a half years old, she was older than me by 6 months, not much older, but enough for her to feel she was my superior. It soon became apparent  that except for her human, she thought she was everyone’s superior. Even my humans who had known and played with her as a kitten were not spared. Occasionally when it was her idea, Sammy would go sit in one of the human’s lap for affection and purr sweetly in content, but they took their chances when picking her up. My humans soon learned to hold her out at arm’s length whenever they did because they’d only get a brief growl of warning before she’d twist her body around and with a lightening fast swipe of her razor sharp claws directed at their faces, leave her mark.  She was an outdoor cat and would often sit in front of the door and stare intensively at the door handle when she wanted out, only re-directing this mind meld tactic on any human that unwittingly walked by.  If they opened the door and blocked her exit, she’d hiss her annoyance at them. If they thought scolding her was a good idea, they thought wrong because with ears back and nostrils flaring, she’d menacingly turn and face them. She wasn’t really mean-spirited, she just wouldn’t put up with anything she didn’t like.

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I was okay with her presence as long as she kept her distance, but there were times when we got close without incident like the time we took her on the boat with us for the weekend, and the times when mom took me outside for walks.  However, most of the time when I’d be lying contentedly on the floor, out of the way minding my business,  she’d saunter by and then with a flick of her tail and a squinting of her eyes suddenly pounce at me for no apparent reason. Maybe she was trying to play, but it seemed she didn’t  know how to play nice. I could never trust her so I was always a little quicker and she’d miss, but she didn’t give up without a bit of a chase first. Once in a while I’d run out of room before she gave up and she’d actually get a piece of me to which I protested in a very vocal way that sounded much worse than it was. She’d back off and casually head over to her favourite perch at the top of the stairs and busily start grooming herself as if nothing had happened.

Mom tried to clicker train her to shake a paw and felt like they were making a break through when Sammy finally started lifting her paw when mom touched it instead of striking out at her hand and jumping slightly backwards. I think the treats were what did it. I learned a few tricks from Sammy too. I learned how to leap over the open stair well to avoid her when I wanted to go up and down the stairs. I also watched and learned how she opened the sliding screen door on the back porch and now I can let myself out if it’s unattended.  She’s gone now, they left about a month ago while we were away on our cruise this summer. I heard she was couped up inside an apartment with a little dog. I feel more sorry for the little dog. =^,,^=

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6 thoughts on “Setting Sight on Sammy

    • I forgot to mention that she had lived here before me as a kitten and had left, so actually “She had returned”, and found she’d been replaced…not trying to make excuses for her but purrhaps that’s the source of her demeanor. 😉

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  1. Pingback: She’s Back – Again | Pawcific Purrsea

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