Sunday, September 15, 2019

Dr Raleigh and Mr Peach

Sometimes, I think Raleigh has a split personality. At times, he is timid but brave enough to come to me and receive pets. It is always the similarly: he begins with talking, saying what sounds like the same thing repeatedly. He approaches me, I hold out my hand in a fist and he slowly, very cautiously, slips under it. He may hasten away even then, but usually, he will let me slide my hand along his back, after which he will come closer and I can pet and stroke him more, even lifting him a little (to get him accustomed to being picked up without cringing or flinching, and if I can manage to put two hands upon him without frightening him.)

Almost always, moments like this come when he is hungry, and he knows food is in the offing: when I first wake in the mornings and when I return from work in the afternoons. If he is feeling up to eating in the evenings, the scene will be repeated then.

Other times, Raleigh is just plain scared of me, hurrying away if I come within a certain distance (the length of which is known only to him.) If he is lying down at such a moment, he will get up and run away. It is as if he had never allowed me to come close at any other time, or as if I were a stranger to him.

This may be the way he will always be. Despite his continuing affliction with stomatitis, I believe he is in better shape than he was when he came to live with me a year ago. His nose is no longer crusty half the time, his eye runs only under great stress (for example, when forced to visit the veterinary hospital), he receives his fill at every meal and he enjoys the warmth and comfort of cat-beds and armchairs. He is protected from the dangers of the outdoors. If he never again ventures onto my lap, I will have to live with that. If he is always wary of my presence, so be it. Animal-rescue is not about the human, but about the animal. If Dr Raleigh enjoys a head-rub while Mr Peach scurries away from my touch, that is how it must be, as long as both of them are content.


  1. Ah! Bless! That's lovely! :)
    I have often thought that with cats,
    even dogs, they tend to know and realise
    through smell maybe, if you've changed,
    in any way, say cloths, aftershave,
    general appearance..for them, you don't
    look quite right..silly l know..but we
    humans are much the same, in looking
    at our own family and friends..HeHe!
    Just a thought..!

  2. If some human could only learn to read the minds of cats, what a tale they'd have to tell.

  3. Yep, it is what it is and he is happy you accept that.

  4. You have great respect for him, and for all your fur companions, and it shows. Brian's right, it is what it is, and acceptance is the best course of action. Or non-action. :-)

  5. I too agree with Brian. It is what it is. Raleigh would do differently if he could. He has shown he loves and trusts you but sometimes something drives him to the behavior you speak of. Perhaps it is when his pain is more unbearable.

  6. To think what must have happened in his past to make him so fearful is dreadful to think. I'm so glad he's with you, as I know you'll be patient and allow him his space and time.

  7. Willie may have a good point. Perhaps Raleigh is reacting to something different. A new smell from a place you've been, or perhaps new clothes or soap or new laundry detergent. But what ever the reason, it doesn't matter - Raleigh is well cared for and loved, and he loves you, and those are the important things.

  8. Each cat has their own purrsonality, and we humans do well to ride that train and not ask too many questions.

  9. Buddy took over two months to be visible and maybe a year to allow slight touch. Today he comes to the couch or bed and lays on my lap sometimes for a few minutes other times for an hour or more. He does feel at ease and Mr Peach will too, according to his own plan, in his own time. When they do it goes to the deepest part of our being as cat carers.

  10. Who knows what goes through his mind, but as you say, it is what it is. He is well cared for and loved by you and in time Dr. Raleigh may become more of an influence on Mr. Peach's nervousness. He does look very content.