Sunday, January 8, 2023

The Oldsters

I watched the other day as Neville came into the sitting room after using the litter-box and climbed to the top of the smaller cat-tree. Looking up, he saw that Renn was occupying the top of the taller cat-tree, which is, currently, Nev’s favourite spot. The Nevsky settled down where he was, and had a nap.

This made me think about the relationship between my two senior cats. I don’t think they ever had much antagonism between them. When Neville arrived at the Cosy Apartment in mid-2019, my big boy had already been with me nearly a decade, and I don’t believe he saw much threat in the newcomer. It helped that Neville was a fairly easy-going fellow, and certainly not confrontational. If there was any hissing, it didn’t last long.

Since then, they have each lived a life that barely acknowledged the other. They would pass in the corridor, or lie on the same bed, Renn noticing Nev, and vice versa, but not doing anything about it. Neville prefers to be left alone, and Renn eventually accepts other cats with resignation.

I think their respective ages are a factor. Though Renn is older, Nev is now in his teens. Both have their health issues. These characteristics may create an affinity between them. Like residents at a retirement home, they may nod to each other in the dining room, or make way as they meet in a passage, but, except for their disdain for the younger, foolish generation with which they must share their world, they have little in common. If they met on a park bench, they would shake their heads at the antics of adolescents, glance at each other in silent agreement, then rise with groans and grunts, and go their separate ways.

It may be that the wisdom of age doesn’t necessarily embrace friendship, but extends respect, and that’s good enough for peace.


  1. Your observations regarding your cats are always so interesting and so true. As my older cats watch the "youngsters" frolic, I can just tell what they're thinking. (And sometimes it's not too complimentary!)

  2. How great that Renn and Neville have such mutual respect for each other. Peace and harmony are really wonderful things.

  3. Peace is a wonderful thing in a feline family.

  4. Yup, as you get older you just want peace and cozy place to nap.
    There were many cats when I first came here. Most found new homes and the ones that stayed have since crossed the Bridge.Now it is just mum and I and I like that.
    Purrs, Julie

  5. I think I'd be the same at a rest home, just a quiet nod to other residents would suit me fine.

  6. Ah! That word 'respect' of course as a Sicilian,
    l was raised on that very word, l also raised my
    daughter, alone, on that very word...!

    Bless the elder statesmen...!xx

  7. Contentment sometimes comes with old age. It seems to be working for these two gentlemen and that is all that matters.

  8. It's interesting how you observe the two different generations in your home. You get to enjoy both worlds! Those pics of Renn & Nev need framing. So regal.
    Have you heard how Horace is doing?

    1. I haven't heard about Horace recently, but I will be interviewing his people for the rescue-group's newsletter soon, and will learn more then, which I hope to pass on in this blog.

  9. There's nothing more adorable than a playful little kitten (hi, Zofia!) but senior cats have their own, more sedate charm.

  10. As long as peace reigns, life is good.

  11. I almost giggled when I read your description of two elderly gentlemen on a bench in the park...and I do see that kind of thing where I work in the nursing home! Precisely!

    Glad your two seniors don't fuss with each other. Sort of a mutual truce to keep the peace.