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My cats & companions; and about service dogs

Posted Nov 02 2011 12:00am

 This is Spooky on her old Princess bed, she never used much
 Chat Noir: Spooky on the couch in my old apartment

This is Spooky at Christmas time a couple years ago, in my old apartment, going after a cereal bowl with some milk left in it

 Ribbit the Little Lion this past summer, in this apartment This is Ribbit yesterday, couldn't be bothered to pose for a picture:

Someone asked me recently if I had ever thought of getting myself a service dog. This person is a friend of mine who knew I was having a really hard time with psychotic symptoms, etc., so I guess he was thinking I could use some more help. But I'm not a dog person. There are people who are, though, and if you have a mental illness, I just thought I'd mention that there is such a thing as psychiatric service dogs , in case you hadn't already heard about this.
I have seen at least one person with one of these dogs, possibly more than one, at the community mental health center where I for treatment. There is a requirement by law that you get the dog specially trained, and then once they're trained, as far as I know you can take them anywhere you like to take them with you. This seems like something that could potentially be helpful for some people, so I just wanted to mention it here. I have brought it up before to a family member who loves dogs and has Bipolar Disorder.

As for me, I'm a cat lady by trade. I cannot bring a dog into my home, because it would involve me having to clean up dog matter which is something I refuse to do with my time. I like cats, as they simply do their own thing, much like I do myself, without asking for a lot of assistance. They also do ask for attention, and I give it to them, but they're not as demanding as a dog, and they don't require me to be home a lot, like I would need to be if I had a dog that needed to be walked.

I have had cats all my life. When I was little I had a cat named Spooky. She was one of my first cats, along with Razmatazz, also known as Razzy, when I was three years old. Spooky was a black cat. So four years ago, I went to get a cat again, with my ex-boyfriend who claimed interest in this although he never did lift a finger to care for the cat after we got her home, and then became a deadbeat dad who disappeared from her life (but that's a sad tale).
We picked out a black, little kitten, and named her Spooky II. Spooky, who quickly became known as "princess" because she is so beautiful and so aware of her beauty, has been my close companion now for four years. We both were better off after the ex-boyfriend/deadbeat dad left the picture. Spooky sticks to me like glue.

Ribbit, also known as The Little Lion, who is the dominant one of the two, came to live with us almost two years ago now, after my brother's divorce where his wife decided not to take her cats with her, and since my brother is allergic, the cats needed new homes.

Ribbit and Spooky don't exactly get along well all the time. Ribbit terrorizes her, and she runs and hides. But they also play together at times, and the other day, they were lying in the laundry basket, and Spooky was giving Ribbit a bath, which was the most precious thing I've seen in a long time. He just laid there, looking indignant, yet complacent, and let her lick his fur.

So these are my companion animals, Ribbit and Spooky. I don't know what I'd do without them.

I've had other cats in my life, like Buttons, who kept me company and laid on my head when I was suicidally depressed many times, and Tuffy, who did the same and had six toes, because he was a "Hemingway cat".

Do you have any pets? Do they help you in your hard times?

 This is Spooky last night. She likes to lie on the computer monitor, where she no longer actually fits because she's a little on the fluffy side now (ahem), while I'm online  This is Ribbit last night in the living room
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