Tuesday, 5 July 2011

MY CATS and DOGS (Part I )

When I was growing up we always had a cat or two, so I´m quite fond of cats and they seem to know that even though I don´t go looking, I´m a bit of a magnet for them.

After I got married in South Africa, a friend asked us to look after his small dog until he found adequate accommodation for him and his family after a move to another town. Six months later when he came back, he realized that we were so fond of the little dog - "Patusca" (which in Portuguese means cute or comic) - that he let us keep her. She was a bundle of energy and very clever.

A few years later Patusca managed to run away and got herself pregnant!!  I should have had her sterilized I know, as it was such a long time ago, I don´t know if we didn´t have the money for it, or if it was a bit of ignorance and stupidity. Anyway along came 3 little pups, and we managed to give away 2 and kept the only female - Gipsy, who wasn´t as clever or as confident as her mother.

Gipsey (black & white) and Patusca (cream) in their favourite  kids sofa
Kitty relaxing on top of a teddy bear

Our kitten "Kitty"

We had also taken in a kitten - "Kitty" that had managed to jump into our enclosed yard to look for food in the rubbish bags and had stayed behind unable to jump back out. (she must have been brought in by the mother)

Years later I came home one day to find our little Patusca had been run over. We lived in a quiet street in George (South Africa), and Patusca used to squeeze herself under the gate, and stay on the verge, or sometimes in the middle of the road waiting for me to arrive from work. Someone must have been speeding, otherwise they would have seen her.
It was a very sad day for the kids and I, and we promptly dug a little hole in our back garden under a tree and had a little ceremony for her.

We decided to go to an Animal Shelter and adopt a dog to keep Gipsy company -  "Honey" who was a puppy Border Collie. Being a working dog, she got to work destroying our backyard garden, she dug a trench under the gate, so she could escape to the street, she used to run inside the house when we weren´t looking, and steal the kid´s toys, the cat´s food....
Honey and Gipsey

We had a great time with her though and the kids spoiled her.
Unfortunately when we left South Africa we had to give her to a friend as we were going to stay with family for a couple of months in an apartment, until our container arrived - so there was no place for a dog.



In Portugal, after we moved into our own apartment, we had 3 cats, all adopted again - one kitten found under a car - "Snuggy", one followed my daughter home "Cusca" (Curious), years later “Branca” (White) came to live with us, after my Mother in law died.

When we moved to Australia we left our 3 cats behind with our daughter. Sadly one year later Snuggy passed away from cancer – possibly due to TV radiation as she used she used to sit on top of the tv to keep herself warm (just as in the next photo)
Snuggy and Cusca on top of the tv (Snuggy´s usual resting spot)

The very shy Branca

Aren´t we such good friends?  Snuggy hugs Cusca

Snuggy in a basket
Branca passed away in 2010 of old age. 
Cusca fell from a second floor window, and maybe due to some veterinary incompetence after having plaster for a few weeks her leg started to gangrene and had to be partially amputated.  Although she was always small, she is a fighter and has no trouble getting around. She still lives with my daughter, and follows her everywhere in the house.
Keep tuned for the next chapter of the cats in our life, this time in Australia, and some more lovely photos of our 5 cats.


  1. Só um grande amor pelos animais pode levar uma pessoa a ir procurar a máquina fotográfica e ter o trabalho de os fotografar em momentos e posições especiais. Aos gatos e cães não se pode recomendar: "olha para a máquina,cheese, banana, smile. Vou fazer clic"!!!!
    Sobre a gata "cusca": Tem o nome apropriado, o seu olhar parece "cuscar" o que se passa à sua volta. Ser uma lutadora? Onde é que já li (será que li?) que os animais, com o tempo de convivência, acabam por aprender defeitos e virtudes dos donos? Eu sei que a dona da "cusca" é uma lutadora, no bom sentido.

  2. Nem sempre consigo apanhá-los nas melhores posiçoes para uma foto, mas como passo a vida a tirar-lhes fotos, alguma se irá aproveitar. xx

  3. Sami, tantos gatos e tantos cães, que coragem. Quem gosta de animais acaba por ter mais do que um, o que é uma dor de cabeça para quando se quer viajar. Como resolves isso?
    E já agora: já só escreves em inglês? Sabia bem ler alguma coisa em português.
    O teu jardim, de cactos, parece-me está muito bonito. O clima é bom para essas plantas ou há também frio e geada como cá?

  4. Olá L, de momento só temos 5 gatos. Quando viajamos, geralmente fica o nosso filho em casa a tomar conta dos gatos. Uma altura que saimos os 3 por 1 semana, pedi a uma colega que vinha dar-lhe de comer diáriamente. Se assim nao fosse teria que os por num "hotel para animais" mas com 5 gatos ficava caro!
    Tenho q pensar em escrever um blog em portugues ou escrever alguns posts em portugues ou em ambas as linguas. Obrigada pelo comentario sobre o jardim, gosto imenso de o ver através da janela da minha cozinha. Estamos de momento a meio do inverno (quase na primavera), o frio em Perth é menos que em Portugal, geada temos talvez uma duzia de dias por ano quando se acorda de manha e está a relva branca. Já enviei o link do teu blog para a minha mae que tem um blog literário.

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