In a brief reprieve from my dating life (of lack thereof), allow me to talk about my cats. 

This is not a euphemism. 

I have two cats – Loki and Bartleby. They are both 13 years old. 

I found Loki in 2004 outside of my parents’ house. He was hiding out in the woods. Tiny little meowing kitten. My sister lured him to her the next day by putting tuna on her fingers. He lived with my parents during my first year of college, then he’s lived with me. 

I adopted Bartleby from the Plano Animal Shelter in 2005. He was already about a year old. His shelter name was “Louis.” I can’t remember if the boys got along at first. Probably not. Of course, now they can regularly be found snuggled together. 

It was just me and the boys until 2008. 

Loki has been overweight; now he is not. Bartleby is ginormous. Seriously. He weighs over 20 pounds. He is not diabetic. He is somewhat active in that he races me down the stairs to his food bowl. 

Bartleby avoids my bedroom unless the dogs and I are out of town. Loki sleeps on my bed near my pillows most nights, but not always. 

Bartleby is very interested in the backyard, though he doesn’t get to go out there. He is also fairly personable, introducing himself to company when I have company over. Loki tends to hide. 

Loki is my talker. He is a Russian Blue. Meows a lot. He will sit on the landing of the stairs (where the sound is amplified) and just yowl for no apparent reason. He sings the song of his people. 

Bartleby loves jumping in the bathtub after I’ve gotten out of the shower. He also waits for me to refill the water bowl. I have one of those running water fountains, but I have no where to put it as of right now. 

The cats are not very good travelers. They do not go to Texas with me now that I live in Ohio; however, when I lived in the Dallas area, and even when I lived in Oklahoma, they would ride. Bartleby shit in his carrier more than once. Peed as well. He peed on the floorboard of my car, too, at one point. I don’t remember Loki shitting in his carrier ever. On the move from Oklahoma to Ohio, they were in the cab of the moving truck with my dad along with a litter box, allowed to roam free of their crates. 

Both cats come see me when I’m in the bathroom. Just being in my presence starts Bartleby purring. 

They get along with the dogs for the most part, though Finn enjoys chasing Loki if he spots him in the hallway. On the bed next to me, Loki will rub his head on Finn’s but if Finn sees Loki leap off the bed, a chase ensues. 

Both of my cats are declawed. I know people will call me barbaric for that. They are indoor-only cats, though I know that’s not really an excuse. I do not plan on getting another cat after my cats pass away, so I cannot say whether I would declaw a cat again (probably not).

Indeed, I do not plan on getting additional cats after mine pass away. I love my boys, but I loathe litter boxes. I tried to train them to use the toilet… that was disastrous, especially since I just had one toilet in my apartment. 

Last summer, I had my cats shaved. They are apparently too lazy to groom themselves and I am a bad parent in that I do not brush them regularly. Loki’s hair especially gets matted as he is getting older. 

I am considering shaving them again, only doing it myself this time. A professional was $50 a cat plus tip, but clippers are around $25. That’s what inspired this post – the idea of shaving them myself. I’ve used clippers on dogs before. I’d give my dog Zeeke a haircut with scissors or clippers and it looked like he had feathers! 

Wouldn’t that be an interesting Tinder opener? “Would you help me shave my cats?” Could lead to some interesting misunderstandings… 

It might also be an interesting first date. “You’re going to hold my cats while I shave them.” 

Shaving my cats myself is also the only reason I can think to have a GoPro camera. I’d totally record the experience for posterity. We’ll see. I still haven’t bought clippers.