Well actually he is a very big male cat. I say this because about a week ago I got a letter from a local governmental agency, which shall remain nameless, saying “it has come to our attention that you have an unlicensed dog in your home” and threatening some sort of legal consequences.
“Hmm,” I thought. Where did they get that idea. Then the proverbial light bulb illuminated: We had taken Max, our cat, into the local animal shelter for a free rabies shot.
Now Max is a very big boy. He weighs about 23 pounds and is about 36 inches long when he stretches out.
Does he look like a dog? I don’t think so.
So I called the number in the letter an assured them, as I pointed how incidentally I knew who had “ratted” us out, that we did not have a dog in this house. But we have had Max for the past nearly 14 years.
Actually Max has had us – for as anyone with a cat knows, the cat is in charge. We are basically his staff who cater to his every whim while he views us with detached interest. Every day it’s the same routine, we feed him, we let him up, we give him treats (when he indicates that it’s time), we pet him when he lets us, we feed him again, we go into the upstairs bath and turn on the tub so he can get a drink -always on his schedule-, and we end the day by feeding him. Yes, its clear he is in charge, not like dogs who basically flatter their owners and follow them around adoringly all day.
Cats do not do that. Max can survive without us for several hours a day until its time for the staff to provide for his needs.
We did have a dog in Alaska: Niki, a Samoyed. She was a beauty.
The cutest and prettiest dog I ever had. Most of the ones I had as a kid were what we called mutts. Usually a mix of something like a collie and a beagle with all the worst characteristics of each breed. They basically were out door dogs who came and went in and out of our lives with great regularity. We never had a dog in the country as long as we have had Max for a variety of reasons.
Niki lived with us and was mostly an indoor dog. When we left Alaska she went to live with another family as we were being assigned to Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada. We knew that an Alaskan dog would not be happy there in the desert heat.
So why did I call Max my Dog Spot?
Well for those who have lived in the west you know about Cal Worthington a car dealer up and down the west coast in the 1970-1990s. Even in Alaska the ubiquitous Cal had a dealership.
Each TV commercial began with Cal’s spiel, very similar to Michael Keaton’s Beetlejuice, that to make a deal he would stand on his head or eat a bug. And it always had Cal with his dog Spot, which was variously an elephant, camel, horse, iguana, or any other type animal, but never a dog.
Hmm I wonder if Cal’s son works at our local animal shelter?
For another story about a very BIG CAT see