Sunday, June 1, 2008
My twins are 17! Yes, they are identical twins. Or they were the first twelve years of their lives. Then Bixby, the one on top, started getting darker and Mouse, on the bottom, got lighter. The only explanation for that is Mouse has developed some weird health issues that could perhaps influence his coloring too. Much to his vet's amazement, he's still here and doing just fine even though he is down to six pounds.
And so is Bix, also a very happy and unexpected thing. He spent the first two years of his life having terrible crystal problems. At one point they were so bad the suggestion of removing his penis was made. Hm, though I am a firm believer of spaying and neutering a sex-change operation is not high on my list until every other option has been explored. I switched vets, to the one I have now, and after extensive analysis by various nationwide experts, it was decided he needed to drink more water. The solution, wet food only. He's been fine ever since. Oh a note for those of you who doubt the weight loss potential of added water, he's a perfect test. Bixby was up to 19 unhealthy pounds before his diet was switched. Within four months he dropped a third of that and has stayed the same ever since. Too bad there isn't a human equivalent of canned cat food.
When they were little they looked truly identical. Their personalities, however, are as different as night and day. Mouse would be very content being carried everywhere. In fact, I think he'd be happiest if I got one of those baby harnesses and took him with me everywhere I go. Bixby, on the other hand, would prefer to never be picked up. Even as a six-week old, one pound infant, he struggled against being held. Not that he doesn't like attention. All I have to do is look at him and he starts purring. And he loves to be hugged as long as I don't scoop him up to do it. Pet him and he gets all prancey and nudges my hand non-stop.
Another difference is their conversational habits. Mouse got his name because as a kitten he squeaked incessantly. He still does. I timed him once when he was making me insane. Every nine seconds until his voice gave out and even then he continued to try. Talk aboout frustrating! Imagine a cat, obviously aggravated, yowling in your face for hours. Bixby is the opposite although he's starting to speak up for himself now. For years, he rarely meowed.
Anyone who thinks cats don't communicate hasn't met these two. Mouse shares my pillow while I sleep. When he's ready for breakfast, he nibbles on my hair to wake me. Bixby generally sleeps on my foot. Every now and then they switch places. The only thing is Bix doesn't quite get it. Instead of pulling one hair at time he grabs a whole mouthful and tries to pick up my head. As soon as I ask what he's doing and scratch his chin I can see him laughing like a silly little kid. Look to the bottom of the bed and Mouse is there watching, snickering as well. And that's just one of the games they play. I'll save the rest for another time so Amarinda quits rolling her eyes.
As I said, today is their birthday. To celebrate, we're spending it on the screened in porch, watching the birds, napping in a sunbeam and eating pounces - them, not me. Tonight, join us for a feast of birthday tuna.