Now My "Big Boy!" 2000
Well this is Dakota aka "Dusty". He just celebrated his 15th birthday this year & runs around like he is still a kitten! You see a flash in your peripheral, over furniture etc! I can't even move that fast & when I think of how old he is with "cat years" man! I would be so lucky to be a Senior like him! He inspires me. How did he get his name(s) well Dusty was my first pet as an adult. I had been looking for a grey kitty with blue eyes. Not sure why? Just thought that is what I wanted. I never had a cat before. Our family had dogs (see below) so I was a bit worried but now I love them. I had been to the pet store & found a kitten which was shiny brown with black tips on each hair. I was with my mom & just held this kitten & played with it for over an hour & still was not sure. My mom & I left the pet store with no kitty. In the parking lot my mom said, "What would you have named it anyway?" I quickly said "Luscious". Well that would have been an interesting name if it was a "he". I don't know what it was. Well that was it...she should have never asked me to give "it" a name. I was hooked. I ended up calling the pet store a few days later telling them to hold the kitten for me that I would come pick it up. I could not stop thinking about it. I called my mom & she said "that is funny they were going to sell it to me today...I was in there to see if it was still there." When I went to pick the kitten up they would not sell it to me. They had it in the back & said it was sick & they didn't know why. I ask them to show me & it really did look very sick, not at all like the kitten I had seen. Then I noticed this grey kitten in the cage. I said, "Where did he come from?" They told me he was returned the night before because the daughter was allergic. I picked him up & that was it...he was purring & made his way in my heart! Now you tell me...could you leave this cute kitty in a cage? :-)
As a Kitty Born 3/4/90
Now Dakota is my favorite name! I'd probably name my first child it...which will be like an Indiana Jones thing..."That was the cat's name!" Ha! I had a roommate at the time & she was frustrated I did not have a name after a week. She said, I'm calling him "Velcro" because he would cling to her nylons with his nails. I said, "No Way" so one day when he went between the refridgerator & the wall to get his ball & came out all dusty I figured I had found a name! You could not tell what was dust & what was his own fur! So officially on papers for showing he is "Dakota" but we just call him "Dusty". Yes, by the way I did show him his first 2 years! The judges at the time did not know what he was but loved him & awarded him many 1st place ribbons! It is only recently that I have learned he is most likely a breed which began around the time he was born called Nebelung !
I've only seen 2 other cats like him so far! If you have a Nebelung or one that looks like him, post a comment! I'd especially like to know longevity & health issues! This breed is just now entering older adulthood! Dusty has been the perfect first cat! Up until recently Dusty has NEVER been sick...well he ate a bee once & reacted! Then there was the time he got stuck in the fireplace when my parents closed the flumes! Then he alerted my mom there was a raccoon in her house! The best was when I was working on my PhD at MSU. This was a big move for us. He certainly earned his keep there! I remember the first day I saw it! GOOD LORD...if there was ever a reason I'd get married just to have a guy to take care of "icky bugs" this would be the reason! I want in my vows he will kill all Flying Tree Roaches! I saw this thing & freaked!Then when I got my gym shoe to kill it & it FLEW that was it! I lost it completely! Now, the only other time I saw one was when Dusty was at my door making this cackling sound I have never hear before. I opened the door & there was another! Dusty is now conditioned to run when he sees me with my gym shoe in my hand! Ha! I have NEVER heard Dusty make that sound again! Poor Dusty...he probably just wanted to play with him! BTW...Dontae Jones, drafted to the NBA, was a student of mine & he was friends with Erik Dampier also an NBA player! I'm going to write a book on Dusty..."The Adventures of Dusty Dakota" ...sounds better reversed! :-) In the last 2 years the vet caught him just into renal failure and having pancytopenia, where one's white & red blood count is low. I brought him to UofI & 2 bone marrow draws found nothing! We are thinking it may be the norm of this breed?! We changed his food & he is now doing great! He & I have "an understanding!" He is to win the Guiness Book of World Records for the "Oldest Living - Healthy - Cat" and a record that will NEVER be beat! :-) I don't know what I'd do without him! I mean how do you not love a man who kisses your nose at night! :-) Oh& your eyebrows! Did you know that is marking "their terriority!" How special is that!
Ok..then there is... "Country" (shake head!) - my youngest brother's cat who I was asked to adopt about 5 years ago due to his allergies. He was named for my brother's love of country music. Country is an attention hound & really should be an only cat! He really would rather Dusty leave! Well Dusty has been my spoiled baby for soooo long! Country has been fondly nicknamed by my friends as"Osma Bin Laden" because he will terrorize Dusty! They will play too, but Country has a habit of attacking Dusty when he is sleeping. Of course this does get my attention - but it is hard to ignore him when hethinks he is auditioning for the "WWE!" I've tried to modify his behavior but he has just managed to modify my behavior. He has conditioned me to pet him when he takes both paws & grabs my arm while I type at the computer! I tell you! Country is also a Bulimic! I need to get him into a Cat Support Group! I don't know if he has some trauma from "kittenhood"? Maybe he wasn't fed for days because there are times when he sees food & acts like "Bluto" (for those old enough to remember!) in the "Animal House's" Cafeteria! Country also has Bluto's great love for the ladies...well I'm not sure....he "loves" this HUGE squeaky rat! Well, I think you'll get the picture if I just say I have to put the rat up on top of the refrigerator! ;-) I think I need to put him on "Double Secret Probation!" Now Country can move fast when running after Dusty but like many fast cats in the wild, he doesn't last very long! Two jumps for a hanging cat toy & he is lying down huffing & puffing! Ha! I try to exercise him as much as I can. Country has Dusty by about 4 lbs! Dusty is more quiet & wise than Country. Country is just "Mr. Goofy!"
Now I have quite a Zoo! I have 4 Bettas - purple ones are usually called "Passion"...but I haven't been naming them lately. I have 3 hermit crabs. I will tell you why I have them...interesting. It was while I was down at MSU that I first saw them. I was at a town fair and I saw these beautiful shells & THEY MOVED! I thought how cool! Well if you look at the Hermit Crab themselves they are not really that cute! Quite frankly one might say they are rather ugly...but this was interesting to me...the combination of beauty with them & how one should look at the whole rather than a part! :-) You have to find the beauty! So I have had a fondness for hermit crabs ever since! I've only once heard them talking to each other! They cackle too...and quite loudly! I heard it in the other room!
I also have 2 Red-Eye Sliders named "Sam" & "Ella"! I know...you can moan...not very creative! I'll get some pictures of them up soon! I've had them now for 4 years this July! I'm quite surprised I haven't killed them! I was in Myrtle Beach & well every gift shop had these cute guys...that is another point..."Ella" ...I think I have 2 males so I just tell him he has a French name! Ha! I had 2 turtles like these in college & well the pet store didn't tell me about having a heat light or they will hibernate! I thought they were dead & threw them down the trash...now I'm not too sure they were dead! I'm just sick about it! Sam & Ella are HUGE now! My summer task is to find them a 75 or 90 gallon tank! They are so much fun to watch though! I hand feed them Super Worms! Nope, I don't mind worms! I will put them on my hook to fish...I haven't been fishing since I was a teen & I really miss it! Well considering I'm a Pisces it makes perfect sense I guess that I would like these turtles since they are both land & water! They live like 80 years! Ugh! I told my nieces I would leave Sam & Ella to them! HA!
I have a separate entry now on Sam & Ella if you would like to see some pix!
Well there is one last "sweetie" I can't forget to mention! This is "my dog!" Well you see my cousin won 2 puppies at a carnival when I was 12 yrs old. We were moving to a new house & my mom was sooo cool! Well I'm not sure, I'll have to ask her if she did this purposely! My cousin offered us the male & kept the female. We put this adorable puppy in "the old station wagon" (remember the yellow one with the paneling?) with us 4 kids and headed to ask my dad if we could keep him. My dad was all tired & sweaty working on the land our new house would be on. Mom got out & asked my dad and based upon his expression we all thought he said "no" and we all started to bawl our eyes out! My dad looked at the 4 of us & said "What????" We just sobbed "Why can't we keep him?" He said, "Who said you couldn't?" Quite frankly I'm not sure my dad even got to reply! Ha! My folks had had a toy poodle when they first got married by had to sell it after a few of us kids were born since he started to pee on our toys out of jealousy. I'm sure glad they didn't decide to get rid of us! Ha! We had had fish, gerbils & a rabbit after that but no dog. My older brother thought his fish were thirsty one day & gave them a glass of milk! Ha! I still remember the day my dad came running down the stairs in his boxers because I screamed so loud! It must have been very hard to explain to a little girl why a mother gerbil would eat her babies. What memories! Well when we got our new puppy home, my dad said we would take a "family vote" to name him. I still remember being in our parlor, my dad with the Enclycopedia looking up British names...not quite sure but thinking he was some type of labrador I guess. He was a mix. Then dad made up little strips of paper to make it anonymous! Parents can be so wonderful! I still remember voting for Dryden! No one else did...now that I think of it...not that great of a name I guess. "And the survey said".... "Rugby"! It was kinda perfect because we called him "Rug's" for short & when we first brought him into the house he ran from the front door to the back door & grabbed the colored string door rug & threw his head side to side with it! Ugh! Rugby was a runner though! Open the door & he was gone for hours! He'd come home sinking of his adventure through the creek, full of burrs, which I would have to pull out & many times bringing home his trophy bird head! One day my Uncle came to our house & excitedly announced he had caught Rugby. We turned our head looking at Rugby lying on the chair sleeping peacefully & said, "Ah...Rugby is here! Who do you have?" We all had a laugh & still joke about it at family parties! Rugby visited the principals office at my grammar school (hid under her desk!) and even went to McDonalds! Ha! He would let any stranger in the house and was the biggest wimp when it came to thunder, but no squirrel or chipmunk ever could get past him! In fact, they knew just how far his chain outside would go! Ha! Unfortunately Rugby died about a month after I got Dusty. This was very hard for me since I was the oldest & took care of him the most. Sometimes I think my grandpa sent me (from Heaven) Dusty to deal with Rugby's passing. My grandpa took care of Rugby when I left for college, though Rugby could have came with me the way he took care of him! Ha! He would share his beer with him! Ha! Actually come to think of it, grandpa would have had a blast at college! Ha! You see Dusty was born on my grandpa's birthday. Well maybe someday I'll know! I miss you Rugby! You were awesome!
Look at that Module Swivel Rocker from the '70s! :-)