Research, so I’ve read, shows that single people with pets live longer, on average, than those without. This is put down to a more positive outlook on life by the former. Certainly, Cappucino, and other cats (and dogs) I’ve had could be a good, uncritical listener. Whatever you tell them, they don’t disagree, and we take this, and the fact that they do not immediately run away, as agreement. It is usually much simpler, and less stessful, living witha cat or/and dog than a fellow human.

Our kittens, Late and Jahe, are still to little to be companion animals, much, but they are a constant source of laughter, and, therefore, are conducive to a happy environment. For example, Martini told us that Latte jumped from the stair into a tall, Egyptian-style vase, from which it was impossible for her to escape. Martini heard the whimpers and rescued her.

Last week, while Latte and I were watching television (I was, anyway), a mouse ran into the lounge. Latte had never seen one, but it moved, so she followed it. By the time I got to the dining room, there were two little cats sitting under  the table looking out into the garage area – actually catching the mouse was, at this stage in their short lives, beyond them.

However, going up to the drying area on the roof and pulling washing from the racks is within their capabilities, as is darting out into the front garden any time a door is left open. How they do not end up a mass of bruises by the end of their play with each other is a mystery to us. They are happy to hurt each other, but not not too much, and they bear no grudges, even from the odd smack or water bottle spray when they transgress.

It’s not possible to be “down” when they are around, because they are guaranteed to to do something cute or funny. Even when they are asleep, a quiet stroke of them is reassuring to their “carers”.

  

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