First, can you tell me a little bit about yourself: (sex, age, colour, special markings etc)?

I’m a female, 23 year-old, grey-striped kitty.  My special marking, although it’s not really a marking, is that I have a crook at the very end of my tail.  My Mom and Dad told me that it was caused when I tried to leave Heaven too early and the door shut on my tail when they tried to keep me – but I was in a hurry to find my humans to live with.

What is your earliest memory of living with your human family?

Seeing my Mom and Dad looking in on me through the grate of my cage at the shelter.  When they brought me home, the big house was a little scary but in no time, I knew every square inch.

What do you see as your role within your human family? What do you see as the cats’ role in society as a whole? Are they here on this planet to teach us humans about a better way of being?

My role is to be the soul of my human’s house, as a cat’s role in society is to be the source of inspiration, mystery, humour and love.  And my Dad tells me the more time he spends with people, the more he appreciates kitties, so I know he wishes the people of the world were more like kitties.

Do you have other felines in the household? Are they related to you? If unrelated (or even if related) do you all get on ok or is life a struggle to fit in?

When I first came to live with my Mom and Dad, there were two cats older than me there and they wouldn’t have anything to do with me!  So my Dad went back to the shelter and adopted my sister to be my companion.

Now, she’s gone, as are the other cats who were here when I arrived, but my Dad has rescued and adopted three more kitties in the past few years and my Mom adopted two dogs.  The other cats really don’t appreciate my personal space and were always trying to get my food.  And then they try to play with me but I’m too old for that.  Because my Dad loves me and didn’t want to see me stressed-out, he made me my own room!  I also don’t like the dogs barking but there’s nothing I can do about that since, after all, they’re dogs!  What do you expect?

We all know that cats are furry messengers (or Angels) sent by the Great Cat in the Sky, would you say that this ‘assignment’ has helped your humans to live their lives in better enlightenment or do they have a way to go before they reach that stage?

I can’t imagine any better humans to live with!  They anticipate and see to all my needs and Dad goes to special lengths to spend ‘special time’ with me when he’s home since I don’t get out of my room a lot.  Although I sleep a lot, I do like to sit on my Dad’s chest before his bed time and let him stroke me.

Would you say that the trouble with the world today is that there is no respect for all living things (humans or animal)?

As a famous man once observed, ‘the humanity of a people can be judged by their treatment of animals.’  From what I’ve seen, mankind has a long way to go to reach a feline’s level of enlightenment.

If you could stand up and voice your feelings about the world we live in, what do you think you’d like to say?

Make all my ‘senior’ food taste good and ground so that it won’t be a chore for me to eat and stay healthy!

Do you think if people settled disputes the ways cats do (arched backs, huge fluffed out tails and a bit of hissy spitting) that there would be no need for war or fighting?

Humans have their own version of that, but it’s usually much more violent and totally unnecessary.

If you could change one thing about living with your present human family, what would it be? Would this apply just to this family or all people in general?

I can’t think of anything I would change other than have my Dad work at home so that he can spend more time with me.  But everything else is fine or I would have left long ago.

People say that when they incarnate they’d like to come back as a cat because cats don’t seem to do anything other than lie around all day being waited on hand and foot and spoiled rotten. Would you want to incarnate as a human and toil and strive for 60 odd years before you could retire spending what’s left of your life in a broken down body or would you rather just be a cat?

Be a human instead of a cat?  You must be kidding!

What legacy would you like to leave to your human family and the other felines that share your home?

I would like for my humans to remember me fondly but not with sorrow – I’ll see my Mom and Dad again when they cross over and then we’ll have all the time we want.  For the other cats in the household, I hope that I have shown them that there is a benefit in sometimes sitting and watching, versus trying too hard to understand the world.  If you sit and watch long enough, you will figure it out.

How would you like to be remembered by those that love you when the Great Cat calls you home?

As the best cat ever!  And as their best friend, confidante, court jester and adventurer.

Are there any special needs that help to make your life bearable? By that I mean, a comfortable bed, good quality senior food, regular veterinarian check ups etc which have helped you cope with being a Pensioner Pussy Cat?

My Dad fixed me a room where he has his computer, so that he visits me a lot.  Next to his machine, he made me a nice ‘nest’ with my heating pad that’s always on to help my old joints.  He also has my food and water changed three times a day so it’s always fresh – and he buys the best moist food for me and even changes the variety daily so that I don’t get bored.  He also cleans my litter box in the room twice a day, he grows me catnip which he puts in a box for me to roll around in and also built me some stairs and ledge so that I can look outside and survey ‘my’ yard.  To help me feel better, he also installed a pheromone diffuser for my room.

My Mom gives me fluids three times a week so that the kidney disease won’t get me down and Dad gives me blood pressure medicine every night.  If I don’t feel well, they get me to the Doctor immediately.

These things don’t make my life ‘bearable’ – they make it fun!

Finally, what do you attribute to your longevity? Good food? Lots of naps? Living with kind people? Love? Good genes? Good veterinary practices?

It’s a combination of those things but the last several years, my Mom learned to give me fluids and without those, I wouldn’t be here to talk about it. 

Dad questions:

What has your life been like living with cats? Would you say that your life has been enriched? Would you say that you were a better person, less selfish, more loving, since having cats in your life?  What will life be like do you think if there were no animals to share our homes with? What has living with Chloe and her feline friends taught you? 

I can’t imagine what my life would be like if I didn’t have kitties to share it with.  Their unconditional love is an inspiration and I strive to be as loving and caring as the cats in my life.  Without an animal to share my life with, my house would be a very lonely, soulless place and I would be a much worse person for it.  Any time I feel stressed-out or uncomfortable with the world, all it takes is a little ‘kitty time’ to show me that I am contributing to their well-being as much as they contribute to mine.  Living with Chloe has shown me that if you ‘go with the flow’ and not get bothered by the little things in life, you will have a better life.  And the fact she is constantly showing me she loves me in ways I never thought of is a testament to her blessed position in my life.

Chloe was interviewed in response to a recent poll to find the oldest feline subscriber. At 23 years of age, Chloe and Jimmy are the most senior members of the Daily Mews family. And long may they reign!

John Grafton is Chloe’s Dad and you can read his writings here:  

Dogs Come when Called

"Dogs come when called. Cats take a message and get back to you."

"Of course, every cat is really the most beautiful woman in the room."

Edward Verrall Luca (essayist)

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