Dogs and Cats          - 2/8/2010      <--Prev : Next-->

They are an unlikely pair . Ugly and Teddy. Ugly is very aptly name although he has a beauty all of his own. No mother every really thinks her child is ugly after all.

Predominately white with albino eyes, black splotches and an endearing pink nose, Ugly was born plain but has a feisty fabulous personality. Sadly his first owners had him "de- clawed" - an abominable and inhuman practice, however in spite of his disability Ugly is no ordinary cat. Teddy on the other hand is just a plain old ginger tom with brilliant topaz eyes, a slick of eyeliner at the corner, and a slinky disposition.

SheHoo Must Sing brought them home to Zimbabwe after a 4 year stint in a Texas university. They arrived via Lufthansa and we were peeved that we did not even attain any air miles for them ! Now these solid gold cats had spent their formative kitty years in an air conditioned Texas apartment. Everything in Texas is air conditioned otherwise Texas would not be there . Its 40 degrees and rising in the summer and minus all sorts of freezing things in the winter.

Ugly had been a dumpster cat before he was found, frozen into a little white icicle on SheHoo must sing's car bonnet. He adapted easily to apartment life, although he found it rather constraining not being able to jump out of the window (the apartment was after all on the third floor) Teddy on the other hand was born into apparent life and thrived on beds, settees and duvets quite happily. When the financial decision to ship them home to Mother was made, we were delighted. Caged animals are anathema to both of us, and Zoos and are on our verboten list.

I was thrilled to have the privilege of introducing Ug and Ted to our green and verdant garden, and our existing motley crew of dogs and cats..

Ugly took over the household immediately, he lay on his back the moment he arrived and started to play with the Great Dane, who, somewhat surprised, examined him all over with her gentle maws. Teddy was terrified, he had never met any animal bigger than a fly in all his years. It was fascinating seeing the two of them adapting from Texas apartment hood to suburban Zimbabwe. Teddy's topaz eyes had never seen dogs before, but more entrancing was the fact that his feet had never felt the touch of damp green grass.

He metamorphosed before our eyes, after the initial shock he leopard crawled across the lawn patting the prickly grass in trepidation and gazing in awe at the open sky and the waving trees above him. It was the sounds that entranced Ted at first, his only known sounds had been little girls' voices, the telly and the sound of the air conditioner !! How he was overwhelmed by the sounds of birds, airplanes, branches waving in the wind, and dogs barking !!

Ugly soon took Ted "under his wing" and taught him how to catch birds, it was fascinating watching Ugly slink into a feline ferret stance, and virtually beckon Ted to follow him in his ornithological pursuit.

"Sssh" you could almost hear Ug meow to Ted, "one foot in front of the other, keep low in the grass, slowly, slowly, catchee birdie"

As bird catching is frowned upon in our garden, the two took to ratting with a fierce intensity. Zimbabwe has a bad rat problem as our sanitation leaves something to be desired and every day two rats are proudly brought to mother and deposited with glee at my feet.

Ugly and Teddy God bless them for what they give to the family.
They bring about a new dimension to the old saying
"Dogs have Owners, Cats have Staff."