|Birth: ||Dec., 1997|
|Death: ||Feb. 20, 2012|
Lola was rescued from a Humane Society shelter in 1998, where she had lived most of her short, unhappy life until that point. In and out of animal hospital with respiratory infections, she had been adopted and returned twice for behavioural issues and was on the shelter's "death row" when I met her. The shelter believed she may have been physically abused, as they said she appeared to be rather fearful of people. I wasn't looking for a cat; I had gone to the shelter to donate a number of cat items following the death of my previous feline friend in a hit & run. Lola - then called "Patches", as were most of the shelter's numerous calicos - started throwing herself against the cage bars every time I walked by and I ended up taking her home.
The first few months were rough. She was very fearful, hissy and aggressive. She would lay in wait and attack when you walked past. At first I could barely get near her. My arms and ankles were shredded for weeks. Apparently the shelter were not entirely honest about just how bad her behavioural problems were. I had adopted Psycho Cat. After a couple of months working with her though, I was able to touch her without being attacked and maybe a month after that I was finally able to pick her up for the first time. She never did become a cuddly, fuzzy lap cat but at least she was able to be comfortable around humans and, eventually, other animals.
She had her quirks. I never managed to entirely break her of the habit of jumping on the counters, and consequently had to clean them every time I wanted to prep food, just in case she'd been up there and I hadn't seen her. I had to be especially careful to pack any bread items away every night or I would get up in the morning to find them half eaten. Loved bread, but other than that she would not touch any human food for many years. Only in the last couple of years of her life did she accept the occasional piece of tuna or chicken. She appeared to remain aloof from the other animals with whom she shared her space, but only as long as she thought there were no humans watching. I would find her sometimes huddled up with one of the other cats, or more recently the dog, and she would work in league with other animals whose skill complemented her own if there was some mischief the two couldn't achieve alone. She never could push a door open but she was an ace at pulling stuff so she would work with one of the other cats to get stuff out of the cupboards. More recently I found her and the dog going back and forth stealing paper off the table, ripping it to shreds and chasing it around the floor. The paper was on the table, the dog was on the floor and there was Lola shuttling between the two, alternating between tossing the paper on the floor and batting the shreds around.
For a cat who could barely stand noise or company when she first came into my life, she stuck with me through some of the biggest changes in my life, including five house moves, a divorce and the birth of a child. My daughter was born when Lola was about 8 years old. I was concerned at first that this rather anti-social, older, formerly aggressive cat might pose a problem with a new baby in the house but much to my surprise, other than one single early scratch, Lola accepted the new addition to the family with stoicism, even tolerating the tail pulling, running, jumping and general chaos a toddler brings to a household. In one house where we suffered from mice in the walls, which kept the baby awake for a time, Lola slept by her bedroom door as if to ward off the mice. Ironically she was a terrible mouser, although she did surprise us a few times - on one notable occasion catching and killing a large sewer rat.
Plagued by stomach problems in recent times, in the last few months of her life Lola started to lose weight at an alarming rate but despite her weakened state she remained alert, companionable and even occasionally pesky. After some initial reservations she had become friends with our new Yorkie pup and they spent her last night trotting around the house together, with the dog nuzzling her and licking her face. When she was found the next morning, it appeared Lola had died peacefully in her sleep. She was a patient and faithful friend to the last.
It's awful quiet around here in the evenings now without her arguing with the pup about who gets to sleep on the minuscule dining room mat. I miss her most while I'm getting ready for work; mornings can be lonely when you have to get up at 4am but she was always there to say hello and demand breakfast. Run free over the Rainbow Bridge, little Lola, be young and happy and play again... you were a good cat.
Specifically: At home
Created by: Mount Hope NY
Record added: Feb 22, 2012
Find A Grave Memorial# 85452197