“Dogs and cats living together!”

Last Saturday, a couple of friends came to visit: C and LM. Don’t worry, all three of us tested negative on an at-home COVID test before we met.

LM brought her dog, Luna, who is a Miniature Schnauzer. LM has brought some of her dogs to my place before, but this was the first time she’s done so since I adopted my cats Jiku and Shuba. If you click on that link you’ll see them as tiny kittens; they’re now about ten months old.

Jiku! His full Klingon name is jI’IHqu’, which means “I am very beautiful.”
Shuba! His Klingon name is Sub’a’, which means “a great hero.”

At one point in his life, Jiku was snuggly with strangers:

Snuggly Jiku
The two people playing with Jiku were John and Jane Smith at my Masquerade Party.

However, in the months since that photo was taken, Jiku has grown to really dislike having his claws clipped. At this point, when I have visitors, he assumes that they’re here to clip his claws. He runs and hides. So most of my visitors see only Shuba, who is outgoing and totally without dignity when it comes to begging for chin and tummy rubs.

Let’s get back to Saturday. The question that must surely be on your mind is: How did Shuba react when meeting a dog, Luna, for the first time?

Shuba and Luna
Shuba sniffs at the strange new being.
Shuba and Luna
Luna sat in C’s lap for a while. Shuba is thinking about whether he should jump into C’s lap as well. He decided against it.

Although we did not know it at the time, Jiku was lying under the chair that C is sitting on in the above photo. He eventually came out to cautiously inspect the situation over three hours later, long after the Evil Humans had clearly given up their claw-clipping plans (and Luna was sleeping in his crate).

The above two photos may give the impression that Shuba spent a long time inspecting Luna. Actually, those photos were opportunistic. For the most part, the cat ignored the dog. He spent his time more productively, begging for pets and seeing if he could convince any humans to share their food.

I am curious about how they would have acted if Luna had been given the freedom to move and play as she chose. However, LM and C kept Luna restrained the entire time. The main reason was that if we’d let Luna roam, she would have made a bee-line for cats’ food and water. It’s likely that would not have had a positive outcome.

I’m glad that everything turned out so well. It means that my cats can calmly deal with visitors, even furry ones, in their own way. It’s not like it was with Shadow. Jiku and Shuba can handle others the same way they treat one another.

Napping together
Shuba and Jiku will occasionally nap together on top of the cat tree.

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