|A portrait of Archie I completed a few years ago.|
Let me reassure you that Archie is fine. In fact, Archie is more than fine - he's tremendous! He's no longer at the bottom of the canine/feline pecking order around here and is now king of his own castle with three doting human slaves. Archie basically packed his little kitty-cat bags and moved out!
Well... it didn't exactly happen quite that way. A few months ago when I was in the throes of selling my house, the critters (Lily, Hugo and Archie) and I moved in with some friends to ensure my house remained pristine and pet-hair-free while it was being shown to potential buyers. My friends had recently lost their own two cats - geriatric brothers - to age related illnesses that struck them down within weeks of one another. Bereft and for the first time cat-less, they welcomed us into their home even if it did mean making room for a lively cocker spaniel in addition to me and the two felines.
To make a long story short, a love story developed between them and Archie. As our stay drew to a close, they cautiously asked if I'd consider letting them give him a permanent home. I needed a bit of time to mull it over - after all, when an animal joins my family, it's for life - so I agreed to a temporary trial period. However, I knew in my heart Archie was not thriving with me. Despite my best efforts at behaviour management, his reserved, cautious nature and skittishness meant he was often ill at ease as the boisterous puppy and kitten duo of Lily and Hugo grew into rambunctious young adults. This situation would not improve in the new, much smaller home that we would be moving to.
|A playful wrestling match between Lily and Hugo|
Lily always teased Archie unmercifully. As for Hugo... well... here's a picture:
So ultimately I realized the opportunity for a loving new home would be in Archie's best interests. My friends would have a cat in their lives once again, and Archie would be the solo centre of attention. Happily for me, I'd be able to visit regularly.
It didn't take long to see that Archie was thrilled with the arrangement. Although I suspect he initially missed his little buddy Hugo (and I know Hugo missed him), time passed and we all adapted.
|HRH Archie on his new throne.|
He has new places to nap:
And fun things to occupy his time:
And can relax completely, blissfully without fear of being leapt on by an exuberant young housemate!
He's even made a new friend:
And as for life at home, Lily and Hugo appear to be quite content with one another's company.
May we all live happily ever after.