Lamie is one of Tommy’s daughters, and the most similar in terms of character and behavior. Like her mother, Lamie is tough and intolerant, and like her mother, this toughness was tested early in life. When Lamie was a tiny kitten, she, her sisters, mother, aunt, and cousins were subjected to a violent attack by their drug-raged owner. Lamie was injured during the attack, which left her unable to use her hind end properly. After Joe and I rescued Lamie and the rest of her family and brought them home, she gradually recovered full use of her hind legs.
Whether the result of her early injury or just an unfortunate roll of the genetic dice, Lamie is extremely drug-sensitive. When I took all five kittens to the vet for spay/neuter surgeries at around 6 months of age, her siblings and cousins recovered fully from the anesthetic by late that afternoon. Lamie, however, continued to feel the effects of the anesthesia for 3 ½ days before her body finally managed to process it out of her system. Many years later as a senior adult, Lamie underwent another surgery, lightly anesthetized with isoflurane. This anesthesia should have left her body almost immediately after surgery, but again Lamie’s body was slow to process the drug out.
Lamie’s sensitivities extend to physical contact, as well. While she enjoys the occasional stroking and scratching, even the sight of a comb or brush, or the slightest tug on a mat will send her into a man-eating fury. Unfortunately, she mats very badly every spring. The worse the mats, the shorter and more violent her temper. I discovered last year that the easiest way to deal with her mats is to shave them off with my electric clipper while trying to stay out of the way of teeth and claws. It’s a strategy that holds considerably less risk of sending me to the ER for a blood transfusion than trying to work her mats out by hand.
This fiery feline also commands fear and distance among the 4-leggeds. Cats and dogs alike give Lamie a wide berth, lest they feel the wrath of her weapons. This has always been the case, but now that Lamie is an old girl (18 years) with substantial arthritis, she makes even more of a point of defending her personal space. Like her mother and siblings, she now spends most of her time away from high traffic areas or under pieces of furniture that afford protection from oblivious dogs.
For some reason, the significantly younger Feather has recently taken to sleeping beside Lamie from time to time. This is a new alliance for him, and an unexpected one. But Lamie seems to accept his presence kindly, and in so doing, has become The Pride’s first cougar.