Monday, July 1, 2013

Our Animal Herd: Bailey

It's animal week at The Holland House. You've read some stories about our animals before, but we thought we'd dedicate one day a week to each of our "girls", and how they came to be a part of our family.

Many many years ago while in college, I was sitting around my apartment one night when I heard this pathetic meowing coming from the front door. I opened it to find the scrawniest cat with the biggest bug eyes, just meowing her little head off for food/attention. She immediately started rubbing against my legs and walked right on in. Not knowing if my roommate would be ok with this new addition, I fed the cat a little lunchmeat and sent her on her way so that I could make an informed decision about keeping the scrawny thing. Roommate said yes, and we decided that if the cat showed up again the next night, we'd let her in. Of course she showed up, and happily waltzed right in when I opened the door for her.

(I guess I should have prefaced by saying that we always had cats growing up, and all of them were rescued from the streets, so I didn't hesitate at all about taking one in.)

I named her Bailey because Party of Five was popular at the time (man am I dating myself). My best guess is that she was around 1, and had likely been abandoned by another resident at the apartment complex. She was just as sweet as could be, was litter box trained, and desperate for affection. You could not sit/stand/sleep without her wanting to be on top of you. But I loved her for it, and she has been right there by my side through thick and thin.

She gained weight quickly and has been in relatively good health ever since (minus her current thyroid problem). In fact, she went from scrawny to fat in no time, and was the butt of many family jokes for awhile. She also gained many fans, as my family grew to love her quickly, as did anyone else who came by to visit.

The Holland House: Bailey in a bow

Bailey was perfectly fine being an only cat, but the sucker in me decided to take in another stray at a different apartment just a few years ago. Bailey welcomed the new cat into the apartment and while they mostly get along, they have their "sisterly moments" too.

The Holland House: Bailey and Katie

The Holland House: Cat Fight
Working out their differences over a spot on the couch.

More like a dog than a cat, she prefers to be by people and will follow you almost anywhere. She's also known for being a little mischievous, and will do just about anything to get some treats (including jumping up on the kitchen counter to get ahold of the treat bag), or joining with the dogs when treats are being handed out.

The Holland House: Can on the counter

The Holland House: Treat Time

The transition of moving into Hank's home with two dogs was an easy one for her, and she asserted her "alpha cat" as much as possible, though it's a constant battle between Bailey and Maddie the Peekapoo.  She has been able to hold her own through countless foster dogs and kittens, and now the permanent addition of a puppy. She even reluctantly played surrogate mom to her own mini-me, foster kitten Bess. In her golden years though, she prefers to sleep. Aside from food, naps are her most favorite thing.

The Holland House: Bailey and Bess

At an estimated 14 years of age now, she's lived a really great life. I can only hope that she has a few more good years left in her, because the thought of saying goodbye to her breaks my heart. I know that I'll need to be prepared for that at some point, but until then I'll keep spoiling her with treats and snuggles as much as she wants. She's brought so much love into my life, and has been there with me through some pretty rough times. I'm so grateful that she picked me on that one fateful night.

1 comment:

  1. I remember Bailey doling out lots of cuddly friendliness when I would visit Pippi at your place - What a charmer!


Site Design By Designer Blogs