After Yelena passed away, we didn’t think Yeti could handle another kitten in the house. We went back to Ttcats to see if they had a retiring queen looking for a forever home. We were introduced to a charmer named Emma, who had been bred several times and never managed to have kittens. (While she did not travel well— drooling the whole way on any long journey— they did manage to show her once and she earned Grand Champion.)
She proved to be an energetic creature, very affectionate, and playful; her favorite toy was fuzzy pompoms, which she would carry around in her mouth to take to the place where she wanted to play with them. She was quite food-driven— apt to shoving Yeti out of the way to get at his food if he dined at too leisurely a pace— and took well to being bribed with treats, especially Churu. She was a lapcat for five minutes at a time, as if she was recharging briefly before setting out on her next adventure.
Emma had a lot in common with Yeti: both of them happy to roll over and show you a fluffy belly for petting, both of them energetic and playful, both happy to meet new people. She wanted very much to be his friend, and for a long time he was having none of it; it took about half a year before he would let her nestle next to him on the sofa.
At one point, she developed a skin allergy that required that we put her in a sweater to prevent her from scratching herself, which we were able to clear up with the aid of our local Dermatology for Animals. Putting her in a sweater cranked her drama dial up to eleven, as if she were hamming it up: “Woe is me! I am despondent! ... hey, is that food? NOM NOM NOM” A high dose of steroids, plus an elimination diet and some Bravecto for possible mites, took care of the itching, and we gradually worked her back up to all the old proteins she was eating, much to her relief— the restricted diet did not include enough treats!
Mara works from home, and Emma gleefully supplied her with distractions, demanding snuggles or at least a hand on her; she became a furry device stand for a lot of testing.
At her third-birthday checkup, the vet pronounced her healthy but a bit thin. During some emergency construction chaos in the house shortly thereafter, she developed a sniffle, which we (and the vet) initially thought were allergies. We gave her antihistamines, added HEPA filters, and I did a ton of vacuuming and mopping to reduce dust, but she didn’t improve; it took a while to progress before they did bloodwork and found enough anomalies to send her for more tests with the experts at Sage. She had contracted feline infectious peritonitis (FIP), which is rare in cats over 2 year old; we did our best with modern medicine, nutrition, treats, and affection, but FIP leaves very few survivors. She passed away on Saturday, June 9. If you would like to donate in her memory, SOCK FIP are researchers at UC Davis looking for a cure.