When the festival of lights didn't quite light him up..
I held Louie close and rubbed his head to console him.
His heart was thumping hard and fast and the fear was evident in his eyes. His ears down and tail flat on the ground when I picked him up. Earlier with every loud burst he sprinted to under the nearest couch or what he with his little kitten brain thought was the safest place for him to be.
The night before, he had peed in 4 different places out of fear. Louie never pees outside his litter box – unless he’s immensely distressed.
Louie’s not just a 4-month-old kitten for us though we’ve had him for just a couple of months. That little furball is often the fulcrum of our emotional stability – even at times when it’s not evident to others around.
When my wife breaks down and cries in the middle of the night, Louie would come close, lick her forehead, place his front paw on her face, and then would lie down next to us, he can’t speak (in fact he hardly mutters a sound even when in pain – we sadly feel he’s got a vocal disability because of which he can’t mew like other kittens), and yet he gives us a feeling that he understands – he’s been our emotional support even when our ‘human’ family wasn’t around.
They said cats don’t sense emotions or never get attached to people – I believed them of course - I preferred dogs too for that reason. They were so wrong. Louie was the living proof of that for us.
I’ve seen people make fun of those who keep pets - they just don’t realise that for ‘hoomans’, those four-legged creatures aren’t just animals – they are family. There is a parental investment in raising them and today we ourselves realise how much of a bond we can, as humans, share with a ‘cat’ (or a dog). Perhaps that’s why people these days who keep them close are called ‘pet parents’ and not ‘owners’ as they were once called.
Right now, Louie needs our support so we take turns and hold him and keep him close to us till the loud crackers outside stop. He’s confused and scared and looks at us as if to ask why? We just rub his head; wish we could’ve explained.
No point criticising them – it’s a festival after all. And besides, you don’t want to criticise anybody anymore – lest you be seen as oppressors of religious freedom (hey, if they can do it, so can we). It’s nothing to do with religion I want to tell them – those family members of ours who have tails just don’t distinguish religion or occasion – all they know is that those loud noises scare them – a lot.
Louie’s gone to sleep now – right next to us because the noises have come down. An unusually loud burst startles him, but then he’s reassured we’re around now and calms down.
Tomorrow he should be back to being himself, and should forget what happened. I’m sure he won’t hold a grudge against us for his distress.
He’s not human to hold a grudge.