Flashback – The Bigger They Are…

Let’s go back to October 2002, Julius’ first day here.  He seemed to be doing fine, and my only problem was that I was getting sicker and sicker so that instead of spending my entire time with the kitten I had to go and lie down for a few hours.  On the up-side, I knew I would be on a 24 hour clock for the next day or so, so that was something.

The next session was dinner time for both cats, although Gus got his portion downstairs. Julius was glad for the food and the distraction and did some playing.  The settings on the camera were so poor that the exposure time was about the same as a camera from the Civil War, so any motion by me or the subject means blur city.   He’s so tiny that the puff-ball is almost too big for him to move.

But before we go on, lets see a couple of pictures of old Gus back when he was not-so-old Gus.  I suppose he was between four and five when these pictures were taken, a few months before in the spring of 2002.

He used to like that vantage on the railing along the hall above the front door quite a lot. You can lean out like he is to see what is down below or sit on the back wall and be hidden.  He’s picked up a little more white hairs at the edges in a few places since then.

See I told you he liked it. This is actually a month or so before the other shot.  That cut in on the bottom is the entryway to the front door, the top of which is about 3 to 4 feet lower down.

This fascinating home construction information turns out to be more relevant than you might think.  When I went in at about midnight to see Julius, he went rocketing out the door past me down the upstairs hall.  This wasn’t supposed to happen, since I had been too sick to kitten-proof that railing. I don’t know if I could have grabbed him healthy, but as it was he made a bee-line for that railing and at once did a spin around one of the posts. On the way back in, his back feet slipped off, and for a moment he held on with the front paws… and then he fell down onto the tile floor below.

If there is a good time for a pet emergency, after midnight on a Sunday morning isn’t it, and I wasn’t really good condition myself, what with the coronary I was suffering at the moment on top of everything else.

I made it downstairs in record time and he was not moving where he fell, but he was standing up.  I scooped him up and he was awake – shocked more than stunned.  I felt all his bones pretty carefully looking for anything that seemed to hurt him, but he was unhurt.  His fluff must have acted like a parachute to keep him from falling too fast.

 This shot is from the next day when the light was a little better.  He’s so little that his stripes can smoosh together to make him look almost all black or show the tabbyness depending on the angle.  I know he was less than a pound at his first vet checkup the subsequent week.

While he was a kitten, he have that railing a wide berth.  Every so often these days he will actually go up onto the railing and walk up and down, meowing loudly so I can be sure and look up and see that he is risking another fall.


About Oldcat

Engineer with Cats
This entry was posted in Cats, Gustavus Adolphus, Julius Caesar and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Flashback – The Bigger They Are…

  1. minlit says:

    Toko did something very similar on her second day here. She was a very frail looking 12 weeks old at the time. Chasing a ping pong ball down the hall and right through the bannisters. My heart stopped. However, like all good fallen cats, she was just shaken, not stirred.


  2. kimkiminy says:

    Poor bitty fell down and went BOOM! Glad he wasn’t hurt. They’re so resilient when they’re young.


  3. littlemiao says:

    what a teeny little floof-ball! Lucky he came with a built-in parachute and extra floof for a cushiony landing.

    I know that cats are supposed to be experts at landing on their feet. When Chun takes a tumble from the kitty tree (which happens too often since he has no front claws), often times he lands on his rump.


    • Oldcat says:

      I thought it was an interesting synchronicity how I posted that story about a kitten escaping the safe room and just after I saw your post on Sprocket escaping his safe room.

      Cats can flip pretty quickly if they are ready for it and level. As a kid we did a little testing with a tolerant cat on a mattress and found he could get most of the way around in a foot or so – but if you aren’t ready it would be longer, and if you are falling vertically bottom first I’m not sure the right side up instincts help out all that much!

      Poor Chun needs some velcro gloves to help out.


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