Monday, July 27, 2009

Love 'Em and Love 'Em Apollo

Of our five (original) Greeks, we were initially told that Apollo was the scared one of the group. This has turned out to be not entirely true as Hera has definitely taken the title of the one who is the least friendly. But, we've worked harder with Apollo than Hera; probably because we had a lot more energy at first than we do now (almost 2 months after getting them). You might recall Apollo spent several days in solitary confinement while we (mostly me) attempted to get him to stop relying overly much on his siblings to interact with the humans (us).
When Apollo was in lock up, he was extremely sweet, loving, cuddly and NEEDY. Pretty much the moment we let him out, though, he reverted back to skittering away from us when approached. At the Thons he's fairly friendly (while Hera cowers in a corner of the cage) but, then again, he's sort of a captive audience.
Over the weeks, he HAS gotten better; meaning, he doesn't run away as fast and sometimes he doesn't run away at all (especially if he thinks food may be involved!)
While we were in NY, one of the other foster volunteers took both Apollo and Hera for about a week. Because of his situation (a lot of other foster cats), he kept them in a bathroom. Well, you can imagine how loving both of them were after a day or so. When he returned them to me last week he said, "They are such sweet little love bugs!" Uh huh.
After he left, I put the carrier containing them on the table so I could look at them. Both of them were near the front, curious; and Apollo was purring and obviously wanted to be petted. I gave him a little feel through the wire and then opened the door and let them out.
About two seconds later, both of them ran away from me like they'd never seen me before and thus ensued a bunch of pissing and moaning and hissing and spitting from three of ours who did not appear to be in the least bit happy to see Apollo and Hera again (Athena was the only one who didn't seem to care but we've discovered she has a very sweet and easy going temperament).
In my heart I am sure that once Apollo and Hera get to their forever homes, they'll be fine after a few days; I think animals have an instinct about being "home" (take Ares and Athena, for example; they seemed to know before we did that they'd come home).
Now, here is the reason for the title to this entry!
Saturday night, Mr. B fell asleep relatively early (10:30). I wasn't tired yet, so, I spent an hour on email/Facebook and then went upstairs to read. A few minutes after I got settled, Pete jumped up on the bed, followed by his little star-struck love slave Athena. I absent mindedly petted both of them as I read my book. Although Pete does not purr loudly, he has a low, comforting rumble while Athena has a very loud motor for such a tiny little thing. I was enjoying their contended sounds when I heard a loud purr intercepted every few seconds with a little squeaky meow. I glanced up from my book to see that Apollo had joined the party! And, to further my amazement, he walked over to me, climbed up on my chest and started to beg to be petted (which I happily obliged).
In the middle of the night, at least twice, he jumped up onto the bed and cuddled up next to me (recognizable by his little squeaky meow; he's the only one that does this). "Wow", I thought to myself, "maybe he's FINALLY turned the corner!" I was so jazzed!
The next morning as I was making the bed, I saw him sitting over by the dresser. I started to walk over to him...and...he darted away. I was a bit crestfallen and confused. He kept this up pretty much all day (other than when he wanted fed, then he was pretty darn friendly again).
This got me to thinking how his behavior and my reaction to it reminded me of getting special attention from a cute boy (like at a dance or something) only to be jilted the next day; shunned, ignored, whatever. You're heartbroken, then, something happens and the boy pays attention to you again. Etc. Well, Love 'Em and Leave 'Em Apollo was back at sucking up to me last night.
All jest aside, I think the issue is that Apollo and Hera, more so than the others, don't really care for humans towering over them (unless the tower is bringing yummy food). Obviously, when I'm prone (flat on my back, not much of a threat), they feel more comfortable; like I am on their level and there is little danger that I'll attack them.
So, Apollo is definitely making more strides than Hera (he's been friendlier today than I've ever seen him) but even Hera is coming around as I found HER next to me on the bed when I woke up this morning!
Two humans, one canine and six felines on one king-sized bed. Can you imagine? It's something else.
Mrs. B


Analee said...

lol, the whole time i was reading this, i was thinking to myself "i don't know how she tells them apart!"

they all look alike still in the pictures! i know in person they are different, i guess we still just need to meet them. sorry about saturday. we just had so much to do, and i wasn't sure how we were gonna do it all. we finally did, though.


Mrs. B said...

The older they get, the easier they are to tell them apart. It helps, too, that Zeus/Charlie is gone (the other grey/silver tabby).

They have distinct personalities, too; so, since we know them so well now, that helps.

Can you believe we've had them almost TWO MONTHS?

Hopefully, we can get together soon! And BEFORE Kendal's b-day party :-)