Tuesday, 16 January 2007

Jaffa, the mouser.

From the first moment Jaffa came to stay, he has been a very independent cat. With his long legs and muscular body, he has the elegance of a thoroughbred horse. When we bend to stroke his head, he rises up to meet us on his hind legs, in the manner of a prancing horse. He really is a fine figure of a cat.

He has the silkiest of fur coats, pale green eyes, a little pattern of white down his nose and large white paws. He always purrs when stroked and when sitting in his chair, he purrs and winks at each of us. He prefers being stroked when he is on the ground or on top of the car, or on the table. Being lifted up to be stroked does not suit him.

The rafters in the outhouse are where he is often to be found looking for mice, or sitting for long periods on the stone-dyke wall at the back of the house vole-watching. An excellent hunter, we have seen Jaffa with various catches of voles, mice and shrews.

Each morning he starts the day by going for a walk before breakfast. Then he might have a taste of pond soup or a nibble of a grassy plant on the way back. Always a dainty eater, he never gobbles his food. If offered a titbit, he will sniff it or lick it, but mostly seems content with the cat food and what he catches on his hunting trips.

Looking at him now it’s hard to remember how frightened he was when he first came to stay. The hissing and scratching we saw initially, were defence mechanisms to tell us and other cats to stay back. Very quickly we saw that Jaffa was going to be a pacifist.

Vole catcher,
Mouser extraordinaire,
Gentleman Jaff
With the silky fur.
He’s a puzzle,
Dainty eater,
Friend of Rinks,
Orange fur,
Jaffa, purr, purr!

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