The Chronicles of Mingo

Reintegration, Or, Some Of Us Are Not Happy

I knew, I KNEW, reintegrating Mingo back into the household would be difficult. Integrating him as a kitten was fraught and he’s not a kitten anymore. His personality is completely unchanged by almost two years growth and two years away: he’s dominant, stubborn, persistent, and he does not share.

After Ming disappeared from the yard I spent days beating myself up for letting him out of the house. I still think it was the wrong decision, obviously, but now I have a little more sympathy for past-me.

On the bright side, no one is actually bleeding.

Kevin-the-contractor is building the catio. It’s going to be lovely; unfortunately (there’s that word again) it is not finished. He didn’t show up yesterday but he’d better come today and finish the job or else he’s going to make history as the first Midnight Contractor of Boulder Creek. Because the pressure of too many cats in a very small house is overwhelming. I speak as The Overwhelmed.

Before I let Mingo out of quarantine I put pheromone collars on him and Squeaky. I thought if they smelled alike they’d be less inclined to kill each other. I did not put one on Sophie because I don’t have six arms. I also plugged in Feliway dispensers. It’s been years since I’ve had to use the dispensers. I mention this in my own defense because there’s no kind way to say this: I plugged them in upside down.

Yesterday I discovered a big bald patch on Squeaky’s neck under the collar. I instantly removed the collar, and I took off Ming’s for good measure. I cleaned up the oily mess from the Feliway dispensers, and removed those also. Have I mentioned I’ve changed the cat litter for another type entirely?

Cats hate change. So I’d removed the calming elements and made major changes. This would go well. WHAT WAS I THINKING?

This morning Squeaky woke me at 5 am. I fed Mingo and locked him in the back room, then fed Sophie and gave meds to Squeaky and fed him. I staggered back to bed and crawled out at 8 am. It was obvious I had to clean the litter boxes and while I doing Ming’s  Squeaky marched behind it and peed on the floor and against the wall. Right in front of me.

And they say cats can’t talk.

Okay, let’s back things up. I’ll get more Feliway and plug it in right side up. Duh. I’m not sure about the collar issue; I’ll talk to the vet. And I’ll do an old litter/new litter combo for a while.

Back, way back in the dim past when Kevin ripped out all the old carpet and put in the tile flooring, I had him seal the baseboards. He thought I was nuts, but ah ha ha I was right.

And that catio better get finished today, Kevin.



Mary Holland

Mary Holland writes alternative-world fantasy for grown-ups. Her books include Matcher Rules, The Bone Road, and The Dog of Pel. She lives in the Santa Cruz Mountains with three cats and an ever-changing assortment of wildlife.

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