Chester and Vikter show that puppy love can’t hold a candle to their kitty love.
Vikter, a rescued street cat, first came to me as a house guest while his previous mommy went on a trip to visit her family. My female cat Chester (yes, I picked the name before I picked the cat) had been an “only child” for six years, and I was unsure of how she would react to an intruder on her turf.
To my relief Chessie gave Vikter a few inspection sniffs, but refrained from hissing, swatting or raising her hackles. She did, however, promptly eat his food and poop in his litter box, two acts of dominance that went largely unnoticed by our guest.
That first night was filled with investigative chirping sounds as Vikter explored every inch of my apartment. Who knew there could be eight-hours worth of interesting smells, nooks and crannies in a junior one bedroom? Despite the nuisance of being kept up all night, I was smitten and extended an open invitation to Vikter’s mom – He could come stay with me any time.
Judging by his looks and personality, Vikter is a Turkish Van mix. It turns out the quirks of the Turkish Van are slightly annoying in a one bedroom, but outright insufferable in a studio apartment, especially when the inhabitant of said studio happens to work an inconsistent schedule of night shifts and doubles. Vikter was not content to let his first mommy come home at 3am and slip into bed without making a fair amount of noise in an effort to solicit petting and chin scratches.
For those unfamiliar with the breed, Turkish Vans are very dog-like. They want to know where there humans are at all times, demand constant stimulation, and never hesitate to vocalize their questions, concerns and criticisms. Although she loved him (and still does) Vikter’s first mommy was finding life with a Turkish Van to be more of a challenge than she bargained for. After another visit at my place it was decided that Vikter would stay with me permanently.
To my delight Chester and Vikter soon developed an impenetrable bond. Almost every morning Vikter will cry for food, only to step aside and let Chester eat first. They regularly approach one-another in the hopes of receiving a tongue-bath and snuggle. They fight, as do all siblings, but more often than not they can be found spooning or curled into each other in a furry ying-yang. Sometimes they wrap their arms around each other and sleep face-to-face, and other times one will serve as a pillow to the other. If not physically touching, they are almost always in close proximity.
Images c. Jason Kanellis and Janine Fleri