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The Story of Rygel XVII

Posted by melagee on July 25, 2009

The first time I met Rygel was about five or six years ago.  A coworker of my roommate at the time brought him over in a small green carrying case so that we could watch him for a couple of weeks while she was away.  He was an average looking tuxedo cat, full bodied, smooth fur, nothing very distinctive.  He was terrified when he finally stepped out of the case and he ran and hid in the bathroom for about a day or so.

rygel1My roommate and I, loving cats and not knowing how to take No for an answer, proceeded to pester the cat by petting, cooing, and trying to play with him.  We would not leave him alone.  We also quickly decided that his current name (Filio) was boring and uncatlike, and decided to name him after a character from our favourite science-fiction show, Farscape. He became Rygel XVII.

Over the next few weeks we relentlessly stalked Rygel and forced him to accept the frequent cuddles and the odd bits of string and catnip that we would throw at him.  It was obvious that he was a cat who wasn’t used to so much attention, and he seemed quite put out at first.  By the time his owner came back to get him, though, he was completely invested in this new way of life.  Apparently no one had previously told him that cats rule the kingdom, and if they want affection or food or the warm spot on the sofa – they get it!

Within a week of Rygel (now back to being boring old Filio) being home with his owner, my roommate was getting complaints that he was like an entirely different cat.  My roomie and I were like affection peddlers, and Rygel was hooked.  I don’t think his owner really liked the changes in her cat, but ultimately it wouldn’t matter what she liked.

A year or so later my (now ex) roommate told me that Rygel’s owner had to give him up, and I somewhat reluctantly agreed to take him in.  I was hesitant because I really crave independence and even a pet can feel like a ball and chain sometimes.  But I had cared for this cat and helped teaching him how to be (I think) a better kitty, and I couldn’t just let him go to a shelter.  He was about two years old at this time.

rygel2

Oookay, buddy, it might be time for boxhab.

Of course agreeing to adopt Rygel, who came back to me just as I remembered him, was one of the wisest decisions I’ve ever made.  I adore my baby.  He has so much more personality than he did when he came to visit us several years ago.  He likes to play with string, or hump his boyfriend; he rolls around and exposes his belly for pets; he walks with poor balance on people’s delicate bits; andhe does this awesomely adorable thing where he curls up in my arms when I’m in bed, like it’s the best place in the world for him to be.  I completely and utterly love this cat, and I don’t know what I’d do without him.

Now if I could just get him to stop peeing on my bed.

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