Meet Bella, AKA Mrs. Bossypants*. I have lived with many cats in my life. Bella is different. She is a Maine Coon. She is huge. She is bossy. She is beautiful. She has long hair, she keeps herself impeccably groomed. She loves attention and she purrs up a storm when she gets it. Once she decides what she wants she becomes Mrs. Bossypants until she gets it. This has been a characteristic since we got her. Actually, if I think back there may have been some hints…
Mrs. Bossypants was originally a breeding cat. Her career as a breeding cat was short-lived. At 11 months old she let the stud cat out, mated and had a litter. They tried to breed her after that and she was never able to have another litter. She was shown in some cat shows and she took 5th best cat at one show. Her original name was Tiera – short for ‘material girl.’ The breeder was quite young and clearly a Madonna fan.
Mrs. Bossypants has a long history of this personality trait. The people who owned the cattery had decided to adopt her out as ‘non-breeding’ because she had become cat aggressive. She was mean to all the cats and tried to prevent them from getting any attention. Apparently it had become so bad that they had to keep her separated from the other cats. It worked for Bella to come to our house as we had dogs and no other cats.
From day one, Bella was both beautiful and bitchy. She screamed at me every morning (and still does). If you talk back she tells you off. It is quite the hilarious routine unless you are me early in the morning. She is pretty much a one person cat. I am the person.
When Mrs. Bossypants wants attention she does not fool around. It is immediate and on her terms. Last night is a great example. She came into the living room and managed to get herself on to me. Now, that is all fine except for one thing. Nails. She has nails that look like talons and feel like little razors. The only person who has successfully clipped them is Debbie the dog groomer. I did not get time to cover my self with a 5-layered quilt before she was on me and kneading. Angelina rescued me by putting the quilt down and then we tried to get it into place before she did serious damage. Well, it didn’t work and we decided to cut her nails. Angelina tried to get her off me and Mrs. Bossypants drew blood. She then covered her head and did one paw. The noises that come out of that cat are otherworldly and scary! It took two of us to do the second paw. We didn’t bother with the back ones. Hopefully sitting with the cat will no longer require a chain-mail suit of armour.
Now, on to the topic of food. It is in this area where Mrs. Bossypants truly excels. If there are less than 17 pieces of kibble in her bowl. She will meow and then it will escalate to a meow-scream**. She learns new routines very easily. We have a housekeeper who comes with some regularity and Mrs. Bossypants has her trained to wash her food matt, fill her bowls and pet her. One day I decided to give her a treat of some wet food. I finished off the can the next day and voila we must give her wet food daily or she meow-screams.
I have finally realized that I am staff to a cat. There is no point in fighting it anymore. Mrs. Bossypants will always win.
*The etymology of Mrs. Bossypants is as follows: Mrs. because she is old and deserving of respect (and I would be afraid to call her anything else), Bossy – keep reading and it will all become apparent, Pants because she has lovely hair pantaloons on her back legs.
**For the dog people a meow-scream is similar to a bark-scream that some dogs have down to a fine art.