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The Pet Shop: Life after Ariel | Blog: The Pet Shop

Janice Carmac

A few months ago I wrote about my 15-year-old cat, Ariel, a beautiful tuxedo kitty, dying.

I still look for her each morning and miss her each evening, the time when she would often sit closely beside me while I read or watched television. She was the cat who accompanied me on my motherhood journey and cuddled with my children when I was busy.

Peanut, our calico, has struggled as well. She meows more, needs more petting, more human interaction. Though Ariel never developed any affection for Peanut, Peanut seems to feel her absence.

In time, we will get another cat.

And while Ariel was generally the perfect cat, she did have a few flaws, chiefly that she shed her fur terribly and she was resistant to sleeping in any sort of cat bed that would contain the mess.

Peanut does many of the things that explain why some people don’t like cats. She bangs on the door when she is ready to enter or exit and begs at the supper table. She climbs on motor vehicles and sees any open door as an invitation to explore. Occasionally I hear a soft thump on the kitchen floor letting me know that she has been examining the countertops.

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But she has one redeeming feature.

She will sleep in her cat bed.

At least she would until Ariel died. Suddenly she was snoozing on the big couch on the spots that Ariel favored. I tried moving her cat bed that is positioned on the loveseat to the big couch but she would sleep beside it.

This was alarming because our couches were quite old and stained with an assortment of diet soda, coffee, chocolate milk, chip crumbs, cat hairs and so forth. It’s awful to say, but I had been waiting until Ariel died to replace the furniture.

And now Peanut was continuing the shed-fur-everywhere trend.

My husband suggested that I relocate her cat bed that stays in the garage onto the big couch. Any time the garage door opens, Peanut makes a run for it. I think she likes the quiet.

For a few days Peanut ignored it. And then one day she gingerly explored the bed and snuggled for a nap.

A few days later I was able to move it to the loveseat where we would prefer for her to sit. And glory be, that is where she naps.

I put our old couches for sale on Craig’s List and social media but there were no takers. I then changed it to free but heard nothing.

So I arranged for a local waste management and junk removal company to swing by for $95.

And then I got a message on the NextDoor app from a neighbor who wanted the free couchs.

Toys, pens, popcorn and other detritus floated in the air as the furniture was moved onto the recipient’s trailer.

“First Ariel is gone and now the couches,” said my 16-year-old daughter, grief in her voice.


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