Location: Chapel Hill, NC
What makes Merle so mean?
He’s big, he’s black, and he’s bad. Thus far Merle, all 18 pounds of him, has bloodied up three cat sitters, terrorized numerous house guests and kicked more dog butt than any feline in the South.
Merle was a feral cat with a broken leg who wandered into my garden one day. He would stretch out on the rows of vegetables and watch me as I weeded. When I weeded too close to him–ZAP–he’d hiss and make me bleed. It took months before he would let anyone even touch him.
Later that year as hurricane Fran approached, I knew I had to get Merle out of the barn and into the house (Kitty Quaaludes from the Vet were the only answer). Well, he has refused to go outside ever since. He stalks the dogs and blocks the door so they can’t come in the house. He bites me when I leave for work. He insists on getting his treats before the dogs get theirs, but what I fear the most is going out of town and leaving him alone with a cat sitter. On three different occasions I’ve received frantic calls from friends who fell prey to Merle and his ugly tricks. The lady next door had to call her husband over to rescue her once because Merle had her trapped and wouldn’t let her out the door.
ETA 2007: Merle completed his tour here on earth yesterday and is now in the company of his big sister Twyla, somewhere up there where kitties and doggies go.
“I don’t want a cat,” I said. “I really don’t want a cat. Especially a mean one like that.” That’s what I said. That’s not how it all played out. I fell in love with the meanest and strangest cat I’d ever met. He SLOWLY evolved into the most loving, sweet kitty one can imagine. If only all cats could have his charm and attitude.
Photo submitted by: Sally Jo