Siddharth can’t stand locked doors and insists on opening them all by jumping on the door knob. Anupam demands that you play with him. Bindu loves going cockroach hunting in cupboards. Devi likes to roll dice when the kids play.
And the others, when they hear one, two, three – fetch! they race for the paper balls that their humans toss for them!
It began with Shimmer and Figaro. Now, there’s Siddharth, Anupam, Swaraj, Eva, Andre, Rafael, Vidya, Neeti, Devi, Krishna, Divya, Bindu and Tiger. All cats, they are a very important part of Anjali and Aditya Mehta and their maasi Ritu Bharadwaj’s family.
Chattering nineteen to the dozen, Anjali and Aditya tell me excitedly. that its time for their brood to snack. And that I must go to see them all.
Guided to the balcony, there’s a confusion of colours and tails sitting, standing and staring at me. Cooing over the lot, the little ones pick each cat and introduce me.
While I figure out who Vidya is and who is Andre, I am told Anupam is sleeping inside and that Rafael is behind me. On top of the cupboard is Swaraj. And then the children and the cats show us why playing together is fun.
Laughing, jumping, they chase broomsticks, climb onto a stool and run around pots. It is just another afternoon in a cats life 🙂
Shimmer and Figaro:
The cats came to Ritu via Shimmer, who Anjali found as a beautiful kitten in the society garden in November 2016.
“A month before Shimmer came home, our neighbours had found and adopted Figaro, a male cat. In no time the two became friends. Though Figaro was not the father to Shimmers first litter, he stepped in as the perfect nanny. Shimmer would leave them in his care and go out,” remembers Ritu, who is founder of a virtual reality technology company.
And it became a ritual. As the lot grew up,
Shimmer and Figaro were friends and parents to them. The two adults were inseparable and the humans enjoyed watching their bond grow from strength to strength.
One day, Figaro just disappeared. Exactly a month later, Shimmer passed away in an accident.
“Just like they came to us a month apart, they went away a month apart too. We know there is a connection,” sighs Ritu of her very dear cat.
Now, Shimmer’s daughter, Eva, has delivered a litter of which two look uncannily like Figaro and Shimmer. “We are going to keep them,” smile Anjali and Aditya.
And we know Shimmer and Figaro live on in their hearts and their home.
Ritu’s Tips To Keep Your Cats indoor And Happy
Keep their litter clean. That keeps them happy and the house doesnt smell.
Marking by the males is the only problem so you keep cleaning!
Give them good food, toys and love.
Cats like to be engaged. They like to groom themselves and to play.
They love it when you listen to them. And they like to listen to you too!
They take their guard duty seriously and will stare at guests.
Break up fights with a loud noise around them not by hitting them.
Keep them indoors because the outdoors aren’t safe.
Learn to be happy from cats.
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