Roy came to live with us on 7 Feb 2004. We lost him on 22 Feb 2014.
He was a sweet cat. He selected us at the shelter because he needed to be petted. He loved to have his cheeks stroked. When I would fold laundry on the bed, he would sit on the bed in front of me for attention. Made it hard to fold things. Also when I lay on the floor to do sit ups or push ups, he would quickly wander around and under me. Made it hard to exercise.
More than needing to be loved, he could not tolerate being stuck indoors. At first we would take him out on a leash, but he was not satisfied to be restricted, sometimes just sitting in one place. He tried to tunnel under the doors to the garage and to the deck until we came to see the wisdom of opening the doors.
When CJ came home from college and Jacob's Pillow, Roy bonded with her. In spring 2005, she considered moving to Wheaton to be closer to her job, but didn't because the landlady would not accept Roy. It was a sad day when she moved to New York.
He made us laugh. Chasing his tail was a favorite game.
He was clever. Although he could not ring our door bell when he wanted to come in, he figured out that he could get our attention by scratching at the screen on the window near the kitchen window.
He used up at least three of his nine lives while living with us. First, one morning in November 2004
CJ brought him downstairs, and said that he was drooling and his head was cocked to the right.
He had also vomited and was very listless.
Gail and I took him to an Emergency Pet Hospital on Route 40 west of Enchanted Forest.
They closed at 8 a.m., but gave him a brief inspection before they did,
finding nothing obviously wrong. We were worried he might have eaten something poisonous.
We took him to our normal vet after the office opened and left him for testing.
They could not figure out what was wrong and sent him home close to 7 that evening.
The next day he was acting more normally.
A second life was lost in June 2008 after Doug took Roy out on his leash. Roy ran off when Doug left him unattended to put something into the house. It was a Saturday. Doug posted fliers along Shaker and Cape Anne. We were afraid that his leash had trapped him or that he had been hit by a car, but on the following Wednesday, he came walking up from the direction of the Rallin's house. His harness and leash were missing. He had a huge welt under his neck and his voice seemed quieter. He was a little subdued that evening, but that did not dissuade him from wanting to get outside again.
His third life-threatening experience was in spring 2013. He was found to be suffering from hyperthyroidism and was given radioactive iodine treatment. We were so happy when our radiocat recovered and was sprier than before.
He would tuck us in at night. Sometimes he would sit on my chest with his nose nearly touching mine, while I stroked his back. We did not allow him in the bedroom while we slept so after he tucked us in, we had to get up and put him back in the hall. He always had a nice soft bed to go to, nonetheless.
Roy's voice was unique. His meow always sounded more like a growl.
In summer of 2012, he began imitating a banshee with yowls
in the basement at night.
Later he expanded this behavior to any place in the house any hour of the day.
Some things scared him, such as children, thunder and other things. In wee hours of May 9, 2004, a lightning bolt hit the side of our house, giving us quite a jolt. It gave Roy quite a jolt too. We found him in the basement, hiding his head under the bottom step. One day in November 2004, I was walking Roy on a leash in our backyard when a deer ran between our house and the one behind us. Roy bolted out of his harness and dashed away. I found him crouched on the front porch with his tail all bushed up. When I opened the door he quickly went in on his own. And in later years, whenever Doug and Lisa brought the kids over, Roy disappeared into the basement and would not be seen again until hours after they left.
One mystery about Roy that we will never solve is where did he grow up. He must have picked up his delight in being petted and his habits like chasing his tail somehow in a earlier life.
Roy is missed.