Gabriel in Profile (photo) plus living a lot with a cat

When you’re retired you can live a lot with your cat. I can spend hours close to him. I believe you can achieve a relationship with your cat which takes you to the next level and goes beyond the normal sort of relationship that a person has with their domestic cat companion.

I’m not saying that retired people always have this connection but if you like cats and if you are at home a lot you can spend many hours with your cat companion which allows a “special relationship” to develop. There are dangers in this. Perhaps your car learns to only relate to you and sees every other person who visits the place as alien and dangerous. This is not true socialization.

In addition, if you have a special bond and a close relationship with your cat, it can be very hard to leave it behind. A person can become possessive or obsessive! However, a very close relationship with a cat companion brings the kind of benefits and delights that people who don’t like cats could never fathom. It is totally beyond the comprehension of people who don’t like cats but it is beautiful and very tender.

It is a relationship in which the human communicates with the cat without any words being spoken. There is an intimate understanding which is communicated fluidly and immediately. Words aren’t required. It is communication through behavior and actions. These are stronger than words. Words are easy to create. Actions are an expression of words. They are a demonstration of commitment. Cats understand actions.

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Useful tag. Click to see the articles: Cat behavior

39 thoughts on “Gabriel in Profile (photo) plus living a lot with a cat”

  1. Oh thank you . . . . thank you so much Michael <3

    Wonderful easy words to explain the relationship of a companion pet. and look at that small tiger GABRIEL, My lord he is becoming more and more beautiful than ever. I love him and thanks again for sharing, will wait for more and more and will never get bore ever 😉 <3 <3 <3 God bless you both, ameen <3

      1. I am donating a small sum of amount to the local poor Christians, I mean Rs. 100 per head. And my wife was born on 25th of December, so I am gonna celebrate her birthday with a dance with her at home. 😉

        And I am gonna pray for myself and entire world, cry for JESUS to come back and help the humanity which is under threat by the cruael human beings like JEWS and other forcing states plus TALIBANS. 🙁

        What shall I do more Michael????

          1. *****************************************************************
            ********Do you still celebrate Christmas like Christians?********

            Not like Christians and I even not celebrate our 2 grand festivals of EID like today’s Moslems.

            I do much coverage to donate on these days and give to the poor as they need to be HAPPY on this occasion. So, they are the priority.

            ********Some Muslims hate Christians and Christianity.********

            Yes, they do. And though in Pakistan, we have Christians in minority but people do not actually hate them but avoid them like in the west western people avoid foreigners from MOSLEM countries.



            I know there is a gap between different religions but as I told you before in my writings that I am an orthodox so there is no border but only a thin line between us and them. They are most near to us as our prophet SAW has described it clearly and the companions have also migrated to the Christians territory instead of any Arab before MEDINA. JESUS is mine, and that’s all what I know and my favorite prophet is MOSES as I have described it several times on my facebook also. I love to dress up like MOSES and I do.


            <3 <3 <3 What are you doing on Xmas Michael??? Come to me and we can make some food, cooking and both can have CAT DANCE 😉

  2. A beautiful photo Michael and i understand your relationship with your cat as i too have the same type of relationship with my cats although much younger and far from a retirement age.I face a severe handicap during my travels as i have to leave the cats at home and thankfully my caretaker does take good care of them.I lost my 22 year old parakeet “Mittoo” during a tour of North East India which devastated me emotionally . People might call us eccentrics for having such a emotional attachment to our pets but then i too find it difficult to understand certain people !

  3. “Growing like a weed” reminds me of when I stayed in Canada many years ago and I heard “scarce as hens teeth”, never forgotten it. I think this special relationship comes from having a house cat, you know everything about your cat, in 10 years I never saw my cat angry..never had his back up, never a Hiss, never a paw slap. He was socialized o.k , he liked meeting people who came to the house. I was a dog person before but after him the relationship was so much more than being with a Dog, I felt privileged that he showed me so much affection. Being chosen and loved by a cat is so special. On a different tack…how about some cool Christmas cat pictures from everyone…you know…Gabriel in the Christmas Tree, Gabriel in the Turkey that sort of thing.

    1. Nice idea about cats and Christmas trees. Personally that is a massive challenge for me because I don’t really celebrate Christmas 😉 . Christmas trees are as “scarce as hens teeth” chez moi!

      Sorry about that. It must be disappointing to read that.

      However, we could have a little fun competition. What about “Cats at Christmas”.

  4. With a site named “pictures-of-cats” it seems only “proper” to post pic(s) of my two cats…sorry that it comes with a little auto-biography… Both are Manx rescues. Lucy is a 5 y/o white/black male and with a severe aversion to most anyone…even myself. My wife is the only one that can get close to him. We “adopted” him when he was one year old, or so we were told, actual age unknown. He came from what we believe/know was a very bad cat mill. Even when Lucy shredded my arm the first time I tried to hold him, my wife and I decided that we had an obligation to take him out of that place, even if he NEVER comes around to me. It has been several years now, and he still thinks I am chasing him around the house when I walk from room to room and he gets scared. Progress is slow to say the least…but its better than the alternative. Second is Squishy, another Manx rescue that we got when he was just weeks old from a different “breeder” with equally unacceptable conditions. He was being kept in an abandoned trailer with a full grown rottweiler, they got along just fine, but obviously the cat was separated way too early from his mother. When we got him he had worms, ear mites, and was severely undernourished: we did not expect to survive. Well, ten years later that little “Squishy” kitty is around 20lbs of “mostly muscle” and up until recently as healthy as can be. He is on the upswing from some constipation that had us worried about kidney failure. Still monitoring food and water intake. Not pictured is “Stinkerbelle”, originally “Tinkerbelle”, but even she seemed to like her new name more….:). She was an “abused” breeding Siamese that we adopted after she was purchased by an unwitting breeder who had bought her not knowing the health issues that would prevent her from safely have more litters, so we got her as a pet instead. Unfortunately, she finally succumb to complications from kidney failure after MUCH work on my part as I was in school at the time and home alot. From “hydration” injections to pills, we did it all, and we did get another year out of her short life, about 6 years…she didnt seem to mind the injections, but they were pretty tough on us…my wife couldnt do it, so I did. She in fact became VERY close to me as I nursed her back from the brink. It still saddens me to know that the “industry” was responsible. We also had “Caliope” who was my wife’s cat that ate the contaminated cat food that came out several years ago and eventually paid the ultimate price due to both the poisoning and incompetent veterinarians. I have had many more cats throughout my life. I was born into a family with two Siamese and a Burmese, many, many, MANY, years ago…My mother bred one litter of Tonkinese, before making the original three all pets. She sold all the Tonks, much to my dismay(though I had yet to be born…lol), and four cats probably would of been a bit too much with ME on the way too….lol.

    We also have a canine rescue, that I must mention simply because of the absurdity of his parentage. “Early” is a Gerhuahua….yep German Shepard and Chihuahua, at least that what we are told…we thought we were getting a miniature GS, but got a giant Chihuahua instead…lol…still love him to death. He is doing fine now, but out of his whole litter(11) only two others also survived. Anyway, enough about dogs…:)…this isnt “pictures-of-dogs”….;).

    So here is Squishy and Lucy both are “stumpies”…I do not believe either to be pure bred, but that doesnt really matter to me. Yes both are full grown, just very different sizes. Squishy definitely exhibits “canine” qualities common with Manx. and follows me around the house most of the time, always interested in what I am doing(or waiting for a treat…;)). Typical American “couch potato” cats I suppose….:), but they undoubtedly an intricate part of our “family”…. for the record…I have never had a cat declawed, and never will: additionally all of my cats are indoor only, for many reasons, but mainly safety.

    1. Loved your story. You are animal lovers. We understand each other. Squishy looks enormous. A mountain of a domestic cat.

      I think you have both shown a lot patience and tenderness. It is a bit of a shame that Lucy hasn’t developed slightly more domesticated traits. Those early years are so important and I expect Gabriel to be somewhat fearful of people all his life but I am working on it. It is hard to play catchup with respect to socialization.

      At one time “pictures of cats” were big but times have changed and so has the site. Things evolve. The site is now about excellent pictures, yes, but also cat welfare.

      1. A page would be great, I kinda thought that is what I was doing from the main page, but it posted here for some reason. IDK.

        Yeah, problem with Squishy is that he thinks he is still that little kitten and jumps on unsuspecting people(sitting or laying down), even myself, and its like getting punched in the gut…or other “area(s)”, if you are so unfortunate. Does have claws, but never uses them on people or anything, even “smacking” the dog with no claws, just paw, the first day he came home. Yes Squishy is the “Alpha Pet”, trumping the 50lb dog with sheer presence. Squishy has slid off me and taken the fall instead of digging in more than once. If he would of “dug in” with his claws, it would be a trip to the Emergency room for sure. Properly raised cats known when and how to use their claws. At least in my experience…

        Lucy, yep, those early times are critical. It like there is a little tape recorder up there replaying loops of whatever happened to him before we got him. I believe that is why Squishy and I are so close…we got him sooo young. He is VERY clingy and jealous of the others pets.

        Better to evolve….than the alternative….

  5. Michael, I just came upon your blog and have been riveted by your relationship with Gabriel.

    I adopted a cat that had been trapped, described as “scared and starving.” He picked me—he lay on my lap and purred and drooled as I petted him—but started complaining on the trip home. I confined him to the bathroom, where he stayed in the tub and hissed at me. He escaped from the bathroom after three days and disappeared under the bed for four and a half months (!). He would come out at night and play, pulling the laces out of my boots.

    I don’t know whether he was feral or perhaps had been kept in a basement to control mice. He may have had a problem with a man, because when he got home he saw my husband; was that a factor? I don’t know. For those four and a half months, the cat avoided us. (I called the woman from whom I got him, and she said to put his food in a cage and make it clear that he would have to put up with my touching him in order to eat, but my husband wouldn’t hear of it, so the situation just dragged on.) (Is it a coincidence that around the four-month mark my division closed and we were all laid off and I in effect retired? So many possible factors.)

    Finally, my husband walked into the bathroom. The cat was in the tub, clawing out the grout between the tiles. He looked at my husband, then turned back to the grout. I went into the bathroom and stroked him. Despite himself, he purred.

    That evening, he came out of the bathroom, stopped and looked at me, and wailed, clearly in conflict. The next day, he was approachable.

    Still, he would not let me pick him up. (Now I’ve come to the point of this long comment.) I read a book about cats by Michael Fox, in which he said it was important for a cat to accept restraint because that is how the cat learns self-restraint. I had to act, for the cat’s psychological well-being! I put on my knee-length leather jacket and my leather gloves and picked him up and held him in my arms. He squirmed and scratched and struggled; I tightened my grip. Finally he gave up, resigned. It was as if a switch had been thrown. Now we could pick him up. The point? I’m wondering if this would work for ferals.

    This was six years ago. We love our little guy.

    1. Hi gainny. Great comment. I enjoyed your story. You may be right about “accepting restraint” and it worked so that must support the idea. To me though it looks a bit like “breaking a horse” as opposed to the horse whisperer technique of using horse psychology to get the horse to accept the person.

      What I did was play a hell of a lot with Gabriel who behaved like your boy. I played for hours with him and while playing he forgot his fear of people and I touched him on his back. I did this over and over again and gradually he accepted my touch and came to me to lie on lap.

      Then over the next 4 weeks I have played more and encouraged him to be in physical contact with me. Now he is fine with being stroked etc.. He may flinch a bit sometimes when I touch him in situations that he is not familiar with but I’d say he is now socialised to me. He lies on me and on my shoulder all night. It is a very close relationship.

      I suppose the “throwing a switch technique” is possibly equally good. I prefer the slow, quiet, method which will always work and is perhaps safer. By safer I mean for the cat because it may be the case that the cat does not submit but rejects the forceful handling and becomes more alienated.

      Thanks again for visiting and commenting.

      1. Thank you for responding.

        I don’t know anything about horses, or breaking them or whispering to them. (My husband heard a radio program in which a horse trainer said he told the corralled horses that they could leave and be rounded up for horsemeat or stay and be trained. I don’t know what to think about that.)

        You’re lucky that Gabriel is so young, and therefore more likely to accept how you treat him as normal, just the way things are. My best beloved cat ever, a mackeral tabby, came to me as a stray kitten. He grew up to be limitlessly affectionate; there was no such thing as too much petting. When I went to bed, he would hop up and lie next to me, on his back, so I could rub his belly (the Siamese slept between my legs). When I took him to the local large veterinary hospital for urinary tract treatment, staff members came up to me to say how wonderful he was. He had a charming trick of staring me in the eyes while trying to sneak food off my plate. Best cat ever.

        The current cat was estimated to be a year old when trapped; he might have been younger, but definitely a cat, not a kitten. When he finally came out of hiding, I put him on a diet of no-grain wet and dry food (always out, lest he develop an eating disorder; he eats small amounts throughout the day), and he grew to be ten pounds, all lean muscle and sinew. He had been so small that his trapper named him Little Dude; now he’s more like Medium Dude, just a normal cat-size cat. He actually grew in length.

        I have read that fearfulness in cats is largely inherited from the father. My old cats were fearless and never passed up an opportunity to try to dash out the door. Little Dude shows no interest in going out and often hides when someone rings the doorbell. Heredity or early experience or both?

        I don’t force myself on him. I can’t cut his claws, so I get out of reach when he gets excited. He won’t let me brush him, even to save him from throwing up fur balls. He has trained me (very fastidious about the litter box). He’s not afraid of us anymore—we’re too clumsy and slow to be a threat. And he sleeps with me—all I ever wanted, really. I don’t think I broke his spirit.

        Cats are different from one another. Gabriel sounds like a fast learner.

  6. I totally understand what you mean Michael. With someone whose living alone now most of the time. I couldn’t imagine life without Cats. I do go out a few times in the week, but only for a few hours. I have had some problems with Jasmine though I hope that once I get some Cat spray as she has been clawing walls in various places. The house im in was made in 1940s so will have to get another Scratching Tree and some Spray to deter her from going. I have ordered a pediclaw which just trims its not declawing and I wanted to steer away from having her nails clipped as that sounded horrible. Ill see how she goes with the spray and Tree first mite not have to use the pediclaw. Apparently it doesn’t hurt them but I will see. Will Prob have to get some Putty to cover up the Stains on the wall. Gaberiel is beautiful and I think you should adopt him.

    1. Sorry to hear that Jasmine is damaging the walls. Of course cats don’t know they are walls! I think the solution you propose it correct. More cat scratchers and to trim her nails (which can be tricky because cats don’t like it). It is not uncommon for cats to scratch wallpaper and damage it. Perhaps a vertical scratching area where the damage is may help. What I mean is a board of wood (say 4 feet by 4 feet in size) on which is nailed some old carpet or something like it. This is then placed over the area of wall that is scratched. Jasmine should then scratch the homemade scratcher. Just a thought. I may be too fiddly to do this however.

      I will adopt Gabriel. We are too close now.

      1. Yea I’m so pleased you are going to adopt him. He’s such a lovely boy. Yea she seems to like Long and High Scratches. I think she misses a lot the Old Timber Had at home. The New place outside is a lot better there is a Paddock near by. Ill get a Cat scratches Tomorrow and some Cat Spray to deter her. I don’t think it will matter much, as this house is abit Old Built in 1940s, mum said its like the house she knew growing up. I was going to do you a College of Charlie but I don’t want to upset you would just be in Memory. I have left it long as I know how hard grieving can be.

  7. Got so engrossed by Gabriel that I forgot the rest of the subject matter.
    Time with cats….
    Ofcourse, nearly every minute of every day loving them, every breath talking/singing to them, every bit of energy seeing to their needs and desires.
    They know me and I know them. We are all, nearly, mind readers.

  8. God, what a photo!
    I wish I could snap like that.
    I would enlarge and hang it on a wall.
    Better yet, I might ask someone to paint a portrait from it.

  9. Gabriel is growing up so quickly. You’ve clearly developed a strong bond with him Michael. Are you going to be able to put him up for adoption or do you plan on keeping him?

      1. I thought that might happen. We could all see how smitten you were from the start;)

        It’s a lovely, warm feeling sharing a close bond with a special cat. You’re truly blessed.

        1. Yes I am smitten. I do feel the responsibility that goes with it and I do my best to discharge it properly. As I am raising him and trying to get him in state of mind where his life will be as enjoyable as possible it creates a closer bond than if I had adopted an adult cat.

  10. I think it is only natural to spend every waking moment you can with you loved ones, like your children and cats. I think the cats actually like to spend time with us. It is rewarding for both. He is growing like a weed!

  11. Michael, I am not retired, but other than working, 95% of my time is spent with my cats and my son. That’s the way I want it. I do have a special relationship with each one of my cats, and they adore my son and myself. Only a few of them will hide when I have company — mainly the ones who were rescued from feral — with the exception of one feral. My oldest brother who passed last year was special to my one feral (Leia). He was the only person (other than Tyler or I) she would “pester”. She adored my brother. After he passed, Leia really became doting on me. I truly think she knew my brother passed. Today, I really think when she “pesters” me, that she is trying to let me know that my brother is still with me and watching over us. And as I have mentioned to you before, I have ALWAYS considered the anipals to be “little temples of God”. I know He is with me at all times, but my kitties just reinforce that feeling 200 fold. I truly feel God’s presence with the kitties. I even talk with God about this. I am by no means a religious fanatic, but there is no doubt that God exists with my kitties. They provide His unconditional love and understanding at ALL times, and they are ALWAYS here for me no matter what I look like, smell like or whatever. They just want me to be here for them. And that is a promise I will ALWAYS keep to them and to God — I will always provide the best that I am able for them, and return their unconditional love. There is NO better feeling in the world for me. My kitties are my little toddlers who can’t speak correctly to me, and I will ALWAYS be there for them for their entire lives.

    1. Beautifully said. I have the same sort of feelings. They are very real. These days the best feelings I experience are when I am with Gabriel. And when I photograph him it is very pleasant.

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