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Fluffy, the Remarkable Barn Cat

In the gallery you will see one oil painting of a cat. I must say that I have

painted many horses, several dogs, and very few cats. I definitely like cats

and I loved my cat named Inky that died several years ago. Painting them

is definitely something I should try more often, because I really did enjoy

painting this lovely cat named Fluffy.

This particular cat is one that lives in the barn on the farm. Not only is he a

beautiful seven year old cat with long silky hair, he is probably one of the

most intelligent cats that I have ever known. He really deserved to have his

portrait painted and after reading this blog I think you will agree. This

cleverness has allowed him to survive the barn life when so many of the

other cats have not. Many cats and kittens have come and gone over the

years in this particular barn but he has remained throughout. My feeling is

that he has figured out the arrangement at the barn and that is why he has

been able to endure it all.

When I say that he has figured out the system I mean that he is clever

enough to know all about the activity and the dangerous situations that take

place in and around this particular area. There are constant threats such as

tractors being pulled in and out of the barn, trucks traveling through the

barn lot, dangerous mowing and weed eating throughout the summer

months and horses that run and kick. Wagons loaded with bales of hay are

backed into and pulled out of the barn where he lives. Even though these

hay wagons provide a comfortable place to sleep and safety from intruders,

he’s intelligent enough to know that when the alfalfa is sold and the wagon

wheels start rolling he must leap off and sprint in the opposite direction.

Other cats have taken this one way hay ride and ended up in a completely

different location never to return to this barn called home.

From the entrance of his home he silently watches vehicles enter and exit

the barn lot. Fluffy knows the difference by the time of day whether it is

someone there to feed him breakfast or time for him to scurry up to the

highest bale at the top of the barn to seek protection. Always watching

from the hay at the top for whatever might enter the barn doors.

I’m sure he’s used this same defense when stops have been made at the

barn by some of the coyotes that frequent this area. We can always hear

the babies yelping for their mothers in the distance on warm summer

nights. These same mothers are out looking for dinner. When a cat

disappears from the barn, we are fairly sure that this has been the coyote’s

choice for an evening meal. However this particular cat has somehow not

been on the menu. This really shows his cleverness because so many

have not survived this dangerous part of barn life.

Not only does he watch for vehicles and coyotes but he is very much aware

of my Australian shepherd dog, Tucker. Tucker likes to police this area. He

sprints into the barn, dust flying, planning to terrorize, control, and herd

anything that might be moving. Nothing causes him more excitement than

to see all of the other cats hiss, panic, and run for cover flying in all

directions. This fuels Tucker’s engine. Remarkably this particular cat knows

how to control him. He doesn’t get excited, doesn’t hiss, and best of all, and

doesn’t run. He’s figured out that you can’t be chased if you don’t run! He

calmly struts down the center of the barn with his fluffy tail held high, lies

down, and rolls over to face Tucker. Well the confused dog doesn’t know

what to think. He is totally bewildered by this cat. All he can do is stand

and stare at him in amazement, wagging his entire backend, because he

has no tail to wag. This witty cat does not move until Tucker gives up and

sadly walks away.

So now you know why this incredible cat was in need of a portrait. Fluffy is

truly a remarkable feline. It’s not often that you find an outside pet that can

survive so many dangerous situations. My hope is that he will continue to

enjoy his home in the barn for many more years to come. He certainly has

unbelievable survival skills, and he has certainly been a joy to watch and

so much fun to paint!

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