(First Published on Tenerife Tattle)

Chokdi Settling In
Chokdi Settling In

Okay, we all know that there are cat people and there are dog people and when it comes to their favourite four legged friend never the twain shall meet. But there are those who love both – the cog or the dat people depending on which kind of furry friend was first in their household.

Much as I love dogs, I have always had cats. Even my very first feline friend gave birth to her kits in my bed when I was only three years old.

I arrived in Tenerife in 2000 from Thailand already kitted out (boom boom) with two furry friends that I brought with me. The venerable Boodle (originally Kitten Caboodle) who lived to a ripe old 22 years and Chokdi, whose name meant Lucky in Thai, but who was one of the unluckiest creatures I have ever come across.

Chokdi and her littermates had been thrown from a three storey window on to the roof of the outside cludgie of my Bangkok local, ‘Cheap Charlie’s’. Chokdi was perhaps the least appealing because no one had wanted her and while all the others had been spirited away by CC regulars, Chokdi was left in a cardboard box behind the bar. I took the little scrap home.

In the first week it turned out that she had in-turned eyelashes (ouch!) and a fracture in a back leg – not that it seemed to slow her down any. She got stuck behind the oven and stranded mewling at the top of the curtains on a regular basis. At first very scared and nervous, over time she became a loud and bossy family member with a short, bright tortoiseshell coat and long legs.

Cat with Skin Disease
Chokdi Getting Better

When we went on holiday, the cats went into the care of a local vet. Apart from being mightily pee’d off with us for leaving her there, Boods was fine, Fergus just as fat and contented but poor Chokdi had been struck by a dreadful flesh-eating type disease. Her beautiful soft fur was peeling off in long, raw tatters, her ears had begun to disintegrate and she was covered in gentian violet. Had we been much longer the vet would have put Chokdi down.

At home with us she recovered slowly although it took a long time and her ears never looked right again.

Cat and Puppy
Just Chilling Out

The two cats settled into Tenerife very quickly and neither were phased by the addition of a puppy boxer a couple of months later. Everything was great for a year or so until the night Chokdi picked up poison outside. She went into convulsion and died in pain shortly after. My poor soi baby had been through a lot in her short life but she had known love, a full belly and a warm bed which is more than many get in this life so maybe she wasn’t so unlucky after all.