Introducing… er…

Cat in a bookcase.

This sweet thing is my new cat! I just adopted her yesterday from my vet (who manages a small no-kill shelter; if you’re in NYC and looking for a cat, BTW, let me know and I’ll refer you to him). This was one of the few photos I was able to snap of her before she disappeared into my closet and/or under my bed. She’ll settle in eventually.

My vet thinks she’s about 9 years old — which is good for both of us, since I prefer to have older cats who’ve settled out of their kittenish obnoxiousness, and since older cats tend to have a hard time finding new homes. She was abandoned at my vet’s office by some guy who dropped her off in a box, claimed he would return for her later, and never did. Someone spent a lot of money on her at one point; she’d already been spayed and (sigh) declawed. And she’s obviously been a housecat for some time; she’s perfectly housetrained, doesn’t jump onto things she shouldn’t, and loves people. I don’t understand how someone could have a cat like this and just… stop wanting her. But that’s why she’s with me, now.

I suspect she’s a Maine Coon. I don’t normally go for purebred animals — seems to me “mutt-cats” are healthier; witness NukuNuku’s 19-plus years — but she’s got the conformation and coloring, and she’s also painfully thin beneath her fur, which is something that happens to MCs when they get older, I’ve noticed. (Considering how much she ate yesterday, we might be able to remedy that somewhat.) She also has a remarkably tolerant temperament; when she’s not hiding, she’s super-friendly, and at the vet’s office they noted that she doesn’t mind being picked up and cuddled — also a common MC trait. (If you ever want to have a cat that’s good for toddlers/small children, get a Maine Coon; I’ve had lots of friends with kids who’ve sworn by the breed for that reason.) The vet could probably do a genetic test to confirm her breed, but I don’t care so won’t bother.

But I’ve got a dilemma: I’ve only ever inherited cats who’ve already been named. “Lindsay” was just a temporary name the vet techs gave her, since the schmuck who abandoned her her former owner didn’t tell anyone her real name. But since I associate “Lindsay” with “Lohan”… let’s just say I’m thinking about a change. She doesn’t feel like a “Lindsay” anyway. Suggestions welcome! (And no, they don’t all need to be elaborate anime-flavored constructions like “All Purpose Cultural Cat NukuNuku” — I didn’t name NukuNuku, although that name fit her to a T.)

So please welcome… uh, her!

43 thoughts on “Introducing… er…”

  1. Maine Coons can live a long time – I had one that made it to 19 years (outliving her sister’s half-MC kitten by a year). Hope you and she have a long and happy life together.

  2. She’s so lovely and ladylike! She doesn’t look quite big enough to be a Maine Coon, but she certainly has the face (and the way it sounds, the temperament) – but then it’s hard to get a gauge of her size from this photo. She blends into the shadows! :)

    She’s lovely, and I’m so glad you brought her home. It’s the older ones that need us the most, and though kittens are hilarious, they are a huge pain for a minimum of two years, and longer depending on the cat/breed.

    I shall call her Foofycat, until you figure out her name ;) Welcome, Foofycat!

  3. Eee, new kitty! She’s gorgeous!

    I see what you mean about her not being a Lindsday. She looks a bit like a Minx to me, or maybe a Chiara. Or a Tiora (my mother’s school motto was ad altiora, ‘to higher things’, and because a friend had a cat that liked sitting high up, she was nicknamed Tiora-puss, which ever after has struck me as being a very good cat name).

    Anyway, whatever you call her, she looks lovely :)

  4. She looks like a Susan to me…

    I recently lost my Angela of 16 years and adopted a rambunctious 2 year old male. I think you have the right idea with slightly older cats…

    Good luck with her, she looks like a sweetie!

  5. Congratulations! I’ve been staring at the cursor waiting for a suggestion to strike (Sekhmet? Fido? Larkin?) but it’s hard w/ out knowing the cat – I’m sure something apposite will occur to you soon!

  6. Wow, she’s a dead ringer for my cat!

    Does she love having company while she eats? Apparently that’s a Maine Coon thing (or part-Maine-Coon thing, since I don’t think my cat is pure of breed either).

    Mine’s name is Nina (although I usually call her by any of about 15 different nicknames). She was briefly named Fiona, but it didn’t quite fit, although I’m still fond of that one.

    My suggestion is to find the name of a town in Maine that sounds nice and name her after that – maybe she’s got some heritage there. Castine? Millinocket?

  7. Kitty! She’s beautiful. Actually, in that photograph, she looks almost like my cat Pokey — he was a tabby/mutt breed but looked very much like a MC, and was also super cuddley.

    I remember reading that cats respond better to names that end with ‘ee’ sounds, but as I’ve only ever had cats that happened to have names that end in -ey I can’t really say whether that’s true. But she looks like she ought to have a regal name of some sort.

  8. Such a sweet kitty! I agree that she looks a little small to be a full bred Maine Coon but she is awefully fluffy. I think she looks like a Jinxy.

  9. Such a pretty kitty! Her (probable) breed sounds so sweet and friendly.

    Ntombi? Means ‘great lady’ in Zulu.

  10. Hi. My name’s Nichole. I’m new here even though I’ve been a lurker for quite a while.

    Your new cat’s beautiful. Epiphany-Sue (Suzie for short) would be a great name.

    Thank you for all you do.

  11. I didn’t know that about Maine Coons, about getting skinnier when they get older. That totally fits with the cat we had growing up who we always suspected was at least part Maine Coon. He was such a _tiny_ thing as a kitten too!

  12. I just want to mention that cats can be loved and wanted and still be abandoned. Hello crappy economy :( Bothering to drop her off at the vet sounds to me more like someone who had run out of options than someone who had stopped caring, you know?

    Anyway, congratulations on your new roommate, as it were! She’s a cutie.

  13. Introduce her to your father and see if he sneezes. That’d settle whether she’s a Maine Coon or not, surely? (I always thought the breed was called Mancun from the way Tokyo J pronounced it.) That cat looks like a Verbena to me.

  14. Her fur looks so soft! How about Svila? It means silk in Serbian/Croatian/Bosnian/Montenegrin. It’s pronounced SVEE-la

  15. I’ve been wondering about the name NukuNuku–so it really does mean warmy comfy (I didn’t know about this anime.) If I’m to suggest some word a bit similar to NukuNuku… Perhaps MofuMofu? Fluffy-softy?

  16. She looks like a great cat, and bless you for being willing to adopt an older cat. So few people are willing to do that, knowing their time together will be that much shorter, but the older kitties can be so loving it makes up for it. May you have many happy years together.

    At least the person who dropped her off did it in a safe place. We had one gorgeous declawed white longhair who showed up on our doorstep after someone dumped him, probably in the nearby park.

  17. Eleanor Skinner

    What a beautiful cat!

    Maine Coon kitties are not alone in becoming very thin when old. Cats’ bodies adjust as the liver slows in efficiency. 9 seems a little young for this to me, but I’m not a vet. And anyway there’s tons of other possible reasons for her to be thin, including schmuck ex-owner.

  18. At nine, would she adapt to a new name easily? Perhaps make the new name similar to the old one. Perhaps Lindy? Lizzie? I’d be tempted to call her Linseed, as linseed oil is what makes oil paints so silky in texture and it smells so delicious.

  19. She looks very cuddly :)
    I’m not going to suggest a name, but simply enumerate the names of the various cats in my life since ever, in chronological order, for example sake. Be prepared.
    Koshka (“cat” in russian), Le chat (“cat” in French), Spartacus, Alia, Microburin, Miles, Paprika, Mika and Zubro.
    Koshka was my first ever cat, but when she died of a tumor, we adopted a stray female that had decided she was adopting us. For lack of inspiration, we named her “le chat” (and she did answer that, too), and she stayed with us a very very long time, though we never knew her exact age. She was very old when she died…
    Spartacus was born and named after my dad took me to see Spartacus (the Kubrick one), and Alia was born in an “everybody is reading Dune in this household” period.
    As for Microburin (, he was saved by my father from certain death (the litter had been thrown in the river apparently…), a few days after he was born. Everybody calls him Micro, which is very apt since he never grew up to a full adult cat size, although he is in good health.
    Miles is a consequence of naming cats after your favourite sf character ever, he was mine but he died by way of car a few years ago.
    Anyway, I said “simply”, but I’m writing a novel, here… Goes to show it’s difficult to talk about cat names without talking about the little beasts themselves…

    I hope inspiration comes to you in due time :)

  20. How about Amina? It has a sound which seems to fit how you describe her personality. It means “feel safe” according to Behind the Name, which seems oddly appropriate.

  21. It took us over a week to name the latest addition to our family. She’d accumulated 8 names in 3 languages before we settled on a variation of a joke made on the first day we met her. Perhaps if you gave it a little more time? Her personality might suggest something.

    Here are some possibilities:
    Aliyah, which means climber
    Kalika, rosebud (soft and sweet, as you say)
    anything that means beloved?

    Like you, we tend to adopt mutts–and have also gotten them from our vet. Ah, but a Maine Coon… that would be hard to resist. May you have a long and wonderful life together!

  22. Looks like my first reply may not have made it through:

    What about Mimsy? It sounds close enough to Lindsey in case she’s started to identify with that name — and has a genre connection (or two.)

  23. Aww. Sweet kitty.

    Hmmm. Well you’d have to determine her personality once she’s relaxed enough to get the perfect name. I usually hit up the baby name sites even though their meanings can be a little off.

    Does she have any distinguishing marks? One of my kittens had the Hebrew letter ‘Nun’ on his back. I thought it was the number 7 initially and called him Septimus. Now he’s Lorenzo, which is completely unrelated to the initial names.

    Jasmine is kind of cute for a cat.

    Any favorite characters, authors, or artists? Where did Maine Coons originate?

    Yeah. I put way too much thought into naming my pets. ^^; I have no life.

  24. Very cute! I don’t know why, but she looks like a Daisy to me. But you probably shouldn’t listen to me; our younger cat is called Marie-Conséquence. Yes, there’s a story behind it. No, we don’t use the full name every day, but she does respond to Concie.

  25. Floofy. Also, you can get small maine coons, whatever people are saying. I knew one that was pretty small and skinny under the floof and also know a HUGE one.

  26. Congrats! We adopted a 9 year old a year ago. We like naming cats after middle eastern & northern african royalty. Our grey tabby is named Ashur Banipal. She looks like a Cleopatra Selene – for the daughter of Cleopatra who was exiled to Rome or Fatima – for Fatima el-Sharif of Libya. Or if you want a nod to Maine you could call her Allagash (Allie).

  27. Maybe “Yoruichi” (Yoru?), even though this kitty is grey? You mentioned that you were a Bleach fan, hehe. *shrug*

  28. Every time I come here and read more about you (like how you took in your pretty kitty who looks so much like the little man I took in), I love you more.

    Don’t want this to sound stalky-ish or anything, but it freaks me out that I’ve yet to find any “likes” that we don’t have in common. Wish I’d known you all my life so we could be friends!

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