Monday, March 22, 2010
Taylor, and update on Murray
Just a short while back, I wrote about Murray, who initially was terrified after being initially in our window enclosures, hiding in a box in there behind the litter box. With TTouch every day and extra TLC from other volunteers, he has really come out of his shell and he has such a sense of humor too, often rolling over on his back and looking at you from his upside-down position. He also has become an escape artist, and has figured out how to get out of several different types of cages. Each time I find him he goes back into a cage very cooperatively, as I think he doesn't actually like being out where there are dogs who can be a bit scary. His latest container is a larger one, with glass walls, and he seems very pleased at his panoramic view. Here he is looking very assured of himself. I am sure someone will come into the shelter soon and find him as charming as we do:)
The handsome boy above is Taylor. He came out of a difficult situation was very sad and frightened to be in the shelter and growled at first. I had a feeling he would not try to bite but to be safe, I wore thick gloves when I first opened his cage to see if I could touch him. I tried touching him with the back of my hand on the top of his head, and the growling stopped. I did llama touches (circular touches using the back of the hand) on his head, making contact with only part of my hand. The back of the hand is less threatening than the front, so can be a good way to introduce yourself. I kept the first sessions short, and before too long, he began to come forward to push his head against my hand.
When I first felt I made a connection to Taylor's inner self through the body work, I felt tears well up in my eyes. This often happens when I first really make a connection to an animal. I felt his sorrow, which felt so heavy, and it seemed as though he wondered why he was there and what he did wrong. I reassured him that he didn't do anything wrong, that he was a very special, wonderful, beautiful cat, and that things were going to be all right for him. Most of the time I say these things out loud, slowly, as I think a very soft, gentle voice can be as soothing as the body work.
I was soon able to stop using the gloves and start working my hand gradually onto his body. I'd do a bit of TTouch on his head, go a bit down the body, back to the head, etc. Now he will roll over on his back or his side in relaxation. Above you see him looking pretty sure of himself. What a brave, lovely kitty!