"My cat won't allow anyone to touch her except me. She is mean to everyone else." Those are not the words I want to hear about a cat I am about to rescue in a tree, but, to fully understand this cat, I need to dig deeper. Is the problem with the cat, the people, or both? Some cats have a lower threshold for petting, and some don't like to be touched in certain places at all. Some people don't understand the warning signals the cat is giving them and continue to annoy it until the cat swats at them. It's the same with people: sometimes, you're just grouchy don't want to be bothered, and, sometimes, certain people just rub you the wrong way. Sometimes, it's both. After more thoroughly questioning Rebecca about her cat, Marshmallow, I began to learn that it's both. Marshmallow can be sweet if approached and treated properly, but she is not a cuddle-cat and not a lap-sitter.
Marshmallow is a five-year-old brown tabby girl who Rebecca raised and bottle-fed as a kitten, and she was stuck fifty feet high on the lowest limb of a tall Sweet Gum tree in Covington, Louisiana. The tree was at the edge of a wooded area that had been heavily damaged by Hurricane Ida a year ago, so there were downed trees and cut stumps of small trees that had been cleared all around the cat's tree. This would a horrible and deadly place for a cat to fall out of a tree.
Despite her reputation, Marshmallow was actually friendly and happy to see me when I climbed up to her. Of course, she was more than ready for someone to help her after being stuck in the tree for two nights. I limited my touching only to her head and cheeks and only a couple of times. I tried to lure her into the carrier, but she was reluctant to go all the way inside even with food in the back end for encouragement. Since she was so comfortable with me, I wondered if I could get her to step on my lap, so I decided to give it a try. Using the food to entice her and a little patience, I did, indeed, get her to step on my lap where I had already spread the cat bag. Once she was fully on my lap and eating the food, I pulled the bag up around her while removing the food at the same time. She took it all in stride and never complained.
Rebecca and her family were all very relieved and took Marshmallow back inside to recover. She sent a picture of her to me later to show her getting some much-needed rest in a soft, comfy spot.