Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 37.djvu/109

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CATS AND THEIR FRIENDSHIPS.

member of the family, and to go and call him to dinner if he was tardy. My cat in like manner used to look to her mistress and to no other person for tidbits from the breakfast-table. "Daisy," of Belfast, who stayed with her mistress during an illness, missed her from the room and went out to look for her. Meeting her unexpectedly, she looked up, says the mistress, "as frightened as if she had seen a ghost. My voice, however, reassured her, and, if ever a cat smiled, I am sure she did." Another cat of the Belfast group, not a favorite and shy toward all other persons, became attached to a sickly infant and its faithful nurse, never failing to respond to its cries by going to its cradle and soothing it by purring and caresses till it became quiet. The cat of M. Arbousset, a French missionary in Africa, refused food when the child to which it was attached died, sought and mourned for its friend in a marked manner, and in a few days was found dead on its grave. The suggestion has been made, and is worthy of consideration,

PSM V37 D109 Archangel blue cat.jpg
Fig. 9.—Archangel Blue Cat. By permission, from Harrison Weir's Our Cats and all about Them. Published by Houghton, Mifflin & Co., Boston and New York.

that when pets die in this way soon after their human companions, it may be because they caught the disease from them rather than from intensity of affection. But this can not apply to the cat told of in the Leisure Hour, which, when the child its playmate died, refused food at first, but afterward, having found its companion's grave, spent most of its time there, going to the house for its meals. A critic, in the Saturday Review, claims to have known more than one instance of a cat, ordinarily constant to its own habits of comfort, breaking through its self-made rules to sit outside the door of an invalid as if waiting for news. The Rev. J. G. Wood's "Pret" was capable of the most earnest manifestations of gratitude. One day, when, having been forgotten, she had become very hungry, she flew "like a mad thing" at the meat and milk her master gave her; but hardly lapped a drop before she went to him purring loudly and caressing him to express her thanks; then went to the plate, "but only just touched