Gretel is the 4th and final cat in our happy household. She came to me from one of my sisters who adopted her, had her for a few weeks, and realized that she was allergic to Gretel's ultra fine hair. So poor Gretel Asparagus (yes, that is her real name) had to leave the lap of luxury and single ownerhood, and move into the slop house where there were two cats already residing. Can you see how UPSET she is about this? About 5 months after Gretel came, I lost Theo, a cat I'd had since college, and then it was down to two. She very quickly took over as the alpha male, even though George is about 3 times as big as she is. However, everything has worked out very well, even after I joined forces and abodes with my sister and her two cats. There is really very little discord, except when Andrew is on one of his wildings, in which case, the other three rally against the whirling dervish to try and slow him down.
Gretel's fur is like grey velvet. There are different layers of color to it and it is so rich. If you look very closely at her in real life, you can see that she has stripes around her tail of a slightly darker grey. She loves to be brushed - absolute ecstasy! She is a cat of routine and god forbid you start something and then decide you don't want to do it anymore. Right now, she sits on the bathroom sink in the mornings until I'm done showering, and as I brush my hair, I have to brush hers as well. Her brush is kept next to the sink so it's always ready when needed. If I'm running late (which is not unusual), she will reach out and grab me going by, with claws fully UNsheathed, to remind me of my duties.
Gretel is the Diva of the family. Her preferred method of transportation is to be carried on some one's shoulder, while she hangs on with all her might. This is not a bad thing in the winter when heavy sweatshirts or sweaters are in use, but during the summer when T-shirts are out, it can be killer. For evening treats, she likes to be summoned individually from upstairs, preferably by someone coming up to carry her down. You might think that we'd just leave her out of the treat process, but we are suckers (with a capital S) and spoil our cats unmercifully. Thank god neither of us has kids - think of the monsters we would loose on the world.