The Other Side of the Baby Gate

On the other side of the baby gate, safe from all the greyhounds,  lives our little cat, Angie! We adopted Angie from Lothian Cat Rescue in May 2006, along with her sister Tink (who is sadly no longer with us). Her family had handed the pair in after discovering their child was allergic to cats (as am I, but hey there’s nothing a little antihistamine won’t fix!).

There were dozens of cats to choose from when my partner & I visited the shelter in Bonnyrigg, but Angie & Tink were the first 2 we laid eyes on & I knew right away we had to have them! They both had wonderful emerald green eyes & the loveliest friendly natures. 2 years old, they both had tabby & white markings, Tink with short hair & Angie with long.

Tink & Angie

Tink was only with us for 6 months, before she was tragically killed by a car on the road outside our house. Angie took a while to get used to being the only cat, & we deliberated whether or not we should continue to let her outdoors after what happened to poor Tink. However, having always been an ‘outdoor’ cat she really wasn’t happy being cooped up in the house so we decided just to let things be & take the risk.  Despite all the animals we have around us these days, we do still miss Tink & will never forget her.

Tink – never forgotten

Since we moved out to the countryside last year, Angie has become an independent little madam & likes to roam the fields hunting birds, mice & even frogs! Of course, she likes to share these wonderful delicacies with us by dragging them through the cat flap every now & then – how lovely! She always comes in in the evening though (probably coz she knows that’s when I put her food out!) & tends to stay in all night, snuggled up on our bed with us.

Angie sprawls out on our bed!

Since acquiring our greyhounds last year, we’ve had to install a baby gate to separate off part of the house where Angie can take refuge! Despite assurances from the Retired Greyhound Trust that Max was 100% cat-safe, he most certainly isn’t & I would never leave the 2 alone together. It’s a shame, as I know there are plenty greyhounds who are cat-safe. It probably has something to do with the fact Angie is a very fluffy cat & also very timid. I’m sure if Max encountered a bold cat who stood their ground & hissed at him on approach, he would soon get the message!

Angie in her own bed (for once!)

The gate never ceases to amuse first-time visitors to our house, & I do dream that someday our pets will all manage to live in harmony & we can take it down, but until that day the gate stays: The dogs get the kitchen & the living room (with access to the garden via the kitchen); the cat gets the bedroom & the bathroom (with cat flap in the bedroom window!).  Angie doesn’t seem to mind at all, seeing as she spends the majority of her time outdoors anyway, & I think she feels pretty smug that she gets to share our bed with us while the dogs have to sleep through the house! Plus, I often catch her out of the corner of my eye, silently following the dogs & I on our daily walks round the fields, her sparkling green eyes peeping through the undergrowth.

‘Cat & Can’ – Angie investigates our watering can

This last photo of Angie was taken in our garden just the other day by my partner, Martin, & is available to purchase as a print from his Etsy shop, Red Row Studio.

6 Responses to “The Other Side of the Baby Gate”


  • What a lovely story, but sad about Tink.

    I, too have an improvised ‘baby’ gate, made from a Huge! picture frame to separate my two house rabbits.

    It even has a perspex insert so that the opponents may view and hopefully become accustomed to each other!

  • Lol! Ours has bars, so the cat & dogs can see each other. Sometimes the dogs get a bit TOO excited just by that though!

  • What a sweetheart. I love cats too but also have allergies. If I took Benadryl, I would be asleep all of the time. Do your meds affect you that way? I wish there were a way for us to own a cat.

    So sad about Tink. They looked like cute little companions.

  • It’s cetirizine (AKA Zyrtec) that I take & I’ve never had problems with drowsiness. (Used to work as a hospital doctor & that’s what we’d prescribe patients if we wanted to avoid sedative effects.) Really notice the difference if I accidentally miss a day though – my eyes start streaming & I get wheezy… My parents went crazy when they found out I got a cat (we never had one at home when I was a kid because I was allergic) but I think Angie’s worth every tablet! ;-)

  • Beautiful, touching story. Thank you for the feature in your lovely treasury, and I can see the resemblance between Tink and the cat in my painting. So sad when loved ones leave us, and it is always too too soon.

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