Pet Tips ‘n’ Tales: Yogi’s Comfort Cat

Artist Grandma Gloria with her young model, Yogi.

Meg and her husband, Tony, adopted a fur baby, Yogi the French Bull dog. He is much adored and because of the pup’s separation anxiety, he goes everywhere with them or to his two grandmother’s homes to be puppy-sat. He attended their wedding and sleeps on their bed.

His Grandparents, also charmed by Yogi, fell head over heels for him. In fact, Grandma Gloria is an artist, and she couldn’t resist committing him to a 4x3 foot canvas! The art sits proudly on the prominent living room wall watching over her home. A painting of that size might appear extreme, but not where her grand dog is concerned.

Yogi is otherwise a normal dog, who loves dog parks, other dogs, and especially other Frenchies. From a young age, he visited a family member in a nursing home. He is a charismatic-chunky-short-strong dog who loves to be adored. He gives back that affection two hundred-fold leaving everyone in the care home smiling.

“Frenchie’s are fiercely loyal and loving,” said Grandma Gloria. “The bond to their humans is incredibly intense. With that however, comes a tendency towards separation anxiety. Leaving Yogi for any length of time was distressing to him in the extreme, so after more than a year of schlepping him to and from his ‘grandmas’ homes’ Meg decided, ‘Yogi needs a buddy cat. It would be a perfect companion.’ We all said she was insane, including Tony.”

Meg is as tenacious as a terrier, so her quest was on. She rescued Alice, the runt of a litter with extraordinary markings and the quest suddenly came to a stop. Alice calmly strolled around, completely at ease, exactly the opposite of excitable Yogi. The tiny kitten hopped up onto Meg, sniffed at the decidedly doggie smell on her clothing and settled down for a nap. Adoption was officially completed.

Once home, Yogi was placed on a leash and allowed to watch as Alice checked out her ‘new digs’ and her new dog.  She marched up to him, bold as brass, sniffed, explored, and skipped away when Yogi lunged with too much enthusiasm. At first, curious Yogi was unsure if she was food, a new toy, or another dog to play with.

Two days later, Alice, a tiny little speck of a kitten, took over and the two of them went into Yogi’s doggie tent and slept together cementing their inseparable joy-filled friendship. Alice grooms her big brother and mothers him. They play constantly and Yogi is no longer anxious when ‘his humans’ have to leave him alone. Both Grandmothers are free to enjoy their retirement with occasional visits from their grand dog.

“A dog may be a man’s best friend but in Yogi’s world, it’s a cat,” said Grandma Gloria. “I guess this means that I am going to have purr-chase another large canvas and paint it to do justice to Yogi’s comfort-service kitty, Alice!”


Edith in Michigan wrote, “My friend’s son also adopted a comfort cat for his dog with separation anxiety!  It is working well!”

“Toss dental floss in the garbage (not the toilet, it bungs up sewage plant machinery),” emailed Gloria. “If a pet swallows floss, it becomes a serious or death situation. Floss rips their intestines, and they may not make it through surgery.”

Facebook quote: ‘All pets are therapy cats; some are working undercover.’

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