Here at the Institute we have observed that the six study subjects all have unique personalities. As our three two-year-olds have evolved from kittenhood, we have noticed that each is becoming quite different from the others even though they have been raised in the same environment with the same passionate, loving, smothering adoration and care.
The three have been belly scratched and handled by many visitors to the Institute. They have been hissed at and shunned equally by the two elderly cats. They have eaten from the same bottomless pits of dry and wet food and shared the same treats.
Yet, their personalities have gone in different directions. Our black Velvet is the alpha cat now. We can stroke her but not too much. She likes a cushy lap, but don’t touch her belly or feet. Don’t dare trim her sharp nails. The other cats sometimes shy away from her because she attacks them and plays too rough. Whereas they all used to wrestle and tumble in play, Velvet has become the number one bully. Velvet is the only one who turns rogue and leaves scratch marks on our hands. We stop petting her and leave her alone when she scratches us. We never strike our study subjects or abuse them in any way. Why she is like this, we have no idea. Oh, well, I do love to hear her purr in my lap. And she keeps us warm at night. She likes to walk and rest on my back when I am feeding them and when I vacuum the Kitty Cat Solarium and the Kitty Cat Excretorium. Velvet is always the first to eat in the Kitty Cat Banqueting Hall. She is also the first to poop in the litterbox after I scoop it. She is initially shy around guests but will make an appearance after an hour or two if Socks is also networking the crowd.
Zippy, the calico, is becoming number two on the bully scale. She was once the most gentle of the bunch but the past two months, she has been observed spot-attacking the other subjects-strike and leave. She is still gentle with us and is the one who is in my lap as I work on my computer. She often initiates the Indy500 races around the hallway. Strangely, Zippy holds back at Kitty Cat Breakfast and Kitty Cat Din Din. She usually waits until the others have dined and then eats alone. Zippy loves being brushed and petted. She is shy around guests.
Socks remains the most cuddly of the two-year-olds. The tuxedo nurses and kneads his fleece blanket like an unweaned kitten. He continues to fall on his side in front of us as we climb the stairs or go down a hall begging a bellyrub which he always gets. He still loves to play fetch with his catnip toys but no longer tops 30 rounds. The only times we have received scratches from Socks or Zippy is when something spooks them and they flee our arms or lap.
Results of Two-Year Observations: Indeedie, kitty cats change personalities as they mature and become quite different even though they are raised the same. In fact, become even more inscrutable.