Millie is no longer Lottie's cossetted little kitten-sister, and often gets snapped or hissed at when she comes bouncing up to her in her bumptious over-enthusiastic way. Lottie spends much of her life having a Little Lie Down, and resents a fat pushy youngster trampling all over her for a cuddle
So Millie has taken to coming to me, or to visitors (L, above), for a cuddle, which is very sweet, and rewarding for us - shame she took so long to discover the joys of snuggling in with a devoted human. And she drools a little too, just to make her point. But there's no mistaking how disappointed and bewildered she is when Lottie rejects her, and my heart goes out to her, even though I can see how she asks for it sometimes.
But she is strangely and intensely attached to her downstairs scratching post. The upstairs one gets used too, simply for scratching and stretching, but it's the downstairs one that has to be laid on its side, scratched, fought with, played with, and often snuggled up against for a little sleep. I think it's the most bizarre object for a little cat to get so attached to, but it's a permanent fixture in the sitting room, and invariably the first thing she goes to when she comes in.
Watching her, I was reminded sharply of very little children and their comfort blankets or other objects that they couldn't be parted from. Now, without anthropomorphising too much and making you want to throw up, I wondered if a young cat could also have a need for such a transitional object? Winnicott doesn't mention cats....
At any rate, I look forward to the next stage in her emotional development. It's an interesting life with our Millie; the scratching post and I will do all we can to keep her happy and secure.