And… Another Animal Story

Cleo, our cat during the ’50s & ’60s, was a prolific kitten maker. A promiscuous child, to say the least. She had a wonderful relationship with Heidi and Brutus, staying with them when they played during the day and sleeping with them at night.

This story takes us back to Cleo’s 1st litter. When she began to give birth to the 9 that she had, Heidi placed her large head next to her. When the 1st kitten arrived (and we were there watching), Heidi gently put the kitten in her mouth. We freaked, thinking she was going to eat it, but she gently carried it to her box and began to clean the newborn. This continued with the nine kittens, and each time after the cleaning, she brought the kitten back and placed it next to Cleo. Cleo never flinched while Heidi took and returned each back to her. Animals do communicate. We can learn so much from them. Over the years, Cleo gave birth to a total of 48 kittens, and we found a home for every one of them. And now, the rest of the story.

During each spring beginning in 1960, we would move a whole bunch of stuff to Camp Shasta in preparation for staff and campers arriving at camp. No 600-mile trip could be wasted, so we moved as much stuff as possible. A typical trip might include a water ski boat, kayaks, sailboat, and on one of the first trips, a filly the kids at Purple Sage named “Sy-The-Clown” And eventually shortened to “Cyclone.” The mare that gave us Cyclone was a big Tennessee Walker with “71” blazoned on her flank; we called her 71. So, Cyclone (the filly) grew up with Heid, Brutus, and Cleo and honestly thought she was one of the family. They treated her as if she was. But the point to the story is that as Lenette and I drove to camp with them all, when we stopped for a break, we “ALL” went for a walk, usually at night, People came to witness our parade. We must have looked like a page out of Noah’s biblical Story.


Author: Sy Ogulnick

Sy Ogulnick received a BA from UCLA, Teacher’s Credential from Los Angeles Board of Education and completed phase I (Master’s portion) in a Doctor of Behavioral Science program at California Coast University. Sy leased and operated a summer day camp in LA. He and his wife then purchased virgin wilderness land in Northern CA, where they built and operated a coed summer camp. They moved to Las Vegas, NV, and purchased, built and operated a community children’s program for families staying in a major resort casino in Las Vegas. They have created programs for children nationwide that employed many people and in the process developed successful training programs for personnel. This led Sy to lecture on how to train staff and the creating of community within the workplace. Sy was then invited to speak at professional conferences on how best to hire and train employees, which led to his becoming a consultant in the art of improving relationships in a work environment and eventually to his epiphany that “Leaders are the primary problem and the answer to the personnel issues that arise in the workplace.” Sy has written numerous papers on the subject of interpersonal relationships, leadership and power. He has lectured throughout the United States, has been interviewed by the media and has appeared on many radio and TV talk shows

One thought on “And… Another Animal Story”

  1. Cleo, Heidi, Cyclone and Brutus. What wonderful friends to have. Difficult to know what to say about these animals, your family members. These kinds of animals as well as others, e.g., elephants, respond to kind treatment, no question. They care for one another. They care for their humans, too. When Lois and I go for walks in our “new” neighborhood, we try to stop dog walkers so we can pet their dogs. Few dogs dislike this; their humans are often chary of their own pets’ behaviors. One couple of a certain age have a large, snowy white labradoodle called Trooper who loves to have his chin skritched. Can’t think of a dog we’ve petted who didn’t like that.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *