Pony therapy is best therapy, but cats are pretty good too.
I mentioned that I haven’t been riding much. I’ve managed a grand total of three rides in the last month. For someone that usually rides 3-4 times a week, that really, really sucks. I’m out of shape. She’s out of shape. My winter depression is kicking in and my anxiety is periodically skyrocketing.
There are no lights at the barn. In years past, my best riding partner and I have moseyed around in the dark together. This year, her riding-pony is not currently at the barn. I have been largely unmotivated to get on and mosey in aimless circles by myself two hours past sunset.
On one particular evening I was cranky about how late I was getting to the barn. No ride for me in the dark. Pat the pony on the nose, clean her stall, refill hay nets.
Oh. Okay. Were you feeling neglected? Be careful coming into the stall, I’ll be right back into the hay room in a moment. Right this way, little one. Except – goshdarnit there’s another hole in the hay net.
I tossed it up on a bale to find string and fix it. The cat followed, up on the bale, on the hay net. “Meow!!!” Hello, human. Why are you not petting me? Let me rub on you. I am here. I am the center of the universe give me more attention please. Yes I would like both of your arms. No you may not try to relocate the hay net. Why are you worrying about such things? I am Cat.
And so it was that I spent probably a good twenty minutes hanging out with one of our “feral” barn cats in my hay room, and failed spectacularly at good photos since she insisted on being right on top of me all the time. I did eventually get the hay net patched by holding it in the air while letting her rub against me. What an excellent cat.