As a young child Priscilla Forehand grew up with a cat named Biscuit, but when her sister developed allergies there were no more furry family members after he passed. She fulfilled her love of felines by helping her mom care for the neighborhood feral colony and it’s only grown since then.
Priscilla has spent the last decade and a half rescuing, adopting, and taking in stray and feral cats, while “catifying” her entire home in the process.
She’s currently a cat mom to 11 adult cats she treats as her four-legged children in a home just under 1,000 square feet. Among her clowder is a senior cat who requires daily intensive care, and a feral cat who luckily lives in harmony with the rest of the cats. Priscilla didn’t take bringing 11 cats into her life lightly and wanted to be sure she was being a responsible cat mom.
She recalls a time, early on when she had five cats, “Someone made a joke about hoarding, so I started doing a lot of research on the subject. I wanted to make sure that I wasn’t becoming a hoarder.”
Her research taught her that, “It really doesn’t matter how many cats you have in your home as long as you can afford to take care of them by taking them to the vet, providing them with the care that they need, and making sure that they are always happy and healthy.”
She knew that to make her home both human and cat friendly, she’d have to start taking advantage of as much of the vertical space as possible. And she’s been lucky to have a partner by her side who shares her love of felines – her husband Michael. The original cat man, Michael had taken in a kitten his Grandmother had rescued from rubble after a tornado.
“With the love and support of my husband I’ve been able to live my dream by opening my heart and my home to so many cats in need,” says Priscilla
Michael built a floor-to-ceiling cat tree, but with so many cats, they knew they’d need more than that, so they installed various Contempocat Modular Cat Towers around their home. Not only are they sleek and modern in design, but they allow for an array of configurations that provide their felines with places to climb, play and sleep.
Several even have feeders attached with one next to a large window so they can have “dinner with a view” – I’m sure the birds that provide dinner entertainment are just happy not to be on the menu!
The home features two extra-wide cat shelves that run the length of two windows in the mud room, and stylish Off-The-Wall pet feeders. The double food bowls allow two cats to dine together (because who likes dining alone!). Cat water fountains are also key to provide moving water, something cats like (which is why they’re so often attracted to faucets!).
Priscilla is doing her best to follow the rule of thumb that you should have one more litter box in a home than you do cats boxes (that would be 12 in her case!). “In such a small home, we don’t have places to ‘hide’ a litter box, so we were very fortunate to discover a company that makes a litter box with a modern design,” she says.
“Modko makes litter boxes that look like pieces of art, like sculptures, almost. They look really cool sitting out in the open, so we currently have ten, in a variety of colors to coordinate with the room and the furniture.”
Not only is the inside of her home cat friendly, but she’s created a 50 foot catio complete with a cat tree, a bench, feeding stations, and a litter box, providing the cats with a safe place to spend time outdoors. She and Michael recently winterized the catio and three cats in particular have taken to it spending anywhere from 3-6 hours a day there.
Let’s just hope my cats don’t see this post or they will be on the next plane to Oklahoma bringing Priscilla’s cat count to 13! (I love how they have place for the humans to hang too so everyone can enjoy the outdoors together!)
Not only is her home optimized for cat stimulation and relaxation, she also spoils them with cat birthday parties and of course they receive gifts on Christmas morning – including presents from their 2-legged Grandpa!
Priscilla’s love of cats extends to her wardrobe, which includes hundreds of articles of clothing with a feline flare! Even her walls are adorned with a large collection of cat art, including three different gallery walls filled with original cat art, prints, and commissioned portraits of her cats.
Priscilla is also talented photographer so check out her cat-filled Instagram page @pjfore. Even one of her cats Mickey (whose birthday photos are included in this post) has his own Instagram account @mickey_the_blue_eyed_kitty.
If you’re a cool cat man or cat woman – or know one – I accept guest posts so send them my way to firstname.lastname@example.org. They should be approximately 500-800 words in length with photos (of course!). We like featuring cat men and women who buck the traditional stereotypes. Check out previous Cat Man Monday and Cat Women Wednesday posts for inspiration!