Sonja Heriban wasn’t necessarily planning on getting two cats, but it’s a good thing she did.
When a farm cat belonging to a childhood friend of her fiance had kittens, the Vancouver couple set out to adopt one of them, and found two little cats cuddling together in the same compartment of a cat condo.
They “fell in love” with Lili, the friendly dark gray kitten, almost immediately, but her snuggling companion, orange Renley, was a little more reticent.
“Renley hid the whole time we were there and cried when we tried to pick him up,” Heriban told The Huffington Post in an email. Even so, the couple opted to take both cats home.
“I believe they were close before we even took them home since they had been sleeping together when we picked them up, but they must have bonded a lot more when we brought them home,” Heriban said. “Anytime they slept they were cuddling, and if Lili was in another room Renley would cry until she was in sight.”
The cats are now a little more than a year old, and Renley has overcome his initial shyness and nervousness. Now, Heriban describes him as “our little bull in a china shop.” He has no regard for authority and meows assertively whenever he wants something.
His punk attitude is the perfect foil to Lili, who Heriban calls “literally the perfect cat.”
“She’s never had litter box issues, never accidentally scratched anyone, is always sweet and wants to be cuddled,” Heriban said. “When we have people over she’ll run up to them and greet them, often jumping on their lap as soon as she gets a chance.”
Often, Lili has to meow sharply to keep Renley in line when he wants to play a little more aggressively than she’d like.
She also looks out for her brother. Once, Heriban and her fiance didn’t realize why Lili was meowing in the middle of the night, only to later found out that Renley, who had somehow gotten out of the house, had been attacked by two coyotes.
Luckily, a neighbor who was awake saw the attack and chased the coyotes away, and Renley has recovered from his injuries after vet treatment. But Heriban realizes now that Lili’s loud meowing was almost certainly her trying to tell them Renley was in trouble.
Overall, the siblings’ love for each other is more powerful than their differences.
“[Lili] absolutely adores her brother Renley, and follows him around everywhere he goes,” she said. “They’re almost always together whether it be outside or lying around in the house.”