Make way for the Molly Maguire!


From both groups of Molly Maguires in history.  The first group was made up of tenant farmers in Ireland in the days when the Irish weren't allowed to own land in their own country.  They specialized in making life difficult for landlords.  The second set of Molly Maguires (named after the first) were Irish-American coal miners who attempted to form a union in the 1870s.  Things got rather ugly for everyone involved, unfortunately.  As a baby, this little girl was a fighter, so the name seemed appropriate.


Mold.  We began calling her that because her fuzzy, mottled grey appearance makes her look like something that has been left in the refrigerator too long.  Though it's very inelegant, the name suits her.  When she was being particularly feisty in kittenhood, we refered to her as Toxic Mold.
Other nicknames:  The Pastry Bag, The Fur Seal.

Around August 7, 2003.

I expected her to grow up to be a mid-sized, long-haired girl, based on a couple of her relatives I saw.  She is mid-sized, but she decided to be short-haired instead.  Her fur is plush and velvety and her predominant color is blue - in fact, her coat is very much like Penelope's and we're sure the two had ancestors in common (Molly's coloration is called blue or dilute tortoiseshell).  Also like Penelope, she only has one good eye and has a tendency to be on the chubby side.  Her good eye is a very pretty light green, but she almost always has both eyes closed in pictures.

Mold has gone from 14 pounds, 6 ounces (6.5 kg) to 12 pounds, 10 ounces (5.7 kg). At first we thought it was all due to a change in feeding strategy, but some months ago we learned that hyperthyroidism played a part.


She doesn't talk a whole lot, though she's getting a bit talkier as she gets older.  She meows rather loudly during trips to the vet, but when she's at home, she confines her vocalizations to a very soft Brrrrrp? Brrrrp? unless she's carrying one of her toys in her mouth.  She's a good deal louder then.


She has a nice, average sort of purr and makes biscuits when she's especially happy - usually right after I go to bed and right after I wake up in the mornings.


Every so often, Arlo jumped the wall during supervised outdoor playtime and hid under a bush in the yard.  A frantic search ensued, of course, and he probably just sat where he was, laughing at us.  He pulled this disappearing act on the morning of August 31, 2003, and after a lengthy search, we started to worry that he'd actually gone off our property.

Chris went one way to search, and I checked out the abandoned trailers down the road, where the stray cat colony lives.  As I poked around over there, cats scattered in every direction, except for one tiny, sick little kitten.  I scooped her up and headed back home. 

Arlo sauntered in on his own a few minutes later.  If he hadn't been such a turd, little Molly would probably have died.

As a side note, among the cats who scattered were two half-grown girls who are probably Molly's half-sisters.  Both of them were long-haired, mostly grey dilute tortoiseshells.


Molly is fairly adventurous, but usually sensible.  She was a rather precocious baby:  we thought we'd have to find foster care for her until she could eat on her own, but the second day we had her, she ate part of Chris's English muffin and continued to eat on her own quite well after that.  She even started eating dry food shortly after we got her, which was an accomplishment for such a tiny girl.

When Molly was introduced to her first stranger, she turned into a hissing, spitting ball of teeth and claws.  She grew out of that and now just hides when people come over.

Initially, she was cautious around the adult cats, but she soon began terrorizing them at will.  Occasionally, she even forgot what she was doing and assaulted Irene, which resulted in her getting smacked across the room.

She was very feisty as a little baby, but as an adult, she's the sweetest thing ever.  Her appearance makes me think of Penelope, but her personality is very much like Arivaca's.


She is blind or almost blind in her left eye.  When we found her, she had a nasty eye infection and it did permanent damage to the one eye.  She started on medication the day we found her, of course, so the eye infection and the upper respiratory infection cleared up before any further damage could be done.

She was tested for Feline Leukemia as a baby and as a one-year-old and fortunately, she was negative.  She is the fifth cat we've adopted from the stray colony across the way:  Arivaca and Penelope had Feline Leukemia, and Aisling, Dubh, and Molly do not.

She was diagnosed with hyperthyroidism in the Fall of 2011. See details.


When she was a kitten, it was biting.  These days, she plays with all sorts of toys, but really enjoys aluminum foil balls and three fuzzy balls the most.  Her top favorite things to do are hang out with Dubh, go outside for Supervised Outdoor Playtime, and play with fuzzy balls and Squeaky Pig.


Mold gets along with pretty much everyone, but Dubh is her best friend.  The two play often and hang out together a good deal.  Orion tolerates her quite well, though he doesn't hang out with her intentionally.  She adopted Flynn and Mosaic when we acquired them as four-week-old babies.  Actually, she was kind of forced into it, as they were convinced she was their mother and were very persistent.  Although they're adults now, she still has a mother-kittens relationship with them even if she's often rather crabby about it.  


The first two times she encountered the vacuum cleaner she was a bit wary, but not too alarmed.  Now, she's decided it's scary and hides.