You can milk anything with nipples.

I spent weeks looking for it.

The flaw.

We rescued a cat for Kate’s 7th birthday. We rescued a 3-year-old adult cat, named Penny. Penny spent the majority of her life at an animal rescue shelter in Kansas City. Before placed at the rescue shelter, she was a stray kitten. That’s all the information we had to go on when we brought Penny home to Kate.

I’m not a fool. What’s wrong with her? Why didn’t anyone want her? There would be a flaw, every pet has one much like every human has one. I made it a mission to find the flaw. My flaw is finding flaws in everything.

I checked the litter box every morning and I smelled every room for cat pee.

The litter box is full. There are no scents of a cat living here. Penny has no problems with bladder control.

Ok, cat pee is a non-issue. Scratch marks. I’ve never had a cat with a full set of claws. I searched for scratch marks on the couch and the bed posts. I looked for the cat hanging from the window treatments when I pulled into the driveway.

No destruction. Her scratch posts are used on a regular basis. The only time I see Penny in the window is when she’s on her cat tower.

I waited.


No hairballs.

I got it – got it. Maybe she’ll hate the vet. Cats hate the cat carrier and cats hate the vet. Maybe she has cancer.


Penny smiled for me once I told her that her vet got his veterinary degree from K-State, of course she loves her vet. He’s a Wildcat. She let the vet feel her up. She has no signs of cancer.

Fine. Maybe she hates dogs.

Penny is a lover, not a hater. 

Then maybe she hates the kids chasing her.

Penny loves the kids chasing her. 

No way. There is no way we adopted the perfect 3-year-old cat.

Penny is Kate’s cat. But is Kate Penny’s human? Maybe Penny would chose our bedroom, or even Emma’s bedroom, as her home base.

Penny decided her room would be Kate’s room and she sleeps with Kate. 



What the hell is that?


I found the flaw. Penny nurses herself to sleep.

It’s a thing. Google it.

Penny’s favorite part of the day is snuggling in bed at night. She snuggles next to Kate. They wait for their bedtime story to be read to them.


Goodnight Moon. By Margaret Wise Brown.

Good night, room. Good night, moon.

Good night, cow jumping over the moon. Good night, cat nursing on the blanket next to me. STOP IT, PENNY. 

The cat’s flaw is solid gold.


We should have named her Focker.


A nursing kitten is cute. A nursing 3-year-old cat is not cute. Watching an adult cat nursing next to you is like watching a three-year-old human nursing next to you. If you’re a mom nursing your 3-year-old, that’s totally cool. I don’t care what you do to soothe your kid. I’m all for breastmilk. I’m all for formula. I’m all for cow’s milk.

But if you whip out your boob in front of me in my own house because your 3-year-old says, “give me some nums nums” or whatever it’s called once a child can speak, that’s going to make me fall silent and stare at the ceiling. I don’t know where to look and I’m terrified the kid will pop off and start talking to me.

The Focker cat is making me focking uncomfortable.

Don’t believe me?

Here, latch on. No one believes me until I show them this.

Although the phenomenon is rare, there are different reasons adult cats nurse on a blanket or a shirt or Robert De Niro’s nipple. They may have been taken away from their mother too soon and in some Freudian way, it needs to suckle because it missed out when it was young. The cat may be trying to show you signs of stress. The cat may be soothed by nursing, much like an older kid with a pacifier. No one really knows why an adult cat nurses.

If no one knows why Penny suckles in bed then no one can tell me how to stop it.

I found Penny’s flaw – the adopted cat just needs a mom.

Little Focker.


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