A series of illustrations looking at the relationships of people and their pets in the lockdown. Some became work buddies, some loved the extra attention and time and some were just eager to go out.
The idea to create this came when I realized that my cats really helped me get through 2020 and I wanted to share stories of others who had similar experiences. It was fun to get to know all these wonderful folks!
Had fun making this commissioned portrait of Yam & Malia, as a special birthday surprise. Yam is the most adorable kitty, whose tongue sticks out permanently due to an accident. A little story about Yam during the lockdown:
“During this time, Yam has developed an obsession with my shower and the water that goes into the tub. Whenever I’m at the sink next to the tub brushing my teeth or washing my face, he’ll appear, slide into the tub, and then sit there, staring and staring, waiting for me to “make the water happen” (not a direct quote. Yam’s English isn’t great). If I take a little too long for his liking, which I do now just to make him do this, he meows in a frustrated tone. I know I should ignore his demands if I don’t want this habit to continue, but look at that face. I’m helpless. So I sigh and turn on the cold water just a little (grumbling at him about water waste) and let it run for a short bit so he has something to stare at. If I’m really in a good mood or if he puts in a request, I plug up the drain so he can watch a pool begin to fill, then shut it off so he can gaze at it, mind blown. Then I drain it or he hops out, on to the next thing.”
Jasleen shares a story about her beloved Duke.
“There’s nothing Dukey loved more than being with all 5 of us and outside in the garden. Playing with us, running after squirrels, and lying down in the grass. Each moment a pure bliss.”
Rahil shares his lockdown experience with his dear cat Courage.
“My wife and I had rescued Courage 2 years ago, with a spinal injury. He was hardly a year old then and was covered in mites, some fresh wounds, and a couple of toes missing from his paw. After months of laser therapy, he was back on his feet. Since then he's been a part of our lives.
Courage and I share a weird telepathic connection and sleep cycles (although, in hindsight, might be because he gets hungry at ungodly hours).
Even though Courage is smaller than cats of his age, he's got quite a Napoleon complex and is quite territorial, despite that, he has a heart of gold and brings home destitute kittens so we can nurse them back to health.”
Katie talks about the frequent visitor to her home.
“This cat hangs out in my building and has been on a quest to get inside my apartment since I moved in a year ago. I finally gave in during the first week of social distancing, and the cat has been a comforting sometimes-companion since. He’s VERY cuddly and demanding of love, so we snuggle on my couch and he purrs like an engine. And then I send him on his merry way, so we both maintain our independence.”
Simba, who lives with Manasi, shares his lockdown story!
"Ever since I was one month old, I love jumping on humans and hugging them. I turned two years old and I still do the same. In the lockdown, I have learned to say 'good morning' and since we can't go for a walk, I like to be lifted and just walked in front of my house. Because all my human family members are home, I get to sleep deep and relaxed because I don't have to guard the house anymore'
The first #lockdowntailswithchica story is by Priya, who lives with her cats - Motor and Malai.
“I have two cats and both of them need constant attention as they are used to me being in the house all the time now. So they keep meowing outside my work room until I open it (becomes very funny during office calls) and then come and sleep on my work stuff. Also every evening they keep waiting for me on the balcony. That I will get my tea and sit with them.”
Tas shares a story about her loving foster cat - Kokoş.
“İve been fostering Kokoş for almost two months now and am absolutely keeping her, she is so sweet and loving, and surprisingly is very down to go out on her leash! I've always wanted a cat, but travel too much so thought fostering now would be a good thing to do for myself and a little cutie who needs a home. But Kokoş has been the best company and in fact, she's done more for my sanity than I'm doing for her.
She loves plants; when we go on walks she stops and smells or tastes all of them, and that is her favorite corner of the apartment. Even fake ones interest her. Sometimes she falls asleep on my head when I'm laying down. İ don't have lots of photos of the two of us since it's just me and her at home, and she's camera shy."
Aashika shares a lockdown story about her dog - Hazel:
“We've lived in an independent house with a big garden for more than 12 years now, and we've had Hazel for 2. She loves being in nature, it really calms her down! We're moving out of this house soon, and one reason I'm okay with the lockdown is that I get to see her enjoy the greenery every day until it lasts!”
Tanvi talks about her lockdown days with her favorite Mishi.
“Mishi makes for the perfect housemate. He lets me cuddle him when I want to, he lets me have my own space. He alerts me when my grandmother is not keeping well. He also fetches the foil ball reminding me that I must play with him and get in some exercise. He watches shows with me and looks over me (quite literally from the top of the cupboard) when things in quarantine start getting to me. He is my alarm clock, my companion, and a constant source of joy during this not so joyful time.”
Tess shares a little about her lockdown life with Kila:
“Kíla and I love to enjoy the sunshine together. We could sit out the back in the garden all day. Kíla's favorite things to do are; give me cuddles and bark at the passing birds. For a little pomchi she's very territorial at the moment. She is making sure all other animals keep their social distance from her and me.”
A story about tiny little Smoltu by Madhumati.
“So my partner and I had rescued this kitten, she was the last of her litter to be adopted and had a lot of fleas and a parasite in her, which we later found out and treating her and bringing her back to her old self took a lot of effort. But she is now a healthy baby of 7 months, who's grown floofy on a picky diet of only dry cat food and sometimes fish.
We love looking out the window whenever we can but somewhere I think she wishes I would go back to the office so she can finally have the house to herself again!
She was named by my best friend and it sort of just stuck. Bengalis have a thing of adding the "tu" sound to everything to make it sound cute. Since when I got her she was tiny, she got the name smoltu.”
Tonella talks about her housemate - Salle/Lulu:
“I share an apartment with a friend and our cat named Lulu. My friend has been stuck in Delhi as she had gone to visit her parents. I've never lived alone and have always wanted to. I feel really lucky to be sharing my home with him. His antics make getting through these uncertain times so much easier and entertaining. He's a dog in a cat's body and yearns to be outdoors. Right now he has to make do with a window seat and fetching paper balls I throw during playtime. Having him around also ensures I stick to a routine if possible. Before the lockdown, we were discussing getting a companion for him but that's on hold now.”
Juliana from NY shares her lockdown story with her dog - Summer:
“When the weather is nice we go up on our roof at 7 pm to clap, clang, and cheer for essential workers. We take Summer up with us so she can run around but she stays on the leash because we’re not sure if she understands what a roof is yet and don’t want her to fall off. I’m also not sure if she knows why our normally very quiet family start making a lot of noise all of a sudden.”
Little Rosa shares her lockdown story with her parents.
“My pawrents got me home on the 20th of march because they'd been looking for a furry addition to the family for the longest time. The moment maa saw my photos on @the.catrina.foundation’s insta, she knew she had to inquire about me. Maa was put in touch with a wonderful lady named Lubana who is my foster mommy. She, along with a very nice man named Sarfaraz found me, abandoned and alone, and then decided to find me a furever home.
Maa and pops are loving the crap out of me. I love having my day filled with nap time and pet time. Cuddling is not my strongest suit but my humans seem to love it so I let it slide. My favorite past times are napping, climbing window grills, and keeping maa and pawpaw worried that I'll dart out the door, the first chance I get. I wish ma and pawpaw never have to leave.”
Story by Anamica, who talks about her dearest Bolt, aka Pug Jain!
“Bolt is with all of us during quarantine. Basically, he gives us company in anything we are doing, if mom is painting bottles or if I’m washing dishes. He is mostly just sleeping next to us. But when we put dance fitness class in the evening, with high energy he will come and sleep right in the middle of the action. So I can’t do any jumpy steps or I have to go somewhere else. He comes and sits on the yoga mat. He is behind me, in front of me, anywhere and everywhere.”
Veronika shares her lockdown story with her three adorable dogs:
“I'm a big nature lover. I've never been able to go to nature as much as I wanted to and now since we all are in quarantine, I can spend days and days walking in the forest. And of course, I have to bring my three loves with me. On the very first day, I tried to take all of them just by myself and I ended up chasing the biggest one (Bella) when she ran away to catch a horse (oof!).
So from that day, I'm taking only the smallest one (Chloe - she is my spoiled baby) and we're exploring the forest together. We found so many wonderful places and we both are always so happy when we can spend time in nature and connect to each other even more. Every time we come home, they all get some treats, the middle one (Tina) usually does some tricks to impress me (and get more treats), I make myself some tea and we all lie in the middle of our garden and cuddle until the sky is dark.”