noun, French Translation mille ‘thousand’, feuille, ‘leaf’ or ‘layer’. Definition: A pâtisserie dish composed of puff pastry layered with a filling of crème patissière and/or fruit.
What’s that I hear you all say? “That’s lovely but what’s has a French pastry got to do with your new kitten?” Well bare with and I shall tell all…
For those of you who don’t know, my husband is currently studying to become a patissièr (pastry chef) at posh school Le Cordon Bleu in Wellington. We’ve both grown up in 3 cat households and it was always our intention that we would have 3 cats too. We (well I) decided after seeing a litter of 12 week old sphynxes on my recent trip to Auckland, that, as Chris and I were about to celebrate our 10th anniversary, it was time to add our 3rd cat to the family. I would surprise Chris with the kitten as an anniversary gift, well kind of, I’m not good at the whole secret thing. So as quoted from the last episode of my favourite TV show, Miranda, “someone let the cat out of the bag!” We’ve always loved sphynxes and after losing our gorgeous hairless girl Pixel to FIP 3 years ago, and at a very young age, we missed the presence of a sphynx in the house and often considered getting another. The time was never right, until now!
So after explaining all that, you’re probably still not entirely certain why we named him after a delicious pastry treat. Well aside from the obvious connection to Chris’ future job, the reasoning is all in the translation: Mille Feuille means ‘a thousand layers’ and with all those gorgeous sphynx wrinkles, as well as his stripy markings, he’s a seal tabby, what could be more appropriate! It is also a small tribute to Pixel. She was named after the tools of my trade, so Millefeuille is named after something Chris often makes in his.
But what do Jazz and Mr Tinkles think?
Jazz has always been a social cat, when we brought Tinks home he had an instant best friend, and Tinks is so easy going, as are most Ragdolls. I wasn’t worried about introducing a new kitten to our house. Once I collected Mille from the airport I took him straight into his new room and let Jazz and Tinks sniff the cat cage for a couple of hours. As suspected Tinks didn’t seem too fussed about the smell of a new cat but that smell alone was enough to get Jazz freaking out completely. I shut the 2 boys out and let Mille have a wonder around the living room and slowly introduced them. Over the next 48 hours Jazz was absolutely distraught, he paced around the house howling, literally non-stop and didn’t eat or go to the toilet. I looked at lots of cat websites, bengal forums and asked Mille’s breeder, Sharyn (Fuzzoff sphynx) for advice. Bengals like Jazz can be very territorial, when we got Tinks Jazz was still a kitten, but now he is all grown up maybe he’s gotten used to his own space without intruders. He got so bad that I had to take him to the vet who advised giving him time to adjust and sedating him for a day or 2! I was so upset at what I’d done and was certain Jazz would never come round. I prepared myself for the possibility that we’d have to send Mille back to Auckland. In the meantime Tinks was making friends and Mille was becoming a friendly, cuddly kitten. His typical sphynx nature, which is often described as part monkey, part dog, part child, and part cat was certainly evident. He wasn’t afraid of the big boys or all the meowing and hissing coming from Jazz.
Fast forward 2 weeks and I’m so happy and relieved to say that Jazz, Tinks and Mille have made huge progress in becoming friends. They eat together, play together and although Jazz can only tolerate Mille’s kitten antics in small doses, I can see that he enjoys running round like crazy with him. I don’t know why or what changed Jazz’s mind so suddenly but Chris and I are both pleased he did. With Millefeuille’s lack of hair, it won’t surprise you that he quite enjoys cuddling up to Mr Tinkles big hairy belly, he also loves the warmth generated by my Mac, which he insistes on balancing on top of. His favourite toy is a scrunched up shop receipt and he eats A LOT, he’s developed a great fondness for butter, which we are trying to stop! Needless to say, I’ve had my camera by my side ready to take photos of him at all times. So, here he is, our new boy Millefeuille, please feel free to tell me how gorgeous you think he is!