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Two Cats, a Crazy Dog and a Tiny House

the hood


Every time we move, our cats adapt to the new environment quickly. Both cats are slowly exploring their new home and they seem to like my mom’s place. Although, they have to deal with my mom’s rambunctious dog, Henry. He’s a five-year old Australian Shepard with a lot of energy. In addition, my mom has cats. Sable, a fifteen year old girl, and an “adoptee.”

The adopted cat has been hanging around the house for the last year. My mom feeds him, but he still didn’t have a name when we arrived on Sunday. I decided to start calling him Mr. Dude. Over the last few days, the cats have sniffed, hissed, and chased each other. We’ve been supervising their play and have a squirt bottle handy, just in case a fight breaks out.

Currently, we are parked in my mom’s drive-way and when I open my front door, I look at my mom’s house. The drive-way resembles a half-moon and there are big shrubs between the house and the street. We have enough privacy and the street isn’t busy, so I’m not worried about the cats getting hit by a car. Plus, they stay close to us. For instance, as I type these words, I’m sitting on my front porch and I have one cat on each side of me. They are loving the spring weather!

The big house and the little house

Our french doors open to the side yard. It’s a sweet little spot because the grass is green and my mom has a rose garden that sits on the side of the big house. Beyond the beautifully manicured lawn is a little orchard filled with orange trees and the RV garage. The garage is where my parents stored their 30-foot long fifth wheel. My mom sold the fifth wheel right before my dad died, last year. Now it’s empty. The cats are digging the orchard and the RV garage. Before I started writing this article, they were patrolling the area.

RV Garage

Across the street, there is a big open field that Christie was romping in this morning. (So much for supervised play.)

the feild

My mom’s house sits on one-acre and in addition to the side yard, she has a huge back-yard, with a pool and a garden. Henry — my mom’s crazy dog — owns the backyard. When Henry is in the backyard, the cats stay away. Henry likes to herd cats, birds, and neighborhood dogs. The cats aren’t fond of Henry’s behavior and they don’t like his loud bark.

The back-yard

For now, it seems like the cats and the dog have sorted out their territories and segregated themselves. It’s been great to watch the cats explore their new environment, and since we can tow our tiny house with us, it’s nice that they don’t have to adjust to a new home. If they get scared or hear Henry barking, they run right into the little house. Both cats know it’s their safe space.

Be well,

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Dan Garner May 8, 2013, 2:37 pm

    We recently got rid of all of our “stuff” and moved into a motorhome. Our pets (dogs) were a concern but they seem to have adapted wonderfully. I think that they enjoy the sights and sounds of the sunny campground.

    Dan @ Zen Presence – Ideas for Meaningful Living

  • Ani Blair May 8, 2013, 2:38 pm

    <3 Heavenly!

  • Debbie Roes May 8, 2013, 5:00 pm


    I love reading about your adventures and seeing photos of your beautiful cats. Henry is such a handsome dog, too! Your new surroundings look so gorgeous and green. I’m sure your mom is very happy to have you around.

    Your photos are beautiful! I can’t believe they are all taken with an iPhone. It makes me want to get one because the photos taken with my Droid 2 phone (dinosaur phone, I know…) look terrible. Of course, it could be operator error as well…

    Years ago, when I first saw a tiny house story (might have been Logan, as his name sounds familiar), I wondered how anyone could ever live in such a small space. Now when I see your house, I feel a sense of peace and serenity and your life looks happy and blissfully simple. I no longer want SO much stuff and have been paring down more and more over the past few years. One of my final frontiers is my closet, which is why I’m blogging about my compulsive shopping recovery and have taken on Project 333 beginning in April. I used to think happiness could be found in things, but now I know it comes through relationships and the simple pleasures in life – life enjoying a cup of coffee surrounded by your significant other and two beautiful cats!

  • Scott May 8, 2013, 6:39 pm

    Your mom has a terrific looking place and your tiny house fits right in! Happy for you!

  • Sandra Pawula May 8, 2013, 8:34 pm


    I’m so happy your cats adapt so easily when you move. Our recent move was the first one with our cats. I read up on the internet and everyone says to keep your cats inside for 2 weeks. Sure! Our cats are wild. No way! We brought each one over individually. They both, in turn, took refuge under the bed. But Chitta was out from under the bed the first night stalking all around our small studio and waking us up throughout the night. They both went out after two days and were super champions about coming home. Although Chitta played hard to get at first! Kitty love can be so intense. 🙂 Thanks for the lovely tour of your new surroundings.

  • mark owen-ward May 8, 2013, 10:48 pm

    Hi tammy – haven’t visited your site for a while but I’ve come back and its just bliss reading this little piece of the world. For all your worries and concerns about your life and moves, its like balm to the soul reading your blog. Peace and light seem to flow out of rk and that’s wonderful for readers. Enjoy your time in Red Bluff. Looking forward to travelling vicariously through California! mark

    • Tammy Strobel May 9, 2013, 10:00 am

      Mark – It’s so good to hear from you! Thank you for leaving such a sweet comment. I appreciate it.

  • Hedvig May 9, 2013, 1:14 am


    Thank you for a great blog! Your are such an inspiration when it comes to downsizing and simple, meaningful living. It´s fun to follow you on your journey and I love the cat and dog photos:)

    Greetings from Norway

  • Wendy May 9, 2013, 5:53 am

    Beautiful photos.. I love that area and try to ride the Chico Century each spring. Its good to know the kitties are adapting. One thing I realized with our 3 and recent abandoned 4th(a sad story) is they tend to sort it out. the 4th-CC would only want to stay in the garage but now she has her own room( my office) and is starting the hang out with the rest of the gang.

  • Piggywhistles May 9, 2013, 6:16 am

    It is great to see the photos of your mother’s house. It looks like a great place to stay. Being an Australian I was very interested in the Australian Shepherd – I had never heard of such a dog. It was interesting to read that it is actually American. Love your blog. It is really inspiring.

  • Wanda May 9, 2013, 7:27 am

    The pictures are amazing!! I did want to ask since the cats spend time outdoors how do you handle the flea issue? Also have the cats ever had run ins with things like snakes or other types of animals? How did you handle that?

    • Tammy Strobel May 9, 2013, 10:03 am

      @Wanda – We give the cats flea medication each month. Luckily the cats haven’t run into snakes, raccoons, etc. We keep them inside at night, though, and that seems to help. 🙂

  • Victoria May 9, 2013, 8:19 am

    Your cats are so lucky that their home is portable. No matter the outside environment, they have a familiar home to retreat to. Cats are creatures of habit and usually don’t like change very much. The last time I moved to a new apartment, my poor cat was so upset she spent the first day hiding in back of the closet and wouldn’t come out for food or water. Finally, late that night I heard her prowling around my apartment, sniffing out everything that was familiar and then she came to curl up beside me in bed, purring into my ear. I knew she’d be okay, but there were many anxious hours!

  • Joy @ Joyfully Green May 9, 2013, 9:41 am

    Pets really do make a house into a home. There is nothing cozier than seeing a snoozing animal curled up on your couch…and joining it for a warm snuggle!

  • Rebecca May 9, 2013, 11:03 am

    Typical shepard they love to herd anything mainly sheep. Your moms house is amazing but, I love your house too.
    I am glad that everyone has sorted themselves out. Glad your cats have a safe place/territory to call their own.

    Thanks for the post.

  • Kim Fortin May 9, 2013, 12:52 pm

    Hi, Tammy!

    Okay, I gotta ask: would you be willing to share the sunset (or is it sunrise) photo with us so we could download for a desktop picture? I always love that one and still have the “10 Positive Emotions” one on my work desktop 🙂

    I’m always so happy to see your landscape photography because it makes me take a deep breath and just feel relaxed instantly.

    I hope you’ll consider it 🙂

    With caring,


    • Tammy Strobel May 9, 2013, 4:11 pm

      Hi Kim – Thank you and sure! You can download the image by clicking here.

      • Kim Fortin May 10, 2013, 12:08 pm

        Thanks so much, Tammy!

  • Bev Youngman May 9, 2013, 1:29 pm

    You are in such a wonderful place – Love reading about your adventures abd seeing the pictures. Thank you

  • Beth Bardino May 9, 2013, 1:42 pm


    You’re giving me a serious case of wanderlust. How heavenly to be able to move, and yet take your home with you! Your mom’s property looks positively luscious!

  • Louise Krupski May 9, 2013, 2:48 pm

    The picture you have taken of the road just looks so inviting – would love to be there with Ruby my dog, and she would definitely stay away from the kitties – Jocasta my cat is much more the queen of the house. Keep the pictures coming they make us all smile, Louise

  • Natalie May 9, 2013, 2:53 pm

    Great Post. One of the hardest things is getting animals (particularly cats) on board for relocating and meeting new animals. It sounds like yours are thriving. 🙂

  • Mr Simple May 11, 2013, 3:54 pm

    Beautiful imagery.
    Simple life.

    Love it.

    Mr Simple

    print screen

  • Elisa Pinheiro May 12, 2013, 12:57 pm

    Hey Tammy,

    Your new place looks good! I like the blue walls and the idea of an orchard of orange trees! They say californian oranges are the best but I wouldn’t know because we eat spanish or morrocan ones here 🙂

  • Linton May 17, 2013, 3:03 pm

    Interesting blog! Here are some small cabins built by the Amish in Kentucky: http://www.amishcabincompany.com Energy efficient cabins made in an off-grid Amish facility that fit into the small house, green building movement, using Amish craftsmanship that is well-known for quality construction. Delivered pre-built and fully assembled. With enough of a clearing above and to the sides, they can literally be taken up the side of a mountain by dozer, and off-grid solar power options are now readily available.

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