Nicolai, a Siberian cat who goes by Nikki or Doodle, has been by the side of owner Christina Fettig through thick and thin. Divorced shortly after adopting him, Fettig says Nikki "has been my constant companion throughout many life changes," including two moves and a second marriage. "He's a very loving cat," Fettig says of her 10-year-old kitty, who despite his affection toward her and her husband, P.J., isn't a huge fan of small children. "He loves to cuddle and snuggle, and prefers sleeping on our laps or in his tent on the couch." The couple knows Nikki prefers small spaces, and they pile up blankets on the sofa in their Odenton home to make his tent, where he snuggles right in to doze. "He's unlike other cats in that he doesn't shy away when people are around," Fettig says. "If we have people over, he will saunter into the room and plop right down." Even so, he does have his limits and is fearful of plastic bags and the couple's housecleaning crew. When Fettig travels, Nikki camps out at her parents' house, which the Fettigs call "the spa." "He rules the house and gets special treatment there, with treats like tuna and watermelon," she says. "He races my dad to sit in Dad's chair, too." To have your pet -- including hamsters, snakes, horses, guinea pigs and the like -- considered for Collared, email information to --Kim Fernandez
Christopher T. Assaf, Baltimore Sun photo
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