Posted Online: Jan. 27, 2013, 6:50 pm

If Packer's meowing, Betty's on her way over

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By Betty Carlson

Photo: Submitted
Betty Carlson, who lives in Hampton, is friends with Packer, who belongs to her neighbors, Pam and Marc Jacques.
Quad-Citians show off their pets in Creature Feature, appearing Sundays on the Your Pets page and Mondays on the Neighbors page. This story was submitted by Betty Carlson, of Hampton. If you want to share your pet's story, email your submission to features@qconline.com and attach a photo in JPEG form. Or, send a story and photo via regular mail to Creature Feature, Features Department, The Dispatch/The Rock Island Argus, 1720 5th Ave., Moline, IL 61265.

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Hello, my name is Betty Carlson. I would like to tell you about my special friend. No, it is not a person. It is a cat called Packer.

Packer belongs to our neighbors and friends, Pam and Marc Jacques. He turned 20 years old in November, and is part Maine coon cat.

He was a kitten when the Jacques got him. When they went to pick him up, he was lying on top of a big dog, asleep. Packer does not like other cats but gets along fine with big dogs. We are convinced Packer thinks he is a dog.

My husband and I moved in across the street from Pam and Marc more than 18 years ago. Packer would come across the street to see me. Well, it wasn't very long until we became very good friends.

I bought him "crunchies" and would go home with him to give him the treat. If he happened to be outside and saw me out, or saw our car pull into the garage, he would come over. I would visit with him, and when he decided to go home, he would start walking that way, but would look back to see if I was coming along. If I wasn't, he would sit down and wait for me to catch up with him. Then he would start following me like a dog.

Sometimes if Packer is outside and he sees me, he will walk down his driveway and sit down at the end and wait for me to come over to his house. If I don't start walking that way, he will come into the street and sit in the middle of the street waiting on me. I will go over and take him into the house and give him a treat.

Once in a while, Pam and Marc will go someplace and stay overnight, and I will take care of Packer. I will feed him and see that he has water, and let him outside. I will stand outside watching him, and he will look back every once in a while to see if I am still there.I will also go over and stay with him for a bit so he won't get lonesome while they are gone.

Packer is not much of a lap cat. He will come over and bump your leg, and sometimes that means he wants something to eat. I spoil him and feed him Fancy Feast. He loves that.

Packer likes to sit at the front door and look out. If he sees me starting across the street to his house, he will start meowing really loudly. Pam and Marc know that means Betty is coming over.