I spent a lovely day visiting three historic homes on the James River in Virginia. Unlike most historic house museums I tour, the Shirley, Berkeley, and Westover Plantations have areas that are closed to the public because the owners live there. There's definitely more a feel of home about these houses: portraits of previous residents up through the current day, furnishings that appear comfortable as well as historically accurate, bicycles on the lawn, wandering cats.
I was particularly taken with the Shirley Plantation's elderly cats, Tunnah and Sugar, both thought to be about 12 years old. Sugar greeted visitors to the gift shop but didn't move far from her rug. (I think she just likes the rug and wishes the people would stay away.)
Tunnah was lounging in the shadows of the kitchen building. When I paused to get a picture, she took that as an offer of petting, making it very difficult to snap a picture. Here is one of several shots where we were working at cross purposes: me trying to get a picture, her trying to get petted.
Finally, we both managed to get what we wanted.
There's also a small dog in the house, but I was unable to get a picture of him as he followed his mistress onto the family floors. I personally cannot imagine living in a house with daily tours. Not only having the tour areas public ready, but also having to be personally public ready when entering and exiting. I'm glad some people can.