Kitties

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I have two cats, ages 11 and 7, who have been gleefully clawing my furniture for as long as they could reach it. Me, I'd given up and just taken to covering the furniture with colorful throws. It's not like the furniture is more important than the cats, after all.

They had a standard scratching post that they liked well enough. They were praised highly each time they used it. But it was only a supplement for their main course--furniture and carpets.

About eight months ago I bought them a Cosmic Catnip Alpine Scratcher (a good picture) because I thought they'd enjoy it. I used the catnip to introduce them to it, and they more than liked it--they *loved* it (hee--even after the catnip was gone, I swear!). Now here it is, eight months later, and I suddenly realized that they haven't scratched anything but that scratcher for ages. They love the cardboard, and they especially love the angle--they like to turn around and scratch it from the top. It's lasted well, as we just now turned over the first cardboard block that came with it. I imagine we'll need a new block about once a year.

The only drawback to this beauty is that the cats do throw bits of shredded cardboard about, but it's not a horrible mess. We just vaccuum it up.

I imagine any cardboard-type scratcher placed at the right angle would work. I gotta say, I'm floored that they love it enough to leave the furniture alone, and I'm looking forward to getting a new couch soon!

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She still loves me. She still comes to me for affection (when there's no alternative), and guards me when I shower, and looks at me with big, adoring eyes.

But she loves him more.

The small cat is officially a "daddy's girl". When Bill and I are sitting side by side, she will gravitate to his lap. Oh, she'll get up once in a while and slink over to me...then turn right around and go back to him. And let's face it, he's a big ole sucker for it.

I take solace in the fact that the large cat hates him.

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There is no love lost between my cats. Observe:

Rreow, dammit!

Because of this, I have to feed them on opposite ends of the kitchen. The routine: Put the first dish down, have both cats go for it, grab the second dish and the smaller cat and put them both down at the other end of the floor. To sweeten the deal, I pet the smaller cat a little as I put her in front of her dish. The bigger cat realized this. Now when I put the other cat down, she just stands there waiting at her dish until I pet her too.

My cats: as weird as they wanna be.

Silly song for my cat, courtesy of looking at my page too early in the morning:

This is the cat that never ends
She just goes on and on my friend
Some people started petting her, not knowing what she was
And they'll continue petting her forever just because

This is the cat that never ends...

Kitty Bacchanal

I awoke to find cat toys in the tub, and in the bathroom sink. In the kitchen, one cat dish had been shoved to the middle of the floor, and cat food was strewn everywhere.

All this because I left the blinds down and blocked their favorite windowsill. Hell hath no fury like a kitty scorned.

Part 1: Nicknames

Cats aren't very bright. There is no shame in admitting this quietly to yourself; however, when friends arrive cat owners must devise a number of clever ways of disguising the fact that they live with a lint-brained sack of fur. One of these methods involves nicknames. It's vital to call your cat by a different name every time you address her. The longer the better. "Snoojee woojee boogumsis", "sweet fluffity muffity", and "kitty witty sooper mooper furfity girl" are all good examples of long names that will confuse your cat. Not that it matters. Cats do not come when called. They do not understand that they have been given a name for this purpose. When called, they may stare at the sound of your voice, but little else is likely. Therefore it's important that you use alternate names in front of your friends to construct an excuse. Of course Kitty doesn't come when I call her. I've been a bad trainer. I never use her name.

Part 2: Discipline at a Distance

You, the cat owner, are comfortably entrenched in your favorite position on the couch. She, the cat, is getting up on the counter like a Bad, Bad Kitty. There are several actions you can take:

  • Keep small projectiles handy. Throw them in the general direction of your cat. Do not throw food, as this will only encourage your cat.

  • Hiss. Hissing is the sound mother cats make when they're having a bad day and kitten has asked for a cookie twelve times.
  • Act like you're getting up. You should only have to get up about halfway (though this is admittedly inconvenient) before your cat responds.

The least effective method is yelling. Your cat, while dumb as a box of doorknobs, still realizes that words cannot hurt her. She wonders why you think they do. Of course, none of these methods work while you are out of the area. While you are gone, your cat will do whatever she damned well pleases. If you don't want her getting into something, store it off-site in a safe-deposit box.