Saturday, December 14, 2013


Bob pursuing his favorite pastime

It's been a while since I posted a cat update, and since I'd been hospitalized for a while, one might wonder how the feline contingent of the New Poor Farm might be getting along.

I'm happy to report that both cats are going strong. It's good to remember that Bob is really not my cat - he's buddy Road Pig's, and as such, does not depend upon me for his sustenance. Bob does fare better when I'm around, because he is such a wimp around the community feed bowl next door and gets shoved aside by the wild bunch Road Pig feeds.

They like to hide out in the bushes and around the corner when I step out and feed Bob, and then when the coast is clear, sneak in and eat what I designated for him. My thinking is that they will deserve to be fed when they allow me to pet them like Bob does. Since this has not happened, often I have to stand guard so Bob gets what I give him.

You can imagine I get tired of this.

It occurred to me that one of the low velocity plastic pellet pistols might be pretty effective, so I purchased a 1911 styled pellet pusher (even branded by Colt) at Wally World. Often, I'll step out to chase one of the meaner denizens away, and they'll stop a few yards out and let me know in uncertain terms how unhappy they are with me. Before, I'd have to yell or act like I was gonna charge 'em. This got old.

Plugging 'em with the toy 1911 has proven quite effective. The effects seem to last a little while before they forget and get popped again. After I've hit 'em once, even if I miss afterwards, they get the idea and completely vacate the yard.

And since I have Kitsey, I quit feeding Bob cat treats. He gets the same food Kitsey does. It's a lot cheaper and far more nutritious, and sometimes if Kitsey got ahold of a package and destroyed it - the contents didn't agree with her. She's puke all over the house, numerous times. So, it's bye bye cat treats.

Speaking of Kitsey.....

Kitsey catching some much needed sleep on my legs in the recliner
Since I've gotten home, I've noticed my relationship with Kitsey has been altered considerably. Road Pig kept her fed, but he only fed her dry cat food. He didn't bother with the real canned tuna she gets from me every day - she is doled out a third of a can per day. Plus, I wasn't there on call to pet her when she darned well got around to it.

So, instead of jumping in my lap once or twice per day, she's advanced to working on being there a significant portion of the day. And she might stay for ten or fifteen minutes and leave before I was gone. Now she parks herself on my legs and sleeps there.

I'd say she noticed I was gone.

It's nice to be appreciated by one's cat. I felt like she barely tolerated me, which was really the case. Now? Much better. She still gets peeved at me - particularly when my bladder is heavily under the influence of the diuretics. She gets irritated when I wake her so I can vacate the chair and drain the main vein. I interrupted her nap. I should not be moving. I am not gonna wear a catheter to keep my cat happy with me - she'll just have to suffer, for she suffers horribly when she has to move unwillingly.

You might ask how Bob and Kitsey get along. I might even answer.

For his part, Bob is oblivious to Kitsey. He'll come marching in the front door, hanging around and kvetching about how the feeding process needs to be more on demand for him. Kitsey is just another thing in the house to him.

Kitsey, on the other hand, is deeply offended by Bob and his compadres. She starts hissing and growling immediately if not before, and when I step back in, she'll stand in my way. This does not fly with me - I need that floor space to walk, and she really hisses and bats at my legs when I try to toe her outta the way. It's a good thing (this time at least) that she is declawed on her front paws, or my shins would be shredded.

She also gets paranoid. Kitsey would put her nose in the crack of the door and just sit for a long time, keeping vigil. What is so funny about that is that it's really pretty rare that Bob or one of the feral cats might be out there. Generally, nothing is happening - no cats. Then, I'll look out when she's off asleep somewhere, and it's feral cat playground out there.

There is absolutely no connection between her suspicions and reality. Yes, the cats are out there, but she does not possess the skills to detect them reliably. Plus, I get tired of having to deal with her thinking she owns that piece of floor when I need to walk there. My solution?

She is not allowed to stand in the front door landing area at all anymore. That was a privilege, not a right. I pay the rent around here; that's my right. She's just an invited guest.

And with the training aids around here, remarkably she has learned the boundaries. Occasionally she forgets, but generally all I have to do is chide her.

So, human/feline relations seem to be fairly well ordered these days, which is a good thing as far as I'm concerned.


threecollie said...

If you have managed to train a cat anything, I bow down to you. I can't even keep them out of the milk house. Glad Kitsie has decided to make nice.

Jeffro said...

Forgot to add this to the post - I've got her to come to my lap if I call. I used to do that with Rooster (bless his little soul), but I was always chasing him away, and chirring at him was his signal to come on in. Which he did.

I've been trying it on Kitsey since I got her, but here lately, it actually works. Not immediately if not before as with Rooster, but if she's awake and hears me, she does come around.

Anonymous said...

Her hissing at the [supposedly] feral cats outside and at Bob:
I think she's demonstrating to you what a good defender she is. She should be rewarded for that!

and maybe, some day, she'll elevate herself to a dog status...

Jeffro said...

Yes, fearless defender off taking a nap while the feral cats run all over the front yard - that's pretty diligent! ;)

jed said...

This isn't the 1st case of heard of where previously aloof pet discovered a new appreciation for human company, after being deprived of such.

Cats can be trained. My mother certainly did it. Okay, so not to the same degree as a dog, but in some areas, yeah. My aquarium fish, not so much.

Glad that's all working better there now, Jeffro.

Anonymous said...

You can't expect her to sniff them through closed windows and across her sleep.
Maybe you should wake her up when they are out there and do a little demonstration with her nose to the glass: See, Kitsey, you missed a spot of enemy there. Now, attack!

Jeffro said...

(snicker) I think I'll pass on that idea - she just has no sense of humor about the whole thing, and the only thing she's attacked so far is my legs. Don't think I wanna pick her up and rub her nose in the situation!!!!

Jess said...

Cats appear as though they don't care. Maybe it's the feral instincts, but they still find solace in our company.

When they finally come to you, abd decide your lap is the best place for the moment, you realize they've accepted you and honor you with their attention.

That's a good thing.

Dad Bones said...

20 sec cat fail vid.