Living with Carnivores

A vegetarian human's adventure with cats

Month: June, 2014

Big Guy Hides Out

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After his paw-dangling session yesterday morning on top of the kitty condo, I chanced to glance into the second level of the kitty condo as I was picking up toys and found the Big Guy hiding out.  He doesn’t look too happy to have been discovered.  Ah, well, if it’s not the human finding him, it’s the little kitties following him into his secret cave.

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(c) Copyright 2014, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

Paw Dangling from the Top of the Kitty Condo

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Caught in action this morning…


(c) Copyright 2014, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

En Fois Encore! Return of Pink Mousie

photo 1Well, after a several-week hiatus, pink mousie with the purple string made a reappearance. Not surprisingly, the toy was found once again wrapped around the bottom of one of the kitchen chairs.  I’m not quite sure where pink mousie hides when not dangling from the furniture, but clearly this toy has become a favorite of the meows and must be put somewhere safe between its adventures.


(c) Copyright 2014, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

Big Guy Enjoys Catnip

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Here’s a photo from this morning showing the aftermath of a party enjoyed solely by Caesar with 2 big clumps of fresh organic catnip from my yard.  Doesn’t he looks  mellow and content?


(c) Copyright 2014, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

Tail Chaser

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Yes, that’s the Merkitty acting like an out-of-control teen. She just can’t help but chase Caesar’s tail, and he seems unable to stop it from twitching. The more she cuffs at it, the faster it goes.  The faster it goes, the more enthusiastically she chases it — that is until she manages to stick tooth and claw into Caesar’s sensitive hinter parts. He then stands up, pulls up one of those big Caesar paws as though he’s going to pop her, thinks better of it, and puts his paw down with a huff. He usually then departs from the scene of the tail chasing. She is such a little minx!

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(c) Copyright 2014, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

Tiger Boys Hold Paws


Tiger Boys decided to provide bed-making help one morning as I stripped my bed to change the sheets.  At first they were just lying next to each other.


Then Fireball stretched his paw over and placed it on top of one of Caesar’s paws.  Being the good daddy cat that he is, Caesar decided to groom Fireball’s paw.  Then they just left their paws that way.  Awwww.


Needless to say, interludes such as these make it hard to stay focused on the job at hand, which is to change the bed. Fortunately, I’ve learned to keep the camera handy.


(c) Copyright 2014, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

Tiny Bells


Not long after the kitties arrived, I purchased 3 of the cutest cat collars for them.  They were the safe breakaway versions that cats can get out of if they get hung up on something…like their own paws.  And each of the collars had a tiny little bell. I’d used the same kinds of collars for decades with two previous families of kitties, replete with a little ID tag so if they ever got out, someone would know whom to call to report that they’d turned up.  Confidentially I unpackaged each collar and went in search of the kitties.  I only managed to get a single collar on a single cat. You’re seeing one of the extremely rare pictures of Mac wearing her pretty collar.

Interestingly, because every time Mac moved, the collar jingled a bit, the Tiger Boys very quickly grew afraid and would run when they saw her coming, jingling along the way.  Mac did manage to stay in her collar for 2 weeks, but I guess she grew tired of being shunned by the far more timid Tiger Boys. Eventually she popped her collar off and I didn’t put it back on.  I thought I would take the bells off and give the collars another chance, but I never got around to it, and they have since disappeared to who knows where.  In the meantime, every cat toy I’ve brought home that contained a tiny tinkling bell has terrified the cats. They absolutely positively won’t play with it and if I toss it on the floor, they run to the 4 corners of the room and hide under some kind of furniture.


(c) Copyright 2014, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

Looking Gorgeous Anywhere you Sit


How is it that cats always look so elegant and beautiful, even when a bit rumpled right out of sleep?  Truly they are a gorgeous species and a fascinating one too. If you’re a human lower lifeform, but you manage to gain the respect of a cat, even if for a brief time, you can consider yourself having lived a successful life.


(c) Copyright 2014, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

Goo Goo’s Grand Adventure

IMG_0576Well, Mac, the Goo Goo Girl, had another fine adventure yesterday.

It started off hot and humid, so I had the door that leads from my living room onto my porch opened up to try and cool off the house and dissipate a bit of the humidity.  Since the porch is screened-in floor to ceiling with a double layer of hardware cloth and galvanized fence wire, there’s no way for the cats to get out or for other critters to get inside. However, because I have landscaping beside the porch, the cats have access to fresh air and nature sounds.  They love to crouch in the shadow of trees and big shrubs while they track the progress of squirrels, chipmunks, birds, and other creatures through my yard.  Screening in the porch was my father’s idea  last time he visited in 2000 or 2001 and it has proven a fabulous gift for my previous cats and my current crew.

Mac of course went outside to have her “outdoor” adventure on the porch.

Later in the day, a big thunderstorm came up, so I shut up the porch door and went upstairs to visit with the kitties.

It was only late that evening after I’d been in bed trying to fall asleep for a while that I realized I hadn’t see Mac in many hours. I went out on the porch in the dark and called and called. Being a minx, she of course gave no indication she was out there. I did the same thing with the cellar, but no response there either. Finally, I went and fetched a flashlight and trundled out to see if I could find here. Sure enough, there she lay in a big block of foamed styrene that sits inside a plastic bag and creates just the perfect little cubby for her to stretch out in.

Now when Mac has been off on her own “hunting” for a while, she quickly reverts back to “wild kitty” mode.  She hissed at me as I retrieved her and brought her in the house, shutting the door behind me.  And because I had interrupted her grand adventure, I got no kitty hugs or bed-side visits the entire night. (On the other hand, she missed her evening snack with the Tiger Boys, so maybe we’re even.)

This morning, she was quite chirpy and cuddly again. I guess her feral phase has passed. She seems to be catching up on her sleep today.

Oh, and dare I mention that we’ve had very little splashing from the water bowl this week?

(c) Copyright 2014, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

Tiger Boys Play Tag


The Tiger Boys had a feisty go at a toy mouse tied to a long, coarse string the other day.  While Fireball would attack the mouse every time it moved, Caesar was busy pouncing on the string at the other end.  Eventually one of them would pick up their end of the contraption and go trotting off to another room, dragging the other end and their “brother” along with it. That led to multiple rounds of toy tag and dashing about with string or toy in mouth to yet another room.



(c) Copyright 2014, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

The Hazards of Paw Dangling


As we’ve noted in the past, Caesar the Tiger Bear loves to dangle his big soft paws out of his beds, the kitty condos, off the couches, and off chairs.  He nearly always has at least one paw extended and catching a breeze.  The only problem is that when the human walks by and sees those big soft paws within reach, she is instantly compelled to go touch them.


That does not please the Big Guy.  He doesn’t appreciate having his tender toes massaged or his paws petted.  When he sees her coming, there is usually a rapid withdrawal of paws under chest.  There also often is a special “scowl” that he adopts in anticipation of something unpleasant.  Hmmm…..

(c) Copyright 2014, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

Spin Class

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A popular sport among humans these days is the Spinning®-brand indoor cycling class.

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Well, there are regularly spinning classes on the stairs of this house.

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Mac the Merkitty is especially fond of chasing toy mice around and around in circles on the stairs, as you can see from these images.

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In fact, once she gets going, she clears the stairs of any other cats.

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How she manages to spin around and around and not fall down the stairs or regurgitate her last meal is beyond my ken.  Then again, she is the Merkitty.


(c) Copyright 2014, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

Kitty Weights

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In the old days, humans fashioned fancy objects out of metal and glass and used them to hold papers down so they didn’t blow away in a breeze — the challenge of needing to keep windows open most of the year to regulate building temperatures.

My cats have their own version of paperweights.  They climb on top of the recumbent (and often sleeping) human and flop down. Maybe they think of their person as something akin to a lumpy piece of furniture.  Or maybe they think that if they don’t hold her down flat, she’ll decide to get up and go somewhere else. Then where would they find a soft, warm, comfortable perch on which to lay?

(Hard to put this shot into perspective, but it’s Fireball and Macaroni on top of my throat and chest first thing in the morning.  Not so easy to breathe, particularly since when they’re this close it means cat fur is getting into my eyes, ears, nose, and mouth, but you can’t beat the purr songs and the head rollies first thing in the morning.)


(c) Copyright 2014, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

The Juvenile Delinquent

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Macaroni (aka the Merkitty, Splashasaurus, etc.) has had a grand week.

She’s chased Caesar’s tail almost every night, making him hopping mad.  She’s even tried chasing Fireball’s tail, which he normally keeps curled against his side.

She’s thrown water out of the water bowl and flooded the floor multiple times each day.

My friend, who had had the idea to use a dish-drying pad under the water bowl to soak up effluent, actually bought a very pretty pad and we installed it.  I found it completely soaked the next morning and water covering the floor around the pad.

Last night, a new, smaller pad was tried. This morning, as you can see from the picture, it was found pulled nearly 90 degrees off the placemat — quite a feat given how heavy the bowls and frame are.   And, of course, the pad and the floor were soaked.

The little juvenile delinquent has even been seen climbing up onto the frame that holds the elevated water bowl, so she can get better leverage for scooping out water.

Ah, will the human ever survive the teen years?


(c) Copyright 2014, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

Takin’ a Trip without Leavin’ the Farm…

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There used to be a funny song when I was young extolling the virtues of “the wildwood weed.”  I think  the same thing can be said of catnip.  All my previous kitties were big aficionados of cat mint — so much so that I used to buy it in 1-pound tubs. Many of the previous crew were known for being able to figure out where the white plastic container resided on a shelf. They’d climb up and knock it down, then set to work on it. While they never did figure out how to get the tight-fighting plastic lid off, when I’d get home there would be chew marks all over the container (which did nothing for keeping the stuff fresh).  Interestingly, that group much preferred dried to fresh or frozen.

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When this crew arrived, they weren’t all that interested in catnip — unless it was the super-potent kind in certain cat toys.  The tiger boys eventually became big fans, but the Merkitty has only recently come to appreciate the benefits of “takin’ a trip without leavin’ the farm.”   Those green blurs are fresh leaves from my garden (picked only a few minutes before) that she hasn’t yet consumed or flattened by rolling on them.

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Well, at least her feet were dry for a few minutes today… Happy Merkitty!


(c) Copyright 2014, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.



MY Brother!

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Little Fireball being protectively cuddled by his “big brother,” Caesar Tiger Bear, who once again has some paw-dangling action going on here.  Can we have a big awwwwwww?


(c) Copyright 2014, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos courtesy G. Karan.

I had Bed-Making Help then too…

Isis watchingIt seems that as far back as I can recall having cohabited with felines, they’ve always been more than willing to help me make my bed, or to flop down and allow themselves to be made into a bed.  Here’s little 3-legged Isis getting into the groove.

Isis tucked in


(c) Copyright 2014, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

Merkitty Catches a Spot of Sunshine

photo 1Just so you don’t think this is a creature solely of darkness and water, she also thrives in air and light. Here she is relaxing in one of her favorite kitty beds next to my bed and overlooking the front drive. This way she can keep tabs on many areas of “her” house and yard at the same time, while being kept in the luxury to which she is accustomed.

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She does look pleased with herself, doesn’t she?  I’ve learned to always check those front paws…which often are found to be suspiciously WET.


(c) Copyright 2014, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

Elevated Water-Bowl Wrangling

photo 5Some may be wondering just how the new elevated water bowl is working out. Well, I can assure you that the Merkitty is splashing happily away.  I have adapted by placing 3 pop-up cellulose sponges under the bowl and stand to catch most of the errant spray.  A friend has suggested one of those large dish-drying pads. At first I didn’t think it was a good idea, as Splashasaurus has previously pulled the corner of a towel I’ve laid under her bowl up, over, and into the bowl. (It makes so much extra mess for the human…)  However, I’m warming to the idea as she continues to toss water around…I don’t have enough sponges to cover the surface area I need.

By the way, note the spec of something in the bottom of the bowl? Not sure if that’s kitty food accidentally carried over from the other bowl, or something from a splashy paw.  No sooner do I get the bowl washed and refilled each morning than there is a nice sound of paws hitting water. Rrrrr.

And see the nice crunchies in the second bowl? Those rectangular pieces are roasted chicken with greens.  No grain.  All natural.  I note that the kitties very precisely pick those pieces up and drop them on the placemat beside the bowl. Clearly they don’t approve of this new snack. Double RRRR.


(c) Copyright 2014, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

Unexpected Gifts

photo 2Well, I awoke this morning to the Little Red Bee chirping away at me while racing up and down my body. It’s Sunday, I silently groaned. Let me have another 30 minutes to sleep. It’s daylight he chirped. Come down and play with me and give me something yummy to eat.   We compromised on 15 minutes. When I got ready to leave my bedroom, I was greeted with a pink mouse tucked right up next to my comfy old moccasins. Such thoughtful cats, giving me something to play with right after I got up. photo 1 When I got downstairs, I found that the much more famous pink mousey with the purple string was once again wrapped around a chair leg — for the third time in 5 days. (For those who check such things, note the different winding pattern.)  And to my great surprise, there sat a pump red mango I’d picked up at the store last night sitting not far away…on the floor…when I’d left it in a bowl…up on the kitchen table. Someone clearly has been exploring. RRRR  Or, perhaps I’m reading this wrong: they were trying to feed pink mousey, who was miserable (and hungry) hanging there in captivity…  What was the name of that famous river in Egypt? Ah, yes, de-nial.


(c) Copyright 2014, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.