Living with Carnivores

A vegetarian human's adventure with cats

Month: January, 2015

Land of the Lost

IMG_2227Wow, the kitties’ toy box is overflowing today.

Last night the human was getting them some snacks at the pet-food store and found some soft-bite mice in metallic and fluorescent colors on clearance, so of course she picked 3 up.  It didn’t take Mac more than 5 minutes to lose the first one.

This morning as we were playing in the kitchen, I retrieved the other 2 new mice and Caesar and Mac knocked them around on the floor while I ate my breakfast.

Fireball was on the floor behind me doing his usual excavation work under the stove. He lays on his side, braces his back feet on the stove drawer, and sticks his front feet under trying to find something. Since I still had the fishing pole nearby from the cats’ play time, I got down on hands and knees and used the long pole to see if there was anything under the stove.  Sure enough, in 5 minutes’ time, I had a whole stash of 24 toy mice and a crackly ball. I even found one of the mostly-delaminated “shakey” mice that definitely has seen better days. Needless to say, the dusty toys have been vacuumed and deposited in the toy box, which is really quite full now.  No wonder their toy mice supply had been so low just a few months’ back. Glad the Baby Comet pointed me to the land of the lost.

 

(c) Copyright 2015, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

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New Kitty Toy Box

IMG_2215_lrFor the first year they were here, the kitties’ toys were tucked into the kitty condos or placed on soft blankets where they slept.

During year 2, the human thought it might be a good idea to collect the growing stash of toy mice in some kind of container lest she trip on them and take a plunge down the stairs.  Since the toys didn’t last more than a couple of weeks before they were lost, she only had to house a few of the more bedraggled or undesirable ones, so a plastic container worked just fine, aesthetics aside.

However, with the recovery of a big stash of toy mice a few months back and the extra ones they got from Sandy Claws over the holidays, the toy collection was really starting to overflow the plastic container. The human recalled a holiday gift she’d received a few years back that was held in a cute little wooden box, so she went searching for it.  The new box is just about as long as a stair tread is deep, so is a perfect fit on the stairs. And since it’s more roomy than the previous container, now a good collection of the popular and unpopular toys can be contained neatly in one place, although not for very long.

IMG_2216_lrOf course, one of the delights of early morning is the walk from the upstairs bedroom, along the hallway, down the stairs, and into the living room, as then the human gets to see which of the toys went out for a stroll the night before.  There are often 3 or 4 of them in various places on the stairs, 1 or 2 in the upstairs hallway, and then another couple in various spots in the living room.    Often there will be a trio of toys outside the office so the human can take a break and play a bit instead of work, work, work.  Such nice kitties to share their toys.

 

(c) Copyright 2015, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

Kitty Archaeologists

IMG_2182Okay, so at their last checkups, both Caesar and Mac were given an ultimatum — or rather their human was — that they had to take off a few pounds. Mac has about 1.5 pounds to lose, and the Big Guy has at least 3.5 to take off.  Alas, to get flesh on Fireball’s skinny frame, I let the others nosh a bit too much.  So no more bottomless bowls of crunchies upstairs and down.  Needless to say, mealtime has become a much bigger deal as what they don’t eat in 30 minutes or so goes back into the refrigerator for the next 12 hours. This has been going on for several weeks already, not that I can tell if anyone has become more svelte. Time will tell I guess.

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Lest you think crunchy privation is going over well…it’s not.  Whereas before the kitties were quite messy about how they ate their crunchies, grabbing a mouthful from the bowl, backing up, dropping the tidbits on the floor, and eating them there, often leaving lots of extras around just so the human’s vacuum felt like it had a raison d’être, now there is a concerted effort to clean every last bit up. Sometimes, in the quest for stray bits, they end up hooking the absorbent dish-drying pad under the water and crunchy bowls and pulling it around in the other direction to see what they can find underneath. The other night as I went upstairs to prepare for bed, I found the upstairs water and crunchy bowls completely turned upside down on the floor, which was soaked (along with the rug) with water — a recreation of which is shown above. Clearly some ambitious excavation work had been underway. Who knew I lived with kitty archaeologists?

 

(c) Copyright 2015, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

Oh, Yes, the Floor’s Still Getting Flooded

IMG_2105The human is way behind posting photos and stories, but for those who have asked (and even those who have wondered but haven’t asked), alas, the Merkitty is still flooding the floor every day — and on both levels of the house now.  She’s been having all sorts of fun flooding the floors around two water bowls not just one.  (Note how far she tosses water away from the elevated water bowl! It’s a wonder my laminate floor hasn’t delaminated completely.) IMG_2104

If I thought cats could drink out of the bottles with sipping tubes you use for rabbits and hamsters and gerbils, I’d be sorely tempted to try one out.  But knowing my girl, she’d find a way to push in the ball bearing and flood the floor with one of those containers as well.  I guess there’s no escaping unless I resort to a kiddy swimming pool for my kitty.  Argh!

 

(c) Copyright 2015, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

Who’s Stealing Whose Heat?

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It’s been a lot colder out in the last few days and we finally got a bit of snow that seems like it’s going to hang around.  Three-to-four times per night, my pillow pal has been coming in and demanding a spot under my covers, against my side, and draped over my arms. He’s also had the “snow sillies” with lots of late night and early morning sessions of noisy cavorting with toy mice on the stairs. Often, he’ll take his toy and bring it up onto the bed and chase it around on top of me (thank you very much!).  He was so jazzed up on New Year’s early morning that I awoke to the distinctive sound of him banging on the wind chimes that hang over the Newel post at the end of the hall. However, for all his animation when he’s up running around, once you get him settled down and tucked in under the covers — whether in one of the kitty beds or in my bed proper — the little guy doesn’t want to move. He gets that funny scrunched up sleepy face and only comes out from under the fuzzy blankets when food is about to be served.  Can’t say that I blame him!

 

(c) Copyright 2015, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

And from their Cousin, a Great Chasing Toy

IMG_2157The kitties’ cousin in Massachusetts sent them a great chasing toy. It’s a small piece of furry-looking fabric rolled and sewn together that has feathers (yes, feathers, Fireball’s favorites) and thin strips of raffia ribbon coming out one end, and a string with a plastic ring exiting the other end.

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The string and ring are just perfect to allow the silly human to spin the toy around. Even the Big Guy gets into the act with this toy. I’d say it’s clearly their favorite at the moment.

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Here’s a sequence of shots as Mac checks the toy out on its first adventure. She clearly has a great time with it (note how she’s curling up her lip and “laughing” after sniffing it?).

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After a few minutes of watching her roll around on the floor with it, Caesar stopped by to see what all the fuss was about.

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(c) Copyright 2015, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

Gifts from Sandy Claws

IMG_2167Well, the kitties were good this year — flooded floors aside — so Sandy Claws (the cat version of Santa Claus) stopped by with a new scratching box that has sides.  The so-called Scratch Lounge has quickly become the favorite new scratching area in the house (yeah) so I guess it can be considered a success.  Here’s Fireball taking a rest after having a good scratch while the Big Guy looks on from nearby.

Although the Scratch Lounge has since been relocated elsewhere in the house, they continue to play on it and scratch with abandon.  I’ve even found a couple of toy mice inside the lounge that must have come along for the ride.

If you want to have a good New Year’s laugh, see the company’s video where “big cats” at a rescue organization try out the Scratch Lounge. There’s even a super-sized version for a 200-pound mountain lion.

 

(c) Copyright 2015, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.