Living with Carnivores

A vegetarian human's adventure with cats

Category: Brothers

Recovery Time

Corky the Banu bear came through his dental procedure just fine. The human collected him and brought him home for a rest. He’d had some teeth extracted, so no hard food for a week (and no roughhousing with his brother). That meant more alone time. Fortunately, he had medication that made him sleepy. Plus, he got lots of attention from the human.

Still, there was only so much incarceration time Corky was going to tolerate. The other cats would have to deal with eating crunchies in water for a few days. After his third dose of medication, Corky was free.

(c) Copyright 2022, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Images my own.

Return of the Bag Babies

The kitties had eaten their own breakfast and the human was eating hers. She noticed a takeout bag within reach and tossed it on the floor. Sure enough, Corky and Pepe came over to investigate. Pepe made it to the bag first and stuck his nose inside. <<<Potentially roomy enough to investigate.>>>

Initially Corky was also headed straight toward the bag, but got side tracked by Pepe’s bowl of breakfast. Of course, as soon as Corky paid attention to his food bowl, Pepe suddenly lost interest in the bag and prepared to move over and claim his property. <<<What’s mine is mine and what’s yours is mine. You have a problem with that?>>>

(c) Copyright 2022, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Images my own.

Corky Enjoys Plant Time for Kitties

Corky, who is usually shy and retiring — especially when his bossy larger but not older brother Pepe is around — occasionally cuts loose when there’s no one to see him. This time, fortunately, the human was nearby and equipped with her camera.

Since the Corkster had already been tossing a toy mouse around on the kitchen floor, the human figured he might enjoy some fresh greenery and ventured outside for a few leaves of Nepeta cataria (aka catnip or catmint).

Sure enough, the Banu Bear ate a few leaves, then began cuffing the remains of the plant top around on the floor.

The fact that no other cat was around to see him enjoy himself, and the human was quiet while snapping her shots, meant that Corky didn’t feel inhibited and had a grand time.

Eventually, he ate the last of the leaves and then just lay on the floor on his side with a slightly dazed look on his face. <<<Oh happy day!>>>

(c) Copyright 2022, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Images my own.

Afternoon Delight

Here are Mac, Corky, and Pepe enjoying an afternoon sun-soaked snooze. There was lots of paw dangling going on, but the human restrained herself and didn’t go near. Mac hasn’t figured out yet how to occupy both puffs at the same time, although she does hop between the two of them. Fortunately, at that moment, Corky was able to enjoy use of one of the fluffy beds as well.

(c) Copyright 2022, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Images my own.

When Box Inspection becomes a Family Affair

Sometimes, box inspection isn’t a solitary activity — even when it starts out that way.

Often, other cats wander over and decide to insert themselves into the middle of the action. Pepe rarely approves. <<<Amateurs!>>>

Of course, not every cat is as well trained and as professional about the inspection process. Some just take up space and don’t seem to know what to do. <<<Dilettantes!>>> Others have short attention spans and wander away. <<<Good riddance!>>>

Box inspection is always best left to the professionals.

(c) Copyright 2022, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Images my own.

Happy 7th Anniversary Corky & Pepe

The dynamic duo arrived at this house 7 years ago today. They definitely have stirred things up and kept things very interesting. Here they are chasing the laser dot amidst the pile of crackly papers, which are among their favorite playthings.

(c) Copyright 2022, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Images my own.

…Except Perhaps Piles of Crackly Paper!

The only “found” object that might be more fun to play with than a cardboard box is a pile of crackly packing paper….or a box stuffed with crackly paper.

Pepe, Corky, and even Mac have been having so much fun jumping into the growing pile of crackly paper and exploring.

Other than having a sniff to see where it’s been, the human has no idea why Pepe likes to stick his face into the paper.

Pepe’s technique for playing with the paper differs a bit from his brother or sister. He spins around and jumps on the pile, throwing paper this way and that. Corky likes to jump onto a piece and slide across the floor. And Mac likes it when the human sprinkles catnip on a sheet. She’ll flop down and roll back and forth until her fur is coated with the wildwood weed.

(c) Copyright 2022, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Images my own.

Brother Boys Watch the Snow Fall

<<<After the zoomies, what else is there to do on a cold dreary winter’s day?>>>

(c) Copyright 2022, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Images my own.

Brat Cat Takes all the Nippy for Herself

Mac has been outdoing herself lately. Apparently, she’s not into the generosity of the holiday season and is taking everything she can for herself.

Case in point: the human sprinkled catnip and silvervine on top of a sheet of crackly paper with which the cats had been playing. Mac immediately threw herself down on the sheet and started rolling all over the dried herbs.

Corky and Pepe wanted a sniff for themselves, but with Mac thrashing about with all of her sharp claws out, first Corky departed and then Pepe left. Brat Cat had it all to herself once again. And, no, she showed absolutely no remorse.

(c) Copyright 2021, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Images my own.

The Prisoners are Getting Restless

Mac and Pepe are healing up well from their little adventures on Tuesday and their pain meds have been dialed back accordingly. Pepe has been chasing a feather wand all over the bed, and Mac has been insistent on being held and cuddled while she attempts to do headstands in the human’s arms. With less medication keeping them subdued and sleepy, the prisoner cats, who have been isolated from the other two for three days, were starting to get bored and cranky. After clearing it with the vet’s office, and giving them their evening meds, the human set them free last night.

It was wonderous getting a really solid night’s sleep and not having to get up to check on them and dose them at odd hours, since their med schedules were a bit different. It also was sweet having all four cats taking turns cuddling with the human. (Corky and Fireball had spent a lot of time camped outside Pepe’s and Mac’s room this week wondering why they were in there.) At 4 am this morning, right about the time their evening meds would have been wearing off, the human awoke with Pepe on her chest and Mac on her head insisting they were hungry. Up popped the groggy human to dispense food, mix up meds, and dose her unwilling charges. Back for another couple of hours of sleep and then it was up for the day.

(c) Copyright 2021, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Images my own.

But Where are Pepe and Mac?

Yesterday, the evil human removed all food from the food dishes at 11:00 pm. Needless to say, the monsters protested every hour on the hour for the rest of the night. Although the human popped up bright and early, she still didn’t feed the monsters — a real change in the normal schedule. Turns out Pepe and Mac both had dental procedures scheduled this morning and the 2-legged was supposed to have both of them in at 7:30 am for pre-op tests. She managed to capture Pepe and put him in his carrier, but the wiley Smirky One evaded capture. After 15 minutes of coaxing and chasing, the human gave up and figured it was better to get one cat to the vet on time, so she left with a very upset Pepster. The human came home, found Mac’s new hiding spot, and set up a perimeter, then slowly got closer and closer. Finally, after many attempts at crawling under the bed only to have Mac pop out the other side, providence or Mac took pity on the frustrated human and Mac hopped onto the bed, ducked down in a kitty bed, and proceeded to hiss at her tormenter. The human picked her up and put her in the carrier and off they both went.

Before she left, the 2-legged did take pity on Corky and Fireball and put soft food and crunchies down for them. When she got home and came up to check on both boys, she found them cuddled in a kitty bed together enjoying comraderie and the heat of the far-infrared mattress pad (affectionately called the warm-warmy in this house). Clearly, they both wondered what happened to Mac and Pepe, who are going to need a couple of days to chill out after some teeth extractions. These poor kitties have been unfairly paired with the world’s worst human. It will be months before the 2-legged can walk up to either cat and not have them plotting their escape route just in case. On the bright side, the vet staff do courtesy nail trimming while the kitties are under, so at least that’s one thing the human won’t have to tackle for a few months.

(c) Copyright 2021, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Images my own.

Play Station

The cats have a new “toy” to play with. It’s a tall cardboard box that the human turned on its side and has filled with sheets of crackly paper. Pepe and Mac are especially prone to leaping into the box and smunching down the paper, although Corky will chase the laser dot or the fishing pole lure in there as well. When the human walks by and feels as though she’s being watched, a quick peek into the front of the box often reveals a pair of eyes looking out at her. Of course, in this house, the most successful toys are not the ones the human buys but rather the found ones or the ones the human makes of unneeded materials otherwise destined for the recycle bin.

(c) Copyright 2021, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Images my own.

A Recent Hit Toy

Not everything the human buys the kitties is a complete failure.

They’ve always loved laser pointers. However, the challenge with most of them is that they require a number of tiny batteries that cost more to replace than the laser pointer costs in the first place. The inexpensive laser pointer suddenly becomes far more costly, not to mention that they contribute toxic waste to landfills for those who have no way to recycle batteries locally.

The human recently found a great laser pointer that solves the problem by being rechargeable via a USB port hidden under a cap on one end. That makes the $10 USD laser pointer pay for itself by the second or third charge. Even better, this LED-based laser pointer has 2 additional settings that activate a flashlight, handy when stumbling around in the dark, and a blacklight, which is perfect for checking for urine (over)spray around litterboxes. Even better, the laser “dot” seems to be slight wider than that of previous laser pointers, and the kitties chase it day and night. In fact, this enrichment toy has proven so well loved that the human ended up purchasing a second one for upstairs as well as down.

(c) Copyright 2021, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Images my own.

A Leisurely Cat Fishing Session

Three of the felines were bored. They kept interrupting the human and her work. Finally, the 2-legged gave up and took a 15 minute break to play with the meows. The infamous (cat) fishing pole — arguably the most successful cat toy the human has ever purchased — came out and the kitties began to play.

First Caesar made a very energetic showing of chasing the little scrap of denim material at the end of the fishing line. So fast (and scary) is he when he’s jazzed up, that it requires both the human’s hands to keep from being run over or losing the entire pole to Caesar’s swatting paws and biting teeth (hence, no photos). However, his burst of energy depleted, the Big Guy laid down and watched Corky take over.

Corky, too, had a great time until big brother Pepe decided to get in on the action. At that point, the other two kitties looked away and the Pepster had the fishing pole all to himself. Eventually both 2-legged and 4-leggeds tired of all the action and retired to their respective corners.

(c) Copyright 2021, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Images my own.

Strategic Utilization of Sunlight

The human walked upstairs in the middle of the afternoon and spied one of the cats strategically positioned to enjoy a spot of sunlight. At first the human wasn’t even sure which cat it was.

As the two-legged drew closer, she thought she saw a pair of little white feet, indicating it was Corky.

Sure enough, it was the little Banu Bear, who appeared to be in a good mood and not intending on moving anywhere anytime soon. <<<Can’t a guy relax and enjoy a little peace in this house?>>>

(c) Copyright 2021, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Images my own.

Brothers

This is a sight you wouldn’t have seen 6 years ago: littermates Corky and Pepe laying next to each other. In their previous home, bully-boy Pepe never let Corky sit next to their humans or sleep on the bed with the 2-leggeds.

In this house, that behavior isn’t tolerated. And with 3 other cats to share space with, Pepe has mellowed considerably and Corky has come out of his shell.

(c) Copyright 2021, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Images my own.

Corky Helps with Blanket Making

<<<I really don’t understand why my brother makes such a big deal about these blankets.>>>

<<<The cuts seem straight enough to me.>>>

(c) Copyright 2021, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Images my own.

An Even Smaller Box

The human had a cute box she thought the brothers would enjoy checking out. She put it on the floor and waited to see what would happen.

No surprise, Pepe sniffed it over, then climbed in. Unfortunately, his brother was also curious and got fairly close to the box, which he still occupied.

<<<Do I really have to share with my brother?>>>

(c) Copyright 2021, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Images my own.