Living with Carnivores

A vegetarian human's adventure with cats

Category: Unexpected Gifts


It’s the human’s fault.  She was trying to add variety and hunting opportunities to the kitties’ daily repertoire.  The meows were pestering for snacks, so the 2-legged flipped the much-beloved scratching disc upside down. On the reverse side, there is a maze-like structure with a ball inside — yes, a ball with a bell! — and a series of interesting holes on top that are just the perfect size for kitty paws to explore.To entice the kitties to investigate the holes, the human put a small pile of dried organic catnip on top and then carefully — while the felines were watching — nudged raw freeze-dried meat snacks from the surface of the maze into the holes.  The kitties watched with fascination and even went over and looked inside the structure. The Merkitty hopped up, took a sniff of the ‘nip, and immediately was overcome with paroxysms of delight.  The other cats had to move back or risk getting hit by her flailing limbs and rolling body.  As she thrashed about, she would bat the ball that rolls along the track on the outside of the toy sending it spinning around the track.  Pretty quickly, she cleared the deck of other cats. Over a period of several days, the human added more snacks and more ‘nip to the surface, but she never saw a single kitty paw raised to explore.  Eventually, she fished out the snacks and turned the disc back over so the scratching surface was face up. Some hunters they are!


(c) Copyright 2018, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.



As you can see from the overturned cat scratcher, the blue mice have made an exodus from the center of the structure. However, they didn’t go very far and they stayed lined up fairly nicely.



(c) Copyright 2018, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

Corky vs. the Orange Mouse

The human was cranking away at work the other day when she heard that distinctive moaning sound in the next room that always indicates one of the cats has “killed” a toy mouse and brought it to the human for praise and admiration.  Interestingly, the human found Corky and the orange felt mouse.  To show the human his hunting skills, the Corkster cuffed the mouse around a bit while the human poured on the compliments.  Hearing the human talking, Macaroni came over to see if anyone was getting fed. No one was, but she then inserted herself into the middle of Corky and his mouse. He gave her a sniff, but otherwise disgusted, he walked away.



(c) Copyright 2018, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

Make Your Own Entertainment

Several days in a row the human walked into the other bedroom and found a cardboard cat scratching box (which is shaped like a cube with the center cut out) lying on its side instead of standing on an end.She thought that maybe one of the kitties had used it like a step stool to climb up or down from the bed in that room so, being a well-trained human, she turned it up on its side again. After three mornings in a row of tilting it back up, the 2-legged noticed a toy mouse in the center of the overturned cat scratcher. That made her think the kitties were inventing their own games, so she went around the upstairs and picked up the multitude of toy mice that had been dragged out of the toy boxes on the stairs and strewn around during the night.  She placed all the mice in the center of the scratching box and left it on its side. Each evening she’d return to look at the overturned scratcher and would usually find most of the mice had been removed and taken elsewhere.  She’d go around and collect them again and refill the space, then check to see what was there come morning.  As you can see, the number of toys keeps increasing, and the cats have started scratching on the front face of the box — a surface not meant to be scratched….much like the hand-knotted rug on which it sits. <<Sigh. Within 10 square feet of this rug, there are no less than 5 hanging and standing cat scratchers. I guess they prefer wool to cardboard or sisal.>>


(c) Copyright 2018, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

The Human’s Cooking Skills

The human found this interesting surprise in a food bowl the other day. Do you think the cats are commenting on her cooking skills, or at least on the food she offered that morning?  They do leave their toy mice in the darnedest places.


(c) Copyright 2018, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.


<<Sure, I’m not supposed to get on the table, but you put the pen cap within easy reach. You’re just tempting me.>><<And if I decide to knock it off the table and chase it around the kitchen floor until I lose it, well that really just constitutes entrapment, since you planted it in front of me where you knew I couldn’t resist.>>



(c) Copyright 2018, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

Happy 6th Anniversary, Trio!

Today is the 6th anniversary of the arrival of Caesar, Macaroni, and Fireball to the human’s abode…which quickly became the kitties’ abode, although they generously allowed the human to keep living here.

The human adores the Trio. They are sweet, playful, and cuddly — with each other, with the Duo, and with the 2-legged — although even after 6 years, they are still fairly skittish if the human is standing or walking around (sitting and laying down seem to render her more “kitty sized” and therefore far less scary). Sadly, I guess they will never fully outgrow that.

Many thanks to Kim and family for surrendering 3 of her foster kitties in one fell swoop.  Life these last 6 years would have been a whole lot darker and more difficult without all the love and laughter these kitties bring. It’s been so much fun watching their personalities evolve.  What a gift it is to have furry friends in your life.


(c) Copyright 2018, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

Self-Serve Cookies

Since the morning snack is one of the highlights of both the 4-legged and 2-legged people’s day, the human tried an experiment.First she took the lid off the kitties’ snack container (aka cookie jar), then stood back to see what would happen. Many noses (followed by kitty bodies) moved over to sniff at the interesting object.Next, the human tipped the container on its side to see what they would do.  She figured the three biggest snack monsters — Caesar, Mac, and Corky — would soon help themselves. At first everyone sat around looking at this unprecedented situation.  <<Is this for real? Can we really go fishing for our own cookies?>>Corky, always up for a game involving food, stuck his paw into the container and soon hooked a snack, flipped it out, and started eating it off the rug.  
Mac was fascinated and Pepe was right there watching his brother.  Initially Caesar appeared disinterested, but he soon got involved in the goings on. Fireball moved back to sit by a chair. Perhaps he thought it was a trap.  <<No way the 2-legged will let us eat all the snacks we want. She’s being a tricky human again.>>At first Corky was unstoppable, but then Pepe muscled in and started digging for yummies too.Interestingly, no member of the Trio reached in and helped themselves, although Miss Mac got mighty close. <<First time for everything!>> The same cannot be said for the Duo, who got busy pulling snacks out and eating them. Well, the human watched and took pictures for many minutes. The two brave kitties got a fistful of snacks. The others were given a few snacks handpicked by the human. All in all, an interesting experiment for one and all.


(c) Copyright 2018, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

Goofy Girl & the Spin Cycle

We’ve once again had crazy ups and downs in temperature here and the last three nights we got snow — not a huge amount, but enough that the kitties got snow sillies out of it.Case in point: the Goofy Girl got all sillied up.  First she got into one of the kitty beds and started kicking around an adorable little felted toy.  Next she spun in circles chasing it around on her paws. You’d think she was in the spin cycle of a washing machine.Then she flipped upside down and gave it backfoot furnippies. And while she was kicking and biting the toy, she looked back and reached a fore paw over and bopped poor Fireball on the head. He was sitting in an adjacent kitty bed watching her antics.  She alternated kicking the toy and harassing her brother until she tired of her silliness and got up. Next she chased Fireball out of his bed, then she got into a flurry of fistacuffs with Big Caesar. Then she flew off the bed and went looking for a toy mouse to chase up and down the stairs. We could hear her making that funny moaning sound the kitties make when they’re carrying around a big “kill” (toy mouse) they’ve just vanquished. All of a sudden, Goofy Girl came flying through the air again and landed back in bed and began bothering Caesar and Fireball again, who’d returned to their soft warm beds when the little minx vanished. On and on they went for hours last night.  Of course, as soon as the human brought out the evil camera and started taking shots, Macadoodle got embarrassed she’d been caught being silly and began some gratuitous grooming. Mustn’t let humans see you being other than dignified….


(c) Copyright 2018, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.

Finally, a New Cat Bed Gets a Lodger

Remember the two new kitty beds the human dragged home after Thanksgiving? Well, it would be an understatement to say they have not gotten a lot of love. Despite their incredibly plush interior and the opportunities each offers for a kitty person to hide in plain sight, they have had little use as proper beds.  (The human got them on clearance, so therein may lie the problem.)Pepe does love to attack the pompoms on the blue one that looks like a jewelry pouch. In fact, he batted the decorations so hard that he split the thread holding one of the poms together, then had a grand time chasing the fibrous ball of fluff that had been inside. (It’s since been lost, so no go on the human fixing it unless she wants to buy a big bag of fiberfill just to fix a single pompom.)However, the triangular/teepee-shaped bed finally got a visitor. The human spied the inhabitant, flipped on the light, and edged ever closer with the camera, much to the annoyance of the feline in question. It’s behavior like this that earns the human scowls!

Happy New Year, one and all. Thanks for following the antics of the meows over the last 12 months.


(c) Copyright 2017, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.