Living with Carnivores

A vegetarian human's adventure with cats

Category: Unexpected Gifts

Fishy

The silly human came home from the pet-supply store the other evening practically cackling with delight. She’d found a new “educational” cat toy — or, rather, one that promised mental enrichment for the cats. It was a sizeable “fish” stuffed with fluff, catnip, and a USB-chargeable unit that causes the tail to flip back and forth. This creates the effect of a thrashing fish, as if it had suddenly found itself out of water. The fish effectively flips itself across the floor while also making a clicking sound. The 2-legged had to charge the unit before first use, so she removed the innards and plugged them in, then brought the rest of the fish upstairs for the cats to check out. Both Caesar and Pepe gave it a sniff, and several times that evening Pepe gave it a good thrashing.

It’s probably appropriate then that as soon as the human and cats came down for breakfast, and the human reassembled the toy and put it on the ground, Pepe came over to check it out.

He was soon joined by Caesar, who rushed over to see what was up with this strange creature that had found its way into their house. It turns out that the fish is touch-sensitive, so after thrashing around and clicking for about 90 seconds, it lays still (and goes silent) until someone touches it with a paw or nose or hand in the middle section — not at the tail or head where the Big Boys were sniffing. By now, Corky had joined the team investigating the interloper.

The human has been moving the fish around the house for the last few days. In the long run, it may fail to hold their attention, but at least for now whenever Caesar hears that particular clicking, he rushes into the room and starts sniffing the creature. This morning, the human found the Emperor laying beside the fish toy, as though on guard. And when he got up, the human found 5 toy mice sitting beside the fish. Did he think the fish was hungry? Or did he think the mice would teach the fish some manners? It’s times like this that the human really would love to know what her masters were thinking.

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

A Little Morning Exercise

The human was eating her breakfast and the Pepster was right beside her. For a while, he was content to just lay sprawled out on the chair, but then he got bored.

He started looking for something he could steal to entertain himself. The human pulled out a small piece of metallized film from a treat she’d finished and began waving the piece back and forth along the back of the chair.

The Pepster had a grand time attacking the shiny object the human was moving here and there.

Eventually he tired and left for the upstairs. At least he got a little exercise.

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

A New Puff: And Mac Claims it!

Mac had been ruling the new pink puff, not allowing any of the other kitties to sleep in it and enjoy its luxurious softness. Then, just like that, she had other places to be. That provided first Caesar, then Fireball, with the opportunity to check out the new kitty bed, which they embraced enthusiastically.

During the time when Mac wasn’t sharing with the other cats, the 2-legged’s friend treated those kitties to yet another puff. This one is a lovely shade of light, warm brown. The human put it in the second bedroom.

No surprise, Mac immediately claimed the new brown puff and settled in for a nap. It had the advantage of having no other kitty smells on it.

She’s been spending morning and night in the new bed and hasn’t been letting any of her adopted brothers have access to it. So much for sharing.

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

Pink Puff Paw Dangles

In this house, Mac is a very famous paw dangler.

Here she is demonstrating the double-forward paw dangle (AKA superkitty) technique from the new pink puff. Note the spread toes, which apparently required additional aeration.

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

Mac Owns the Pink Puff

For the first time in four months, the human and a friend had a short visit a week or so back and finally got to exchange holiday gifts. Those lucky kitties received a really fluffy pink kitty bed. And Mac has absolutely claimed ownership of the pink puff.

The bed has been sitting out for over a week. However, the only kitty the human has seen in it is Mac, who seems to relish how soft and fluffy it is. And doesn’t she look absolutely adorable in it? It’s just the perfect size for her diminutive form and the color is a knockout against her black and white fur.

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

Big Red Crackly Bag

The human placed a big plastic bag from a takeout meal on the floor. Pepe, Mac, and Caesar all came over for a look and a sniff.

<<<Nah, we’ll pass. This isn’t so very interesting after all.>>>

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

Cloth Bag

<<<A cloth shopping bag whose handle is sticking straight up in the air. I’m sure I can fit inside.>>>

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

Afternoon Migration

The human took a break from working in her office one afternoon and found not one, but two toys had been left outside the door for her entertainment. Such thoughtful cats!

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

What do You Mean that’s Not Dignified?

<<<Complaints from the peanut gallery will not even be considered today.>>>

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

A Thoughtful Afternoon Gift

Caesar, being the polite and thoughtful cat he is, likes to bring his human little toy mice as gifts several times per day. In the early morning hours, he hopes his gift will encourage the lazy human to exit the kitty nest and get going with her day (and the feeding of the meows). During the afternoon, when the human is often on conference calls, he likes to bring toys to the edge of her office in the hopes of getting her to wind up her day and feed the meows their dinner. The fact that his gifts are usually preceded by loud moaning sounds just adds to the interesting things that humans on the other end of the call get to hear.

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

Toys Need Snacks too

Sliced chicken. Check. Toy mouse. Check.

Clearly, that mouse needs a bath after frolicking in the food bowl. Good thing the human discovered (by accident) that the toy mice can go through a full load of laundry and not delaminate. Oddly enough, that’s not the case when they spend the night in one of the water bowls. <<<Sigh.>>>

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

Mousy Dental Treats

The human tried out a new-to-the-household package of dental treats for the cats. Despite being fish flavored, the monsters ate them up. So, encouraged, the human went back to the petfood store and bought several more packages. At this point, the monsters decided that they did not like the fish-flavored treats and stopped eating them. However, they did put one of their toy mice in the treat bowl just to see if it liked the snack. It did not. The human now has 4 packages of dental treats that are essentially unusable. <<<Heavy sigh…>>>

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

Feeding Your Toys

The care and feeding of your toy mice is an important aspect of being a responsible feline master. We didn’t like this food anyway, so we put our toy in the bowl to see if the mouse would like it. It didn’t. Still, it’s important that we offered.

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

Every Yogi Needs a Toy

The human rolled out her yoga mat and did some stretching. After a bit, she stood up and went into the kitchen for a drink of water. When she came back, an orange toy mouse was sitting on her pale blue yoga mat and a big mackerel tabby was beating a hasty retreat into the next room.

 

(c) Copyright 2020, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Image my own.

Party in the Bowl

Corky was being a bit of a brat one afternoon when the human was trying to work. He didn’t like any of the food that was out, he didn’t want to play with any of the toys, he didn’t want to go out on the catio, and he didn’t want to be brushed again. Finally, not knowing what else to do other than lock herself into her office, the human took out some dried catnip and put it in a bowl. It’s unclear if Corky ate any that afternoon, but later in the evening, as she prepared for sleep, the human put the bowl on the stairs figuring that someone might like a little nippy during nighttime adventures. When the human awoke the next morning, this is what she saw. As you know, it’s nothing in this house to find a toy mouse in a food or water bowl or both. However, it’s far less common to find 2 mice in a bowl at the same time. Interestingly, the human left the toy mice in the bowl with the catnip all that day and evening. When she awoke the following morning, both mice were gone and so was most of the catnip — although some had clearly been spilled on the stairs. What do you suppose that was all about?

 

 

 

(c) Copyright 2020, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Images my own.

A Special Gift

Yes, the mean human is always telling tales out of turn about the kitties. However, what do the kitties do to show their love and affection for the strange two-legged? Why they leave one of their toy mice right on her pillows while she’s off working. <<Who says we don’t appreciate her?>>

 

 

 

(c) Copyright 2020, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Image my own.

While You Lay Sleeping

Sometimes the human thinks she doesn’t sleep much at night, but evidence to the contrary meets her eyes the following morning.  For example, three nights ago the two-legged woke to find not 1, not 2, but 7 tiny toy mice lined up beside her bed. She crushed a couple while climbing down from the tall bed in the dark the following morning. The cats always make that distinctive throaty moaning sound as they drag toy mice upstairs for the human and drop them on the floor. The fact that the human didn’t hear that happen 7 times in the same night suggests that she was out of it.

 

 

(c) Copyright 2020, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Image my own.

The Boxster

Pepe loves boxes:  big boxes, little boxes, tiny boxes that he can barely put a paw into, it doesn’t seem to matter to him. The human had been sorting out files and using a tall cardboard box to carry the papers out to the recycle bin.  Goofy Boy saw the box and wanted to know what it was. The obliging human turned the box on its side and, quick as a bunny, the boxster hopped in and had a look around.<<Yup, it’s a box. What fun!!>>

Honestly, how can you resist a face like that?

 

(c) Copyright 2020, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Image my own.

Hidden Treasure

The silly human was walking through the living room when the edge of her foot stepped on a piece of rug that didn’t feel “right.” Upon closer inspection, the human noticed that the edge of the rug was slightly elevated. That usually means only one thing: one of the cats has lifted the corner of the rug and tossed a toy underneath, then either forgotten to remove it or grown bored and left it there. Sure enough, upon lifting the edge of the rug, the human spied a little toy mouse. How nice to find a kitty gift so early in the day.

 

(c) Copyright 2020, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Images my own.

No Box Too Small

In this house, the rule is that no paper bag and no box is too small for Pepe and Corky to explore. They may not exactly be able to fit all that much of their bodies into said bag or box, but they are definitely going to check it out anyway.

 

(c) Copyright 2020, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Images my own.