Making the Bed… With Cats


I have learned that if you want to get a cat’s attention, start making the bed. They could all be sleeping in the other room but once you start to pull the sheets up, you’ve got a party.

I didn’t always know that bed making was a favorite activity of many cats. I first noticed it with our cat Tigger many years ago. I would pick him up and put him on the floor and he would jump right back up on the bed. This became the routine every morning. I started singing a song by Chumbawamba while making the bed; “I get knocked down but I get up again. You’re never going to keep me down.” I never knew the rest of the lyrics so I would just repeat those to Tigger while I struggled to finish the bed.

Now that Tigger is gone, Chris and Puck are happy to take over the duties of making my job as difficult as possible and they are very good at it.

Our cats, Chris and Puck, on the bed

Patio Life


Here on the west coast of Florida, it gets pretty hot in the summer. It seems almost every afternoon the temperature is at or near 95 degrees Fahrenheit. There is also a high humidity in the summer that makes being outside during midday quite unpleasant. We try to limit our outdoor activities to the mornings or late afternoons.

Chris and Puck feel that way too. Often they use that time to nap on the sofa or, in Chris’s case, find a human to bother. Frankie is different. I often look out the window to see him napping on the patio during the hottest part of the afternoon. He must be part camel or something because he spends much of his day outside in the heat and does not seem to be bothered by it in the least. Perhaps he still retains some of the traits of his distant ancestor, the African Wildcat.

Our cat Frankie on our patioOur cat Frankie on our patioOur cat Frankie on our patioOur cat Frankie on our patioOur cat Frankie in bowl on our patioOur cat Frankie on my bike on our patioOur cat Frankie on my trike on our patio

Everybody was Kung Fur Fighting


I worry about my cats sometimes. I worry that one cat is going to seriously injure another, or worse, in a knocked-down, dragged-out, no-holds-barred fight. In some ways though, things are getting better. The fights are less frequent and Chris seems to be making an effort  to make friends with Frankie. In other ways, things seem worse. When they do fight it is intense and at least one cat ends up doing the cat equivalent of “screaming like a little girl.” That cat is usually Chris.

I heard them fighting last night after we went to bed and again very early this morning. When I got up and went into the living room I saw something that shocked me.

Let’s back up a little. The problems started when we adopted Frankie. Don’t get me wrong. Frankie is a wonderful cat and I really enjoy having him here, but we failed to consider an important issue before we chose him. We didn’t think about what would happen if we brought an alpha male into a house that already had an alpha male.

We didn’t know what type of cat Frankie was when we spotted him in the Petsmart adoption center. We just knew he was cute and friendly. We didn’t ask about his background or how he interacted with other cats. Frankly, I doubt if anyone knew that since they keep the cats seperated in the shelter. We also assumed that Chris liked everybody and he would accept a new cat just like he accepted Puck. But Puck is a follower, not a leader and the two of them get along well because of that.

Chris and Puck do fight sometimes but it is play fighting. There are also times when we will catch Chris on top of Puck, holding him by the neck and dragging him across the floor. (I have tried to get pictures of that behavior but it is always over before I get my camera.) I have no idea why he does that but Puck just lies there and lets him do it. It doesn’t seem to hurt him except for a little lost fur.

Frankie and Puck fight too, but again, it is play fighting. I often see one chase the other through the house and pounce. Then it repeats with the roles reversed. The fighting is controlled and there are no little girl screams.

I mentioned before that Chris is trying to be friends with Frankie, and that is true, but he will still attack Frankie for no apparent reason. For his part, Frankie is more tolerant of Chris but he is more often than not the instigator of the fights, and these fights are real fights, no playing involved. It starts with both cats waving their paws at each other. Then there is a pounce, a scream, and then the attacker backs away and the process repeats a few seconds later.

So what I saw this morning was more fur than I have ever seen at one time that was not attached to a cat. Below are photos of some, but not all, of the fur I saw in the living room.

Cat fur after a fight20140907_cats_1371

Some of the fur was black so poor puck found himself in the middle of the fighting. The rest belonged to Chris or Frankie or Both. I don’t know what happened but I am really starting to worry that someone is going to get hurt. Does anyone know how common injuries are from domestic cats fighting?

If you haven’t read my previous posts on the matter, here is a bit of a chronology, starting with Frankie’s adoption.

Meet Frankie, Our Newest Addition

New Cat Troubles

Did We Make a Mistake?

The Baddest Cat You’ll Ever Love… or Not

Photo Friday: Temporary Cease Fire

A Good Mouse, Spoiled

The Tables Have Turned

Rebuilding Burnt Bridges

Rebuilding Burnt Bridges – Part Two

Photo Friday: Keyboard Troubles


As you may or may not know, Chris has taken over his Facebook, Twitter and Google+ accounts (although I think he is slacking on Google+). The problem is, he is still having trouble learning the correct way to use the keyboard and I always seem to have to come to the rescue and type for him. What is even more of a problem is that when I am typing for him he suddenly remembers how to tap on the keys. Is it too much to expect a cat to type his own posts?

Bad Cat Chris lying on keyboard.

Into the Storm


Our cats are not normal. It’s true. I don’t know how else to word it. Even Puck, who is as normal as they  come, sometimes gets caught up in the craziness.

Yesterday evening, just after sunset, I looked out our back window to blackness. There was plenty of light still coming through the front window but I could see a major storm was coming from the east. Then the rain started, slowly at first but soon it was pouring down and the wind was blowing it through the screens into the patio. Soon there was lightning all around us and the loud thunder was cascading through the house.

Any normal cat would have been under the bed at that point, and that is exactly where I expected Puck to be, but he wasn’t. He was on the patio with Chris and Frankie, standing on the wet floor and watching the lightning show from the best spot in the house. I wish I was able to get pictures of that but Rose shooed them inside before I had a chance to get my camera.

I don’t think I will ever fully understand cats, or at least not my cats.

 

Paper or Plastic?


Paper or Plastic? Our cats are very conscious of the environment and much prefer paper. Of course, that could just be because paper bags are easier to climb inside of. Here is Frankie and Chris making good use of a paper bag.

Our cat Frankie in paper bag.

I know what you’re thinking, Chris.

Our cats Frankie and Chris fighting over paper bag.

That’s an interesting bag you have there Frankie. Can I join you?

Our cats Frankie and Chris fighting over paper bag.

No! It’s mine! Go away!

Our cats Frankie and Chris fighting over paper bag.

C’mon Frankie! Look at all the room.

Our cats Frankie and Chris fighting over paper bag.

Fine! Take it! You always get your way, Chris.

Our cats Frankie and Chris fighting over paper bag.

Don’t be mad, Frankie.

Our cat Chris in paper bag.

Frankie, Look! There is room for both of us… Frankie?