Bad Cat Frankie

Frankie has been a real pain lately. If you read my post, We’ve Created a Monster, you know it started when Frankie escaped briefly on Thanksgiving and then got worse after I decided to put a harness on him and let him outside.

It seems that whenever we are in the living room, Frankie is there batting at the vertical blinds or digging his claws into the screen. I decided after that post to stop bringing him outside. I thought he would eventually forget about it and stop being such an annoying pest but things don’t always go as planned.

Our cat Frankie picking at the screens

When Rose and I come home together it is easier to double team the cats to keep them from running out. Chris has always been great at sneaking out the door but we have adjusted to his little tricks. Unfortunately, now that Frankie is aggressively trying to get out as well, keeping them both in has become much more difficult.

A little over a week ago I came home without Rose. It is very dark by the door since we don’t keep a light on all day so I knew I would have to be extra careful. I opened the door, which swings open from my right to my left, and put one of the bags in my hand down low and pushed Chris back, away from the door. Just then Frankie came around from the left. I moved the bag over to block Frankie but he slipped under the bag and under the door and was free.

I put everything down, closed the door and went after him. Frankie is not a cat like Chris, when he gets out he runs and keeps running away from the house (see Frankie’s Big Adventure). Since it was dark and did not have Rose’s help, I really worried I would lose him. We nearly lost him twice before during the daytime.

I pursued him past the condo building next door and he then disappeared between two buildings. I thought that was it, he would either come back on his own or he wouldn’t. I didn’t want to give up but didn’t know what to do so I decided to stand near the street and wait. My hope was that he would venture back toward me.

I waited about five minutes and suddenly I saw a flash of gold. It was Frankie. I moved toward him but he hid under a car. I tried to coax him out and it worked at first. He come out close enough to smell my hand but when I moved to grab him he was gone.

I then tried to think like a sheep dog and basically “herded” Frankie toward home. When I got close, I saw my neighbor and asked for his help. Together, the two of us forced Frankie to our front yard where he gave up and rolled on his back in surrender.

Spray bottle and FrankieSince then, he has been more annoying then ever. We decided to buy a spray bottle in an attempt to keep him from ruining the screens further and as a method of coming and going at will. We tried that before on Chris with little success (see Chris versus the spray bottle) but so far it has worked on Frankie. Now when we leave we point the bottle at him and then leave it outside the door for when we come home. I also spray him when he starts picking at the screen.

Does anybody else have a problem with keeping cats inside? i’d love to her about it.

14 thoughts on “Bad Cat Frankie

  1. Carole

    We’re lucky to have a double door both back and front, but I know how hard it is to keep a cat from where they want to be. They’re like greased lightning!
    Hope you find a solution.

  2. fozziemum

    Oh dear the eternal struggle of man versus beast..we have had the same problem…we may be on 11 acres but the threat outside from Eastern browns in summer is very real. We have buikt the catio and plan on extending with more tunnels as the girls have rebelled by revenge peeing everywhere! a nightmare..with four cats as you can imagine……is it at all possible to make a catflap with a tunnel for Frankie to go out safely..these can be put in easily even in rental accoms..and I can give you a million tips on it if you like..the way ours is set up allows access to outside all day and night…it is a battle as we still have the occasional escapee…yikes…hugs Fozziemum

    1. Charles Huss Post author

      We have a cat flap to our screened patio. I think that will have to do. Don’t think our landlord would want us building anything beyond that. Frankie just needs to learn to be happy as an indoor cat. Chris is bad like that too but when he goes outside he stays close so I don’t worry so much.

  3. The Island Cats

    That’s a tough one. Wally likes to run outside but he rarely goes far so I usually can grab him easily. I’m not big on using squirt bottles on cats, but in your situation it may be necessary. The thing about squirt bottles is that if the cat sees you with it, he’ll start associating you with the squirt bottle, which is not what you want. I wish I had a good suggestion for you.

    1. Charles Huss Post author

      I agree. I don’t like it either so I try not to squirt him with it too much. If I do, I squirt lightly and more next to him than in his face. Unfortunately, i have to take drastic measures to keep from losing him.

  4. Summer

    My human says we are all wusses (and Sparkle was too) because none of us has ever had a strong urge to go outside. A couple of times sneaking out, but that was it and we were caught right away (except for that one time my human left the house, not knowing Binga was outside and came home to her wandering around the garden and meowing piteously). Even though I get to go out on a leash, I don’t really care about going out without one. Is he treat motivated? Maybe you could toss his favorite treat away from the door when you come and go.

    1. Charles Huss Post author

      I actually give them Stella and Chewey’s freeze dried meal as a dry treat because it is much more healthy than standard treats, the problem is that they tend to be a bit messy so I don’t want to cause a mess and leave. Chris got out once when I went for a bike ride and I didn’t realize it until I got home and he was waiting for me, crying and panting.

  5. twoblindcatsandcrew

    I use to. Oreo used to follow Joey out when he went outside on leash. I made an outdoor enclosure to solve problem for seeing cats.


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