The window by my desk overlooks our back yard. From time to time I will see a white cat walk through our yard. I think I saw the same cat in our yard last winter so we must be part of her territory. Yesterday, Frankie and Floki were on the catio and I went out there to check on them. When I did, I noticed their attention fixed on the white cat.
Nobody was howling or hissing or making a fuss. They were just looking at each other.
The last time this happened with another cat it was also a peaceful encounter. I speculated then that it must have been a female because another male would probably have elicited a different response. If I am right, this white cat is probably also a female. If anyone has a reason to confirm or reject my hypothesis, I would like to hear about it.
Chris has been very reluctant to go up and down the stairs these last couple of weeks and I find myself having to carry him up and down so he can join the family. Occasionally, he will make the trip on his own, like he did Friday evening.
I was very happy to see him go up the stairs on his own but watching him made me worry even more. He seemed to be limping up the steps, although I don’t know exactly what limping up stairs looks like with a cat but I would guess that is what he was doing. He seemed to dip down further on the right which made me think he was having pain in his right front leg.
I decided to go on Amazon and look for something that might help. I found Joint Support Chews that have Glucosamine, Omega3, and other stuff. The link above is an affiliate link so you can see what I ordered but since I have not received it yet I can’t recommend it.
Yesterday afternoon I carried Chris downstairs so he could be with the rest of the family. I set him down at the foot of the stairs and tried to show him the door to the catio was open. I wanted to see him walk but he just sat there. After more prompting he walked toward me but I didn’t notice a limp this time.
He stopped in front of the empty food bowls and tried to send me a psychic message but I pretended not to notice.
Eventually he went outside and later came upstairs on his own when I wasn’t watching so I don’t know what to think now. I guess I will just keep an eye on him and hope the Chews help.
My wife left for Virgina on Tuesday Morning for a work trip. I thought it would be a good time to set up my security camera so that you can better understand why we have been closing Chris out of the bedroom all these years. The camera only records when it detects movement. Even so, it recorded over 25 minutes of video. I was able to cut it down a little but it is still long. I should have quadrupled the speed during processing but I just now thought of that. I think after a few minutes you will get the idea.
There is a time stamp on the video so you can see what time it was for each disturbance. Chris was actually pretty good and didn’t start with his shenanigans until almost 1:00 a.m. It’s hard to see but he likes digging his claws into my skin which is what is most disturbing.
It has become a routine lately that the cats go outside for ten or fifteen minutes every Sunday. I put Frankie’s harness and leash on and walk around the yard with him while Rose keeps an eye on Chris and Puck. It seems that Frankie has gradually come to realize that there are plenty of interesting things in our own back yard and has become less envious of what is on the other side of the fence. The last time I had him on the leash he did not even attempt to go through the fence.
It was then that I decided it was time to lose the leash and let Frankie play with Chris and puck unencumbered. I was pretty confident that he would stay close if I watched him and “herded” him away from the fence if needed. I was also certain he would return home since he has…
I mentioned before that there were a couple of older kittens that came around our house. One of them returned yesterday evening while my wife and I were out on the catio, without the cats.
I put my hand up against the screen and the kitten was rubbing his head on it. We talked about how bad we felt because we wanted to give him some food but we didn’t want to get him used to it because we are leaving in less than a month. Instead, I thought it wouldn’t hurt if I went outside and pet him for a while.
After a short time my wife decided to throw caution to the wind and brought out a plate of food. At first he didn’t want the food. He seemed to want attention more, but after a while he started eating.
The next door neighbor was outside at the time and I overheard my wife talking to her. According to the neighbor, the kitten, along with at least one other, are being cared for across the street from us. She also said the neighbor doesn’t want the kittens and is looking for homes for them. I wish we could take this one in because he, or she, is so cute and friendly, but we have a one cat limit in Florida and traveling with three cats is hard enough.
Saturday night Chris whinned and cryed and scratched at the bedroom door until finally I opened the door and let him in. He was surprisingly good. He did bother me a little but it was not untill almost 6 a.m. before he became unbearable and by then the goal of lasting an entire night in the bedroom had been accomplished.
The above photo is from 2019 but I think it illustrates how difficult Chris can be. The next photo is poor quality but it too shows what a pain Chris can be, literally.
I do not know if Chris sleeping with us will become a habit but I hope he can learn to behave himself.
We went to Parkersburg yesterday morning and when we returned in the afternoon Chris was upstairs, as expected. I thought he would enjoy some catio time so I carried him downstairs, fed them first, and then opened the door to the catio. They were all happy about that.
I need to start making sure that Chris gets to enjoy quality time downstairs with everyone.
They stayed out there for three hours. I finally coaxed them inside with a can of wet food for dinner. Chris then sat between Rose and I on the sofa while we finished watching King Kong, a three hour and twenty minute movie that we started Friday.
When the movie was over I went upstairs while Rose watched a girlie show. After a short time she called me and said to come to the stairs. When I did I saw Chris on the landing. He had come up on his own. I was very happy to see that .
When we first brought our cats to our new West Virginia home last November, I was concerned that Chris’s age and weight would be a problem when going up and down the stairs but, to our surprise, he was the first one to investigate the upstairs. During that stay he would not hesitate to go up and down the stairs.
Fast forward to a month ago when we returned and Chris would still go up and down the stairs but he seemed to spend more time upstairs and would come down later in the day or evening when Rose and I were both downstairs. Several days ago I noticed Floki and Frankie were spending time on the catio without Chris. I started to pay attention and noticed Chris stopped coming downstairs.
I also noticed that sometimes when Chris gets off my lap, he doesn’t land gracefully like a cat but seems to stumble. I am concerned that maybe he is getting arthritis or is in pain for another reason. My concern is that he just all of a sudden stopped coming down the stairs. That tells me that something got worse pretty quickly.
I will say that since we have been back he has rarely come downstairs for breakfast. Usually he waits in the bedroom or at the top of the stairs. Since he cares about dry food more than wet food I consider it to be at least partly because of apathy.
Once downstairs I and open a can of wet food and put it on three plates. By then Frankie is on the counter eating off one of the plates before I can put it down. After I put his plate down I head up with Chris and Floki’s plates. I learned that if I put Floki’s plate down too he will eat until I leave with Chris’s food then he will follow me. So now I just take both plates and Floki follows me up the stairs, talking to me the whole way up.
The last couple of evenings I picked up Chris and carried him downstairs and then carried him back up again. On the way up I put him down on the landing and let him walk up the last three or four steps, which he seems to do okay.
I want to take him in and have him looked at but there is no vet in this town. This town of 3800 people has three auto parts stores and two hardware stores but no veterinarian. I hope this is not a reflection of the priorities of the people in this town.
He seems okay otherwise so I guess I will just carry him around for the next month and then see his vet in Florida whenwe return.