Tag Archives: Cat door

Frankie’s Favorite Place

Last week Frankie discovered how to get from the house to the patio using the cat door. He has loved the patio since we first introduced him to it and suddenly he could go out there whenever he wanted to. The problem was, he apparently didn’t realize that the cat door worked in both directions.

We came home after work one evening to find Frankie at the door wanting to come in. I don’t know how long he was out there but I did know he needed to learn how to get into the house before we left for work the next day. I tried a couple of times to put him in front of the cat door and open it so he could see it worked both ways but he would not pay attention. He just walked away like he was bored. Finally I picked him up and gently shoved him through the door. I felt bad doing it but I did not want him to go on the patio and then not be able to get back inside where his food and litter is.

Since then he goes out and comes back in at will. He likes lying on the chair and watching the goings on of the outside world but he does not like Chris out there bothering him.

Our cats Chris and Frankie

Fortunately, he discovered a place where he can be relatively free of other annoying cats (or should I say cat?) and still have a great view of outside.

Our cat Frankie

Now, if we haven’t seen Frankie for a while, we have a good idea where to look first.

Happiness is Unrestricted Patio Access

When we first looked at our new place we were not able to see inside because someone was still living here but we did look at it from the outside and liked the fact that it had an enclosed patio. It was fully enclosed, which is not as good for the cats as just screened but we thought we could open the windows for them and they would be happy.

When we finally were able to meet with the Realtor we discovered that he listed the wrong address and the unit for rent was actually the one next door, which had no enclosure on the patio at all. In addition, the 1100 square feet turned out to be more like 850. That was very disappointing because the location was fantastic and it was very difficult to find a rental in an area that we liked.

This is what our patio looked like when we first saw it. To the left was the unit that was listed by mistake.

This is what our patio looked like when we first saw it. To the left was the unit that was listed by mistake.

When we were finally able to look inside, we liked what we saw but we told the Realtor that for the high rent we would be paying, we would need to have the patio screened. The cats would not have been happy cooped up inside. We later learned that the owners agreed and two days after we moved in we had a new, screened-in patio.

Our new screened-in patio

Our new screened-in patio – Notice Chris to the far right.

Once the patio was enclosed we put our cat door on the slider and the cats were able to go in and out at will, even when we were at work, which was not possible before because we could only lock it from the inside and since we had to leave through that door we had to keep it unlocked. We didn’t want someone coming by and letting the cats out so they were forced to stay inside all day.

Chris on Patio

20130606_Chris enjoying new patio

Coincidentally, we lived in the building in front of Chris two years ago.

Now they can come and go 24 hours a day, which is a real treat. They also have a much bigger patio to enjoy. In addition, we now live next door to a marina and there is a lot of activity for the cats to watch, There is also plenty of birds that make an appearance, especially an egret that must have been fed by the former tenant.

Egret on our patio
On another note, the bird that laid her eggs just outside our front window on the day we moved in sat on them for almost two weeks until Rose noticed on Friday morning that the nest was empty except for two eggs that were broken open. We think that a predator attacked the nest. Too bad; we were looking forward to seeing little chicks outside our window.

Chris’s Door

After moving into our townhome, the cats were very happy to be able to go out on the patio again.This patio was even better because it was on the ground floor where they could better see the ducks, squirrels, lizards, dogs, people and whatever else walked, crawled, slithered or flew by.

There was a couple of problems however. First, there is a saying that “no matter what side of a door a cat is on, he will always want to be on the other side.” This is true for our cats and it was somewhat annoying having to let them out and back in all the time. Chris was especially annoying because he was very vocal about wanting to change sides.

The other problem was that we had to keep them inside at night because there was no food, water or a litter box outside. This meant that Chris was upstairs annoying us for half the night while we were trying to sleep. Then one day the solution just appeared.

Our new cat door
Our new cat door

We ran across someone selling a cat door that attaches to a sliding glass door, so we decided to buy it. We had one in South Carolina but it would not fit the tracks. It did fit the track for the screen however so we put it on that track. This worked but did not allow us to lock the door so the cats had to stay in at night and when we were not home.

Now we actually had a cat door that worked the way it was supposed to. Chris, of course, had no problem zipping in and out through the door. Abbey and Tigger were a few weeks behind getting the hang of it.

Chris and Tigger enjoying the patio
Chris and Tigger enjoying the patio.

The best part about the cat door was that it cut down on the amount of time that Chris was upstairs keeping us awake. After a short time I decided to try closing the bedroom door again. As usual I put the plastic runner under the door and put an object on each side in hopes of preventing Chris from digging up the carpet. This did not work before but now it seemed worth another shot.

Miraculously, we were finally able to get a good night’s sleep. Sure, Chris would come up at 4:30 in the morning and cry and scratch at the door, but we would just ignore him and eventually he would quit and go away. I think this worked because he had somewhere better he could be.

But alas, he would not truly earn his name Bad Cat Chris if this was the end of the story. When it comes to Chris, any solution is only temporary until he can find a new way to cause trouble. I’ll save that story for another time.

On another note, Bad Cat Chris now has his own Facebook page. There is a button on the side bar if you would like to “Like” him or you can check out the page at facebook.com/badcatchris.