Frankie goes stir-crazy if he is stuck in the house too long. It was probably over a week since I took him for a walk and maybe almost that long since he last escaped so he was driving me crazy with his crying and scratching at the door. I couldn’t take it anymore so, even though I was busy, I got his harness and we went outside.
I hope everyone reading this is doing well and I hope if you are stuck at home you are not going stir-crazy like Frankie.
Frankie escaped yesterday again which has become highly annoying, especially since I just took him for a walk the day before. It happened as I was leaving to go to the store so I couldn’t leave until I got him back in the house.
The first thing he did when I tried to catch him was run across the street and under a vehicle that was parked there. I tried, unsuccessfully, to coax him out, or at least get him close enough to pull him out, but he is too smart for that.
After a while he became distracted with a lizard, which he caught and headed for home with it. I thought he wanted to bring it in the house but he went under my car with it instead.
Cats like to play with their prey so he let it go and recaptured it a couple of times before the lizard came out from under the car enough for me to catch it. I then moved it back a foot or two and let it go. I was hoping Frankie would come out to get it but both stayed motionless. That is when I gave the lizard a little push to get him moving which also got Frankie moving. He ran out from under the car into my waiting arms.
When we moved to our new home the cats gained some indoor space but lost their outside catio. Before we built the catio I would take Frankie for a walk on the harness once or twice a week then let Chris out for 10 or 15 minutes while I watched him. Since moving, and before last week, Frankie has only been outside a couple of times and only because he escaped.
Frankie hangs out under vehicles when I am close so I can’t catch him.
Chris escaped a couple of times too and I let him out once or twice because he has been much more demanding (and annoying) about going outside.
I hesitated to let Frankie out because he didn’t make a big fuss at the door like Chris and I wanted to keep it that way but I also wanted him to have some outside time. In addition, I wanted him to get used to where our house is in case he escapes again and loses his way. This will be important because we will be on vacation next week and I don’t want the cat-sitter to have problems.
I let him outside for the first time on October 1 and he was so happy.
Of course, he has to stop and smell the bushes.
Getting him home was a nightmare. He tends to walk in one direction so I have to pick him up to get him home but he has learned to be more aggressive and he hisses, growls and struggles to get out of my grasp. I couldn’t hold on to him for more than ten seconds at a time. I just tried to get him to walk in the right direction. When He changed course I would pick him up again until he broke free.
As usual, when Frankie returned, Chris went outside.
And also, as usual, he did his happy roll where everyone could see him.
That scene repeated the following week but I haven’t downloaded the photos from my phone yet and I am a bit too rushed to do it now but I’m sure you get the idea. Frankie has now become like Chris and both have become extremely annoying about going outside.
Saturday is typically outside day for Chris and Frankie. I first take Frankie for a cat walk on his leash and harness and then I let Chris outside for some fresh air and grass.
Chris doesn’t require a harness because he generally stays close to home. I do watch him because he wanders off sometimes and I have to pick him up and bring him back. Mostly he just eats grass and relaxes.
I usually sit at our table outside and watch him. Sometimes he joins me at the table.
Sometimes I sit on the steps and he joins me there.
Other times he wanders to the back of the house and I have to uproot myself and follow him. I’ll sit on the blocks behind the shed and Chris will hang out with me there too.
If any cats out there want to know how to get outside, just do what Frankie does and relentlessly annoy the hell out of anyone with opposable thumbs until they can’t take it anymore and take you for a walk. Here is an example of what I am talking about.
This video was taken yesterday. My wife had to hold Chris to keep him from running out the door because it is too difficult to watch Chris while I am walking Frankie.
Here in Florida we have a type of wild grass, that is essentially a weed, that produces seeds, called sandspurs, in the fall that are round and covered with sharp spikes. They are especially bad in my neighborhood. We were outside for about ten minutes before Frankie stepped on one of these sandspurs.
This has happened a few times before but this was the worst. We were actually on the sidewalk when he got one of these nasty things in his paw. He cried and immediately tried to remove it using his mouth. That worked but now it was stuck in his mouth. I tried to help but he was freaking out at that point so I decided to pick him up and take him home in hopes that Rose could get it out while I held him. Fortunately, it was out by the time I reached home and, of course, Chris ran out when we came in.
I was planning on letting him out next so I went outside to watch him. He was so happy to be outside but, unlike Frankie, he was content to eat grass and roll around on the driveway.
Our cats are stuck inside most of the time so I can’t blame them for trying to get out every time someone opens the door. Lately Frankie has been relentless. He stands by the door and cries or he runs to the door every time someone in the house gets up.
I try to put a harness on him at least once each weekend. When I do, Chris is right there ready to run out the door. I try to stop him but I often fail and he is outside with Frankie. That is what happened Saturday. I tried watching Chris while I had Frankie on the harness. It was easy at first because Frankie and Chris were both content with staying close to home while eating grass.
The problem started when Chris wandered to the back to see what Frankie was doing and then kept going to the neighbor’s driveway behind us. I then had to put Frankie inside the house and retrieve Chris. I then brought Chris inside and let Frankie back out again. It was a pain but Frankie was happy in the end.