April 17, 2010

I wish I was a cat!

I wish I was a cat living in MY house!

I give my little creatures so much freedom. Compared to the way cats are generally, not always, but generally, treated in Taiwan, these creatures of mine have ‘the life of Riley’! They are protected from the outside world. They live in a generally, stress-free environment (for the exception of my guardian cat, Eloise). They always have 2 or 3 meals a day, fresh water, clean litter boxes (for the most part!), a time for rest, a lap to lay in, someone to pat them, play with them, love them.

As you know, I have six cats – 3 boys, 3 girls – well, six ‘its’! Nonetheless, it got me thinking the other day about why, for the first time in my life, I have female cats. All my growing up life, I can only remember us having males. We may have had a female, but I’m not sure. When I moved out on my own and had cats, they were always males. Now, I have a split of 3-3!

I’ve definitely noticed a difference between the sexes.

I’ve watched a lot of programs on Discovery about cats. I’ve read enough books. Seen enough little clips on YouTube as well as my own videos, to make a pretty good judgement on the differences.

In the feline world, women rule! Period! They are the hunters. They are the care-takers. They are the protectors. Oh sure, you’ve probably seen the movies or clips shot in the jungles of Africa, where the daddy lion or tiger have tracked down an unsuspecting antelope. However, he does it for himself!

The female is the one who hunts for the family. She is the one that will fight to the death if her kids are in danger. The man, well, he’s only good for one thing, and when that is over, off he goes. Much like “MR. STALLION” in FarmVille! (hahaha)

Take my cats here. Now, they may not be as big as a lion or a tiger, but they still, to a certain degree, imitate their distant cousins. They may not need to hunt down an antelope for dinner, or provide for kittens, but the instinct is still in them.

The boys tend to be playful. They will wrestle with each other, look and act like protectors of their realm, and when the ‘feeling’ gets to them, try to ‘woo’ the ladies. Once the feeling passes, or the ladies get upset, then things return to normal. They sleep 18 out of every 24 hours (on average), and during those 6 waking hours, are always pruning themselves or playing.

The girls on the other hand, are vicious! They constantly fight with each other. Eloise, being the older cat, and although MUCH smaller in stature, is the HEAD MAMA! This is her country. What she wants to do, or where she wants to go, or which dish she wants to eat out of, is her decision. The other girls MUST obey, or face her wrath!

Now, I always thought, and obviously, I’ve learned something in my lifetime, that after having a cat (or dog) neutered or spayed, meant that they would tend to calm down. I figured that having other playmates, would tire them out. I figured that by giving them three litter boxes and 7 different dishes to eat from, would keep them calm. Boy, was I wrong.

Every time either Cornelia or Arabela want to use the litter box, Eloise stands guard outside the box, or on top, similar to Snoopy when acting as a vulture sitting on his doghouse. She waits and waits and waits. She is a very patient cat, I must admit. She waits until the unsuspecting cat tries to exit the litter box, and then it is all out war. Why? I don’t know. There are three boxes. Should be enough for 6 cats, on would think. Hell, I’ve lived in a house where there were 8 people, and only ONE bathroom!

I have, as I said, 7 bowls for my babies to eat from. Actually, the more I think about it, I actually have 9! But who’s counting?? Anyway, I have a ‘dry food’ dispenser. I put the dry food in, as they eat it from the ‘trough’, the food drops down and refills the ‘trough’. Pretty good system, but I’ve been finding lately that I fill it about every other day! It also has a ‘water trough’ of sorts. Fill or partially fill a 2-litre plastic bottle with water, insert, and voila, fresh water. They all, and I mean EVERY ONE OF THEM, still like to drink the water from the toilet or the sink anyway. Whatever!

I was at IKEA in Kao-hsiung about a year ago, and bought 5 dishes for them. I also have Gabriel’s original purple plastic dish, when he was the only ‘kid on the block’. Now, the only cat that will eat, or rather amongst themselves, the only one that EATS from this bowl, is ‘grandpa’ (Simba). Only he will a) eat from this bowl, and b) only one ALLOWED to eat from this bowl! I find it rather hilarious.

The dry food dispenser, when I’m doling out the wet food in the morning and night, I must put some into the ‘trough’ for Ignatius. He will not, or refuses, or whatever, to eat from any other bowl. Cornelia, refuses to eat dry food. Oh, she will eat it, but not chew it. She will swallow it whole, then throw up on the floor. Her way of telling me that she is hungry, and doesn’t want the dry. So, if it past her designated feeding time, I can expect to clean up a bit of undigested, uneaten, dry food. Makes for a wonderful start to my day, when it is dark, and happen to step in this mess that is conveniently left where I WILL step in it!

However, through all these adventures, or signs of wanting attention in some way, I would not want any other animal in my life. I have grown very fond of cats. They are loving creatures. Okay, so they are not quite as cooperative as a dog, they won’t stay when told to, but they certainly show their love and admiration for their chosen owner, in other ways.

I am definitely, a ‘cat person’!


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