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Thursday, August 30, 2007

George's rap on catnip


I’m catnipped up and feeling funny,
Goin' to get me a bunny,
Mice is great for me too
Yes, cat William, for you.
We both high and hip
We both high on catnip
Goin’ to flip
With catnip.

Nibble on a mouse and eat its head
Don’t know if he’s live or dead
I’m catnipped up and riding high
High at the sky, I tell no lie.
Man, she worries and she quibbles.
Me I hurries and I nibbles.
We both high and hip
We both high on catnip
Goin’ to flip
With catnip.

William and me is high as cats
We both goin' to get us some rats
Catnipped up and feeling strange
Jumpin' everythin' in range.
We both high and hip
We both high on catnip
Goin’ to flip
With catnip.

Monday, August 27, 2007

How the Pope could help black cats


Bad news in yesterday's newspapers. Black cats are being killed in Italy just because they are black. The Italian Association for the Protection of Animals claims that as many as 60,000 cats like me are slaughtered because of the stupidity and superstition of humans. I know we are discriminated against in Britain - Cats Protection find it more difficult to get homes for black cats like me. But in Italy it is much worse.
In Italy people believe that a black cat brings bad luck if it crosses their path. (Only wish we could sometimes!). And that where there is a black cat, the Devil is present too. Thousands of black cats go missing or are found dead every year because of this ridiculous human belief. Apparently the church itself was involved for centuries with priests ordering massacres like a sort of religious Klu Klux Klan. (And in the seventeenth century British authorities searching out "witches" also demonised their pet cats. Only now Brit humans believe black cats are lucky, thank goodness.) I only wish this Pope, who is meant to love cats, could do something to purge this superstition. Could he not have a word with God (whom I consider may well be a Cat not a Human Person - see earlier blogs.)
Why do humans think it is acceptable to torture and kill an animal because of the colour of its fur? And why black? What is the difference between white and black that black should be demonised in this way? Italian humans even kidnap black cats at Hallowe'en and sacrifice them in cruel ceremonies. Why are humans so very, very cruel? They claim we are cruel but are in denial about their own behaviour.
Help stamp out this discrimination, torture and killing. The Italians are going to hold a Black Cat Day on November 17. Watch this space....
PS. This picture is me inside a drawer. What I enjoy is climbing in, digging a sort of hole in the clothes and having a little nap. Do my bright eyes really look devilish? or just kittenish?

Thursday, August 23, 2007

I am curious about next door.


There has been a total black out of news from next door. Miss Ruby Fou (see a communication from her in a July blog), if she was there, has not been seen at the window nor has she ventured out. The cat flap remains firmly closed. Steffi and Paul no longer invite William and I in for a little snack or even some interesting conversation. Only some oriental smells have drifting out. Tantalising and very irritating indeed. This was our territory once. Now we are locked out.
So when the boiler went wrong next door, I took the opportunity to go in with Nigel Gardiner and take a look round. Nigel Gardiner and Son (Matthew actually) of Witney have put in a new boiler for us and I am familiar with his tall figure and his competant assessment of boilers. Nice man. Fond of cats and respectful of them too. To please him I had a look at the boiler. Lots of wires and stuff. No mice so not very interesting for cats but we cats like to have a look anyway. Nigel seemed to know what he was doing with the wires. William went in too but had less curiosity. He went straight to the plate of dried food that Miss Ruby Fou had left uneaten in the kitchen and ate the lot.
I checked the whole joint upstairs and downstairs. There was definitely a Siamese smell - upstairs on the double bed, downstairs in the kitchen area, and the litter tray had been used - though cleaned by Steffi before she and Paul and Miss Fou had left for London. Yes, Miss Fou has taken up residence at weekends. She is definitely now a neighbour at weekends.
How do I feel about it? I am not sure. She seems rather standoffish. Why not let us in? What is going on in the Paul and Steffi household? Is Miss Fou being held captive? Or is she too snobbish to mix with us?

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

I am dreaming of a beautiful white swan.


This is a huge white feather belonging to a swan. I leaped on it. nibbled it. played with it. Pouncing on it. Dragged it around. It was simply huge. About ten times bigger than a greenfinch tail feather. (I have had a few of those). Three times the size of a black bird. As long as, but much wider than, a pheasant's tail feather. My human pet, Celia, and Lesley, the pet belonging to Opus1 and Opus2 (see past comments) brought it back from a walk for me. (Humans are social animals. I am pleased that Celia has found a friend to play with. It makes her less dependent upon me and William.)
The gigantic feather set me off into a wonderful day dream. I am slinking along the bank of a clear rushing river - gleaming black, huge paws soft and silent as silk, nose drinking in the scent of a summer day, tail twitching very slightly at the tip. The river flags are in full yellow flower. Water lilies bloom where the current is not too fast. Purple loosestrife adorns the bank. And on the river itself is a noble swan. It is the most magnificent creature gleaming white against the water. It sails along serene and magnificent. The image of beauty and calm.
With one bound I leap into the river, landing skillfully upon its back, grabbing it in a killer bite at the back of the neck. Blood gushes. It fights back but I am (in the dream) more powerful than a mere bird, however big. Like a powerful black panther, I hang on despite its struggles. Then its bright black eyes begin to dim dim, its movements become more feeble, and it slowly sinks below the water. A dying swan. With strong sweeps of my paw I paddle to the river side, crushing the loosestrife as I drag this noble prey to the bank. I am the greatest hunter in the world. I wake to the single feather.
Celia says this is a disgusting blog. As I have said before - she doesn't understand me.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Why do cats love to hunt?


My game bag is currently truly impressive. I am getting faster and better at catching and killing rabbits. My score now stands at about 20. Rabbits are take-away meals for cats like me. Celia says that the garden is now strewn with corpses. I don't know why she should complain. I'd bring them into the house, except that she has installed a cat flap which is just too small. Earlier in the summer (so called) I carried in several youngsters, mostly dead but some alive. But the rabbits are now young adults and I just can't squeeze them through. What does she expect me to do? Bury them, as if I was a dog?
Sometimes I eat a bit of them. Sometimes I don't. Occasionally William eats a bit too. It just depends on how we feel. We do not hunt to eat. Of course, were we living in the wild we would. But because we have plenty of cat food, we just hunt. Mostly I just go and do it. But, when I feel philosophical about it, I try to think why I do it. It's a drive inside me. An instinct. And the glorious moment when I spring into the whole sequence of eye, stalk, pounce, grab and bite, just thrills me. A great cascade of excitement and joy runs through me from the tip of my nose through my whole body down to the last centimetre of my tail. This moment is what I was meant to do. This is what I am - a predator. At that moment I am fulfilling my true destiny.
The only flaw in this glorious life is Celia the Moaner. She whinges ceaselessly. If I bring in a living rabbit, she grabs it with a towel and takes it away. (I don't think she realises that I scoot out a bit later, sniff the air, and go straight to where it is and grab it again. Mind you, occasionally she can hear the rabbit screaming with terror. She hates that though I find the screams immensely thrilling.) She's not much better about the dead ones. "It's like the Somme battlefield. It's disgusting," she said to Ronnie. Her tone of voice was disagreeable, very disagreeable, but I know for a fact that she dislikes the way rabbits eat her vegetables. She bags the corpses and throws them in the dustbin. She complains that I don't eat them. If she feels like that, why doesn't she eat them? Many humans enjoy rabbit pie.
I have added a picture of a particularly fine specimen that I left near the car. She says it is revolting to put a corpse on a blog. I say it is a trophy not a corpse. I am proud of it. I wanted to pose with it, one paw uplifted in triumph but she refused to take the shot. She thought it might make readers feel she was an accessory to murder. What hypocrite she is.
She is a kill-joy (literally) on the topic of me and rabbits.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Who's the cat addict? Is it love or is it addiction?


Cat hoarders are definitely cat addicts. But what the 'normal" cat carer like Celia. Is she an addict? Ronnie claims she is. He even wrote a book titled One Hundred Ways to Live with a Cat Addict. He claims she is obsessed with me and William and neglects him to care for us. He is particularly upset by the way she often leaves the marital bed half way through the night to come and sleep in my bed in the spare room. (I enjoy the compliment but I wish she wouldn't take up so much room.)
He claims she shows all the threefold signs of addiction - a mental obsession with cats (writing this blog for instance), an emotional attachment which means she hates leaving us for the day (like today when she is going to London), and a physical need to be cuddled by us (William really doesn't like this side of her).
I feel that her reactions are entirely proper and normal. She puts our welfare first as a good human servant should. She defers to us. She shops for the food we prefer. She looks after our simple physical needs. Cleans up the litter tray twice a day (important), grooms us daily (particularly William who is long haired), treats us regularly for fleas, treats us regularly for worms (we are both hunters), and vaccinates us each year. It's the least she should do. These are the duties of a human pet. I consider this nothing but our due.
OK so she thinks of us almost every five minutes. She fusses when I stay out late hunting. She gets anxious if she doesn't know where we are. She wants to cuddle us more than we want to cuddle her. There may be some dependancy in that but so what? Isn't that natural from an inferior species? This isn't and never could be an equal relationship.
It is not cat addiction. It is the proper behaviour between inferior human and superior cat.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Who's the cat addict? Cat hoarders, of course.


After William told me he thought I had a catnip problem and suggested Catnip Anonymous, I really gave it some thought. I looked at my catnip use and decided that, although I enjoyed the occasional binge, I was just a recreational user. I mean, I am young and healthy, and if I want to get legless with catnip why not? Where's the problem with that. I enjoy a sniff. Or two. Or even several. Lots of cats do. Doing catnip doesn't necessarily mean you are an addict.
But addiction doesn't have to be about substance use. There are behavioural addictions - human, of course. Some humans seem to be addicted to cat abuse. They shout and scream and throw things at us, when we are relieving ourselves on a nice bit of freshly dug earth in their gardens.
Others are codependant about cats. They can't get enough of them. They became cat hoarders with 70 cats in the house. William came from just such a household. There was a whole basket of kittens, and 60 adult cats. They were sitting on the sofa, under the sofa, on every window sill and ledge, every chair and table. Everywhere you looked there were cats.
William says it was awful. The cats couldn't get away from each other. As every cat knows, we like to keep a proper distance between ourselves. Friendly cats may snuggle up together, but most cats space themselves out - like these two cats on a housing estate in Nailsworth. (Celia is always photographing cats and she was just driving past these two and noticed their spacing - friendly but not too friendly.) Keeping a proper distance is how we deal with too much company. Being close is nice for humans but stressful for us. We can behave in a sociable way but we are not pack animals like dogs. We hunt alone.
Cat hoarders say they love cats but they make life very very difficult for us. Often they run out of money and so the cats in their care (if you can call it that) are disease ridden. William had fleas, lice, earmites and infectious giardia when Celia took him home. It cost her £800 just to restore him to health.
Cat hoarders are in denial. It's not love. It's cat addiction.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

I've got a new dealer.


All drug users need reliable dealers and it can be tricky finding the good stuff. Some of the catnip sold in pet shops has been cut with artificial chemicals. Indeed some sell sprays that are entirely artificial. I don't go along with the idea that catnip can be safely made in laboratories. I don't do the stuff in cans. It's too hard line for me and I don't trust it.
What I enjoy doing is organic pure and natural catnip, made into small bundles with a bit of string attached so I can pull it around. That's exactly what came through the post the other day. My new dealer, called Maureen, lives in Lancashire, rescues cats for Cats Protection. That's one of her rescue cats, Duffy, in the picture. (There are more on www.prestoncpl.com ) He looks a bit like me - not quite so handsome, of course.
Maureen makes a mean catnip mouse. I mean she calls it a mouse. It is actually a little sack with a string attached. Mmmmm. I took a good long sniff and it went down well. I could feel it hit my lungs and that curious feeling of irresponsibility and crazy kittenhood, began to course through my body.
Non drug users won't know what I mean. Some cats stay clean and sober all their life. They just don't get turned on by the stuff. But catnip users know these clean and sober cats are missing a lot. I clasped the new mouse in my front paws and lay on my back and thought all sorts of weird deep thoughts. Then I scrabbled with my back legs, chewed it, thrust my nose as near to it as I could and inhaled. Of course I inhaled. Don't believe those cats that say they didn't inhale. If you don't inhale, you don't get the hit and where's the point in that?
William, who was peeved that I monopolised both the mice, told me I should join Catnip Anonymous. He thinks I've got a drug problem. He's very judgemental but I know for a fact he likes a sniff on the side, when he can get it. He hides his drug using. I am open about mine. Who's the addict, then?
Phwoar....that catnip.

Friday, August 03, 2007

George cheated... he tried to take credit for my weasel


This is my weasel. I, William the bold hunter, caught it. Over the years I have caught several. It takes skill. They are very fierce, fast moving and, if you get it wrong, they can give a very vicious bite. They go for the throat. Luckily, I have never yet got it that wrong. This one I caught the other day, and left on the lawn. Because I was brought up without a cat flap I don't bring prey inside. (It's difficult enough doing the cat flap without trying to do it with a mouse or a weasel in my mouth. I only got the hang of it a couple of years ago when Celia installed one for the first time.)
Anyway I caught the weasel. I brought it home. Placed it on the lawn to admire it. (You don't eat weasels unless you are starving.) And what happened? George bagged it and brought it through the cat flap and deposited it in the dining room. Celia and Ronnie came back to find it. "Look what George has done" she crooned. "He's caught a weasel. He's such a good hunter." I felt sick to my stomach at this betrayal.
It was left to Ronnie to put her right (as he often does). "Nonsense. George may have brought it in, but William caught it," he said stoudly defending my hunting prowess. I like Ronnie. We have a man to man relationship.
To mark my skill, they put it back on the lawn and took this picture. Not every cat can catch a weasel. George for one can't. He's just a rotten cheat.

Help for cats whose humans show behaviour problems.

This blog is devoted to the study of human behaviour. We cats, who live with this sometimes unpredictable and always feeble minded species, can benefit from seeing their behaviour in its proper scientific context. The study of feline dilemmas, training problems, and difficulties with humans, can only benefit all of us. All of us train our humans - to buy the right food, for instance, but many of us do not have knowledge of how to improve our training methods. The human species is obviously not as intelligent as the cat, but nevertheless can learn quite a lot - if properly managed. Topics of interest include the use of claw and order, purring as a human reward, rubbing your human up the right way, when to bite, spraying as a method of making our wishes known, ignoring the human, human harassment, human inattention and sheer human stupidity. I welcome your questions. Photos can be sent via my secretary's website, www.celiahaddon.com This blog has been chosen as one of the top 50 feline blogs by Online VetTechprogramms.org