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Showing posts with label beds. Show all posts
Showing posts with label beds. Show all posts

Saturday, May 20, 2017

SOS! Vet on the horizon! Going Incatnito!

Dear George,
I need urgently few suggestions on how to go incatnito! Yes, you heard me right: “in-cat-nito” in order to avoid getting to my scheduled visit to the vet. Like any other cat I purr-foundly detest these visits so I try to hide but my humans somehow manage to find me every time. So, for now I thought going incatnito around the house ….maybe something like a “faux cat” that look like a piece of décor? Or maybe I should go as a dog or bunny or something in disguise? Ugh! So much trouble but I do not want to go to the vet! That’s it! Please take a look at the photo attached and tell me if I look like a piece of décor!
Any other suggestions on how to avoid the trip to the vet are welcome!
Yours…..in disguise
Leo

Dear Leo,
This isn't good enough. You do not look like a pineapple. Nor are you a convincing china cat!  Far too elegant. Further in-cat-nito efforts are required. I recommend the following places to hide.
  • Under the bed. Humans do look there but if you squeeze further enough in at an odd angle they may miss you.
  • Under the cooker if there is a gap.
  • Between the washing machine and the drying machine in the utility room. You need a cap but not a big one.
  • On a chair, which has been pushed under a table. This is a simple place to hide that many humans miss.
  • Underneath the bedclothes. Better hope that your human doesn't sit on you by mistake.
  • Back of the wardrobe behind some large boots.
  • Top of the wardrobe - if your human has never seen you there before. Won't work if they already know you chill out there.
Yours
George

Saturday, March 04, 2017

Of cats training their human pets.... "cat paralysis"

-->Dear George,Last week letter and Tommy’s story inspired me to write this one from my own experience. If you remember about a year ago I was rescued from the streets by this couple with their clear intention to take me to a clinic and treat my many wounds (both physically and emotionally) and then to put me up for adoption. I saw them screening very carefully everybody manifesting a wish to take me in.
Of course in the process they fell in love with me and today I’m running their house! Even more, I didn’t need to train them through the “reward & punishment” cycle as they were quite well trained already but I started training them in what I would call “cat paralysis,” meaning I jump on one’s lap and that person can’t move until I get tired of sitting there so I leave….releasing them to freely move around! For whatever reason it didn’t work well with mummy (she can’t stay still – quite unnerving) but worked wonders with daddy (as you can see in the photo attached). What it’s very rewarding in fact is that I can get as many treats as I want and as often as I want. Why? Because they think they outsmart me and when daddy goes really numb from staying still he’s asking mummy to give me some treats hoping I’ll be tempted to jump down from his lap so he can move! The whole scenario makes me laugh my head off as I get everything I want this way…..being loved, cuddled up and eating treats!
Ah! I love my human pets! So, George what do you think? Maybe we should write a book about this special training program so other cats will benefit from it? With cheers & a good laugh  
Chico

Dear Chico, 
I am always keen to learn about tricks that can be taught to humans and about new techniques for doing this. "Cat paralysis" is a really good idea, not unlike the way humans teach dogs (poor idiots) to "stay." You seem to have cured that particularly irritating human behaviour of shifting around when we are sleeping on them.  Well, at least you have your male pet trained. Now start working on the female.
I wonder if you could transfer this technique to the bed. I suffer from the way my human, whom I generously allow to share the double bed with me, will thrash about in her sleep. I have to keep waking up and moving to get out of her way. If you find you can stop your male human moving around in the bed, please let me know urgently.
Yours
George. 

Saturday, February 18, 2017

The Valentine Cat.


Dear George, 
I will never understand why some people celebrate Valentine’s Day and some will not. It’s such a nice, romantic celebration….or am I wrong? Hmm! Guess, it’s more of a personal or cultural choice. Anyway, yesterday as I was waiting for my mommy to come home, I’ve read a little book entitled “The Valentine Cat” – very touchy, very romantic. 
It is the story of a little, black kitten with a white heart on its forehead. The kitty was abandoned in the woods by irresponsible, cruel people but after many “adventures” (some good and some scary) in the end the kitty got to live in the royal palace with the Princess and its rescuer, a young artist. I must admit… I had tears in my eyes reading the story but the happy ending made me feel very good and optimistic. 
I believe I am irremediably romantic. And I was thinking that we, the cats, could (and should) celebrate Valentine’s Day too! I mean probably not in the same way some humans celebrate it as we all are “fixed and snipped” but platonically involved in a nice dinner and meow-conversation. What do you think? George, I’ll be very bold now as I have to ask: would you be my Valentine? I set the table (as you can see in the photo) and we shall have fresh fish for dinner!
Romantically yours,  
Didina

Dear Didina,
Platonically? Yes, if time and space purrmitted, I would have been your Valentine. But they don't, which reminds me of the Andrew Marvell poem, the only mathematical love poem I know:
The Definition of Love.....
      As lines, so loves oblique may well
      Themselves in every angle greet;
      But ours so truly parallel,
     Though infinite, can never meet.
Purrsonally I think there are some humans that would benefit from the snip. It would make bedtime so much calmer for us - none of that irritating thrashing about which interferes with a cat's need for sleep. And no noisy human kittens pulling our tails. Why can't we just neuter them? Make Valentine's Day platonic for them as well as us.
Yours in a grump
George 

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Hello, 
My name is Teddy .. I am 3 years old and the most adorable long haired ginger male cat . I have a brother called Dolly he's very thin and unattractive (we are true brothers and came to live with our mum at the same time ) as soon as we arrived our human mother completely and utterly adored us .. Me probably more than dolly .. We were very spoiled well loved kittens .. Our human Mother's Day revolved around us... We had the best of everything. 
My problem is I cannot stand my human mother. She tries to pick me up and I push my paws into her to get her away . I stay out of the house as long as possible only popping in once a day for food , then I leave as quickly as I can. She always gets excited when she sees me. Because I am so very big fluffy and beautiful. I never want to spend time with her or in the house. Where as my skinny brother adores her and stays in the home all the time and even dribbles when he's on her lap! Yuck.. So my question is why do I hate her so much? Have you got any tips on how I can be like Dolly and love my human mother.
Yours perfectly 
Teddy-Bear

Dear Teddy,
Let's face it. Some of us just don't like our human pets. We have them because they are useful - for feeding us, providing warm beds (though they take up too much room), and a house for when it is bad weather. That's just how it is.
I wouldn't bother too much about your feelings. Remember, we are the superior species. Humans are lucky that we want to spend any time with them at all. But there are moments when it would be worth faking love - before feeding time and at night when it is cold and you want to sleep next to her for her warmth.
So try to fake a purr now and again. It could pay off. She will probably be so pathetically grateful for any attention, that more food will come your way.
And if she harasses you for a cuddle just give her a little nip.
Yours George
PS. Dolly can't help being a creep. It's just her genes. You've got the lone gene and she's got the snuggle gene.

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Honeymoons are no fun for cats.


Dear George,
I’m not sure if there are official safety rules in place for cats’ transportation but, I definitely hope so since my Mom managed to cross a busy downtown street carrying me wrapped in a towel – Yes! against all odds - as you can see in the photo (I covered her face as I don’t want to get her in trouble – she’s still my Mom after all).
You see, this summer she got married and for this useless and meaningless event (at least in my life) she took off more than a week leaving me with my human grandparents. When she came back to take me home I was so mad at her that I peed in my carrier bag!
Last night I heard her saying she’ll go on a honeymoon! And now I don’t have a carrier bag anymore as she threw it away! But, George, firstly what is a honeymoon? I’ve heard of a full moon or new moon or, even a blue moon but never about a honey moon?
How far is this honey moon? Secondly, if she plans to take me with her this time is there any special equipment for a cat to travel to outer space? I hope she’ll not take me to her honey moon wrapped in a towel! What do you think George?
A bit worried
Stanley

Dear Stanley,
You are right to be worried about transport. It's not safe for a human to carry a cat like this. What if you just wriggled out of her arms and ran away.You might have got lost in the traffic, or even run over. She needs to get a secure cat carrier.
Honeymoons? Humans really are odd. Their mating habits are varied, ranging from pair bonding to one night stands (so called though this could only be literally achieved by medication!). As a species we do it better. Our female queens come on heat, go out in search of toms, mate furiously with several and have kittens a few weeks later usually from multiple fathers. That way we get the best chance of healthy kittens. If one of the toms isn't up to scratch (so to speak) and sires a weak kitten, there is always others in the litter that are strong.
Honeymoons? Part of the pair bonding ritual, once associated with the chance to have sex; nowadays just a nice holiday after an expensive ritual wedding. Don't go on the honeymoon. Heaving mattresses are no fun for cats that need a decent night's sleep.
Yours 
George.
PS. This blog is late due to the unforgivable absence of my secretary for most of the week.

Saturday, May 07, 2016

Born to be wild.... or perhaps not.

Dear George, 
Is this a valid statement or not so much? We were born of a feral cat but in a human house! Does that make us wild? We are five kitten - seven week old now - and quite social. We are ready for adoption (if anybody is interested). Our mother, who actually let this nice, generous human touch her, is getting to the clinic to be spayed. We heard our “temporary” human mother saying that she won’t release our feral mother back to the wild since she’s quite used to human touch now. But, what about us?
Are we going to be OK? One of the "girls' in the gang is getting used to catnip toys as you can see in the first photo.
Any wise advice George?
In a very playful mood,
The Three Musketeers (out of five)

Dear Kittens,
You are getting the best education you could have for a happy future  - warm shelter,  regular meals, soft beds, and attentive human servants. Train them using rewards (purrs, rubs, and the opportunity to stroke you) and punishments (hisses, ignoring them, and if necessary swipe and bite).
Start as you mean to go on. An intelligent kitten will have trained his human within the first four weeks to feed the correct food, change the litter tray regularly, and play enjoyable games with him. And all this without the human knowing that she has been trained.
Don't be too selfish. Allow them to share the bed with you. They make good hot water bottles.
Love 
George.
 





Saturday, January 09, 2016

Waiting for George’s message…..a miracle happened!


Dear George,
You might recall that I had to (I was forced to) move in with three other cats just because my human decided to move in with someone. And, of course, my silly human couldn’t find a single, lonely and boring person; my human had to find another human who had not one but three cats! We asked ourselves many times “What is wrong with humans?” and my guess is that we’ll never find out! I wasn’t too happy about the situation but we, the cats, found ourselves each a favorite spot in the house and tried not to interact with each other too much! My favorite spot is the bed in the master bedroom where I’m trying hard “to push out” the intruder (I mean…the other human who now claims my human). However, a miracle happened George! Waiting for your Christmas message we found ourselves lying down together peacefully and happily (as you can see in the picture)! For one thing George I’m happy that Celia failed in her duties to you this time.
Now I need your advice on how to keep the momentum going?
Yours truly,
Vegas

Dear Vegas,
The failure of my Christmas message (due to human incompetence and a dead router) had one good effect then! What a happy and relaxed scene. Moving in with other cats can be so stressful, particularly if for cats that are natural loners. But you four felines seem to have integrated well. Just make sure that the new cats don't move in with you. Four is enough, I feel. 
Keep the momentum going by natural feline courtesy. Accept the fact that some cats do not want intimacy and would prefer agreeable acquaintanceship rather than close friendship. Make sure your human servants don't force you to eat from the same food bowl. If they do, it should always be full so that you can take it in turns. Better still, they should feed you at a decent cat-preferred distance from each other. Humans can be mean about litter trays. Four or even five litter trays, so that you don't have to share and they don't get dirty too quickly, would be ideal. We like litter that is generously two and a half inches deep!
I have had a quiet time since the end of the Christmas holiday. She, my pet, has been hunched over the computer studying for her exam. She has also asked me to point out that one of her ebooks (co-researched by me but without any acknowledgement of my part in it, shame on her) is available FREE from Monday January 11 on UK amazon here. She is not sure if it will be available in other countries!
Yours
George.

Saturday, December 19, 2015

The power of a purrrrrrrrrr......

Dear George,
I have been a bit worried about my mummy.
She doesn't seem to be quite herself and seems to have to leave me more often at different times.
Still, at least, food appears regularly and she combs me and plays with me sometimes when I don't even want to!
I try to behave and come on her bed every night and she still gets up if I desperately need attention at 5am, so nothing really has changed, but I do worry if her routine changes.
What do you think carry on as usual, and hope she seems more like her old self in the New Year. We pussycats don't like change!!!.
With love from,
Toby.


Dear Toby,
My friend, Tilly the Ugliest Cat, went through a somewhat similar experience with Celia. Horrible routine changes and she could tell that Celia was worried and upset. Celia would disappear then come home smelling as if she had been in a vet clinic.
Try to see this as an opportunity for snuggling close to your human, particularly if she is taking a lot of rest (which she should be). She may smell a bit odd but she is basically the same loving pet as she always was. We cats are great healers and this is your chance to practice purr therapy. There is nothing like it to make your human pet feel calmer and less frightened.
She will recover, when the veterinary treatment is over, and the normal routine will back. So practice that healing purr. Purring heals.
Yours
George.

Saturday, September 26, 2015

My bed is not for.... sharing

Dear George,
I don’t think there is a cat that likes to share her bed and I’m no exception! Just that my case is much more sensible….and here is why! My mummy got a boyfriend!
Yes! All is good as we know humans like to keep each other company and I don’t want to get into more “details” here but, my problem is why do I have to share my bed with him? Sharing is not exactly the case as he took over my half of the bed. That’s totally, completely and absolutely unacceptable! When I visit him at the cottage (I must admit he has a beautiful cottage) I bring my own food, my own water and my own bed!
So, why can’t he bring his own sleeping bag? Excuse me? I’m not asking him to bring his own food….I don’t mind to share my food with him! Nor do I ask him to bring his own water (maybe he should as it might be a bit difficult for him to drink from my water fountain). But….a sleeping bag? George, do you think by buying a sleeping bag for my mummy would solve the problem? There is plenty of floor space that they can share.
I want my bed (at least half) back!
Shumba

Dear Shumba,  
You have put your paw on a Major Human Dilemma. We cats are generous. We share the bed with our human, even though a human takes up a lot of space. (Mind you, they do act as hot water bottles for us too). But when a stranger intrudes, there is less space. Worst still, there may be undercover activities of a kind not compatible with feline rest and relaxation.....
What advice can I give? Euthanasia is out of the question, alas. It would be just too difficult. Rehoming him would be the best thing to do but where would you find another human to adopt him? You could try to show your disgust by never approaching him, sitting with your back to him, and refusing all his attempts to be nice. But your human seems to have bonded with him so she might completely refuse to rehome him. 
So you are going to have to accept his presence. The sleeping bag idea is not going to work. But not all is lost. You can reduce the undercover activities by a) sleeping between the two humans: b) showing an intense and embarassing interest in their activities: c) purporting to believe that this is just a game and jumping wildly on the body parts below the covers. Aim for the groin whenever possible.
Yes, I know that this may result in your being evicted from the bedroom. In which case you yowl and scratch the door throughout the night.
Best of luck,
George.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Deepak Chopra .... of cats!


Dear George,
Reading past letters I realized that kittydom is a buzz! It is such a joy to see cats becoming entrepreneurs, opening up businesses, taking vocational training or simply….improving their body, mind and spirit by taking up Tai Chi, Qi Gong or Zen meditation! We do really rule the world and, I can see why….the future is ours! I had my “aha” moment when I took up yoga! I even developed an important and, in my humble opinion, revolutionary asana called “Cat Slipping” as you can see in the photo attached! One can practice this pose throughout the day, anywhere and everywhere! My preferred location? Master bedroom! 
Favorite spot? For me…. my “daddy’s” side of the bed! Time? Especially when he’s ready to go to sleep! Timing is important and mine is just perfect! Benefits from practicing it? One is more relaxed, but mind sharper, one will look younger in minutes and above all…seeing your human’s perplexed face not knowing what to do! This is priceless! You don’t push Deepak Chopra off his chair, do you?
But, my daddy dared to push me aside last night and I’m much infuriated.
I’m taking three deep breaths now and start working on a plan how to relocate him on a couch in the living room or even better….down in the basement!
George, any suggestions?
Namaste
Lenny

Dear Lenny,
Pushing you off the chair is unacceptable behaviour in a human. No wonder you are infuriated. You need to climb back immediately and start re-inserting yourself on the chair slowly edging him off. If this doesn't work, get on the back of the armchair and start forcible grooming of his head. If he has a bald patch, groom this furiously. If not, rearrange his hair with tongue and claw. This often makes a human leave.
Forcing a human off your bed is going too far. I think he would be lonely on the downstairs couch or in the basement. Human welfare matters. Well behaved humans should be allowed to share the bed with us, as long as they don't take up too much space. Grooming them in the early hours or merely slowly moving them into a better position using your asana while they are asleep effectively repositions the human body.
Namaste
George.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

March break and.....humans

-->
Dear George,
I learned about your blog from a backyard friend and I'm quite happy I did as now...I found the right place to ask for advice and to complain about my human. But, first - can anybody explain to me what March break is? I know the schools are closed for a week or so and I assume it is because kids are behaving badly and teachers need a break to recover mentally and physically! I also assume that teachers can't hide under the bed or desk when the kids are around! I got that too. But why would humans pack and go away for March break when they don't even have kids? That's what I'd like to know George? Why my mommy went away leaving me behind stuck indoor and having a catsitter to look after me? Plus, she got me a deaf and possibly blind one. I'm pretty sure this was the case since all my efforts to get outside went unnoticed. No reaction to my meows or scratches at the back door. What mommy would leave her kid with a deaf and blind sitter?  Do you think I behave so badly that she needed a break? I don't think so! And I want revenge!
Yours....quite upset
Mouse
PS. my name is another story altogether ....for another letter

Dear Mouse,  
Your mommy has failed in her duty - which is to make herself available for you all the time, any time, day, night, weekend, weekday, summer, winter and spring (March included). To put it bluntly, she is not a good servant. You need to put some time and effort into training her better so that she knows her place in the household. 
As for the deaf, blind cat sitter. This beggars belief! If the cat sitter is still with you, then I suggest you leave a highly visible faecal message (a poop) on her pillow.  If she is in the bed at the time so much the better.  If she has already left, do the same for your mommy.
The amusing thing about this is that a cat behaviourist will tell her, you are pooping on the bed because you were upset about being left. Well, I guess that is true. But you will be having your revenge as well.
And, as every cat knows, revenge is a dish best eaten warm.
Yours 
George. 
PS. That carpet suits you. 

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Trouble with other cats in the home? The key to feline serenity is detachment.


Dear George,
I’m Captain Von Trapp and, yes, I can meow but I can’t sing. And thanks God….I don’t have 7 or 10 children but, I was blessed with a housekeeper, an assistant and two human pets. Of course, we are rescues! As soon as we got to our new headquarters I took over the command of the household. Thanks God my human pets are easily trainable and willing to please (as you can see in the picture). They are of good nature but I don’t think they know Von Trapp family’s story. They named “my Maria” (the housekeeper) “Queen Abby” or something like that (I’m too upset to even remember) and now she really thinks she’s the Alpha cat. Instead of taking care of my needs she runs up and down the stairs like a tornado and she won’t listen to my meows. Another problem is my assistant! They named him “Storm” – is this a proper name for an assistant?  I don’t think so. And, to make things worse…Storm has no skills. I think he is a gypsy at heart! He wonders far from home and gets everybody worried. I don’t know what to do!
George, I need your advice! Do you think “yodeling” will be more appropriate to make my needs known?

Yodel-a- d-ee
Captain Von Trapp

Dear Captain,
One of the mysteries of feline life is that it is so easy to train human females and so difficult to train feline females! Many of the techniques we use on humans - loud purring as a reward, scratching as a punishment - are not so effective on other cats. Other cats are likely just to scratch back. I have my doubts about yodelling as a technique..... It works well for humans: less well for feisty female cats!
Within our own feline community, the best way to cope with others is to use spacing and time sharing of resources. Work out your own space in the household - where you like to sleep, when you use the litter tray, what time you sleep on that patch of sunlight in the windowsill and where you have your space on the human bed. And stick to this.
Train your humans to put down enough litter trays and at least two different locations for food and for water (not too close to each other), and avoid Queen Abby and Storm as much as possible. If you refuse to play the game of who-is-top-cat, she can't play it without your
participation.Their idiotic activities are not your concern. Ignore them both.
Live your own life within the household. Keep the humans focussed on your needs. And leave Abby and Storm to get on with it. Detachment is the key to feline serenity.
Purrs and rubs
George
PS. Apologies to my fans. I missed last week's deadline due to my secretary being ill. I thought about firing her and rehoming myself then decided to be more patient with the poor thing.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Why am I clawing visitors?

Dear George,
 My name is Golab and I’m a rescue. I was adopted from a shelter by this wonderful family, my new human parents.  I don’t know how old I am but I can’t be too old as I still remember the abuse I suffered before I was rescued. All is too fresh in my memory. 
I love my humans and they love me. I’m happy and at peace as you can see in the photo attached. I’m treated like royalty. I take pride in my humans and my home.  But, I have an issue; for whatever reasons I claw everybody else visiting my humans.
I know my humans are worried and perhaps upset. I don’t know how to tell them that I’m afraid of other people, I don’t trust other people and each time they have company I panic that the company will take them away from me and I’ll be abandoned and abused again. I’m not possessive or jealous, I’m just scared.
George, the problem is that they will have family from overseas visiting soon and they are thinking of renting a flat just for me so they will come daily to visit me and spend time together. This is very generous of them but I don’t want to live in a flat for three months. George, this is a very serious matter and I need your expertise.
Firstly, why do you think I act like this….clawing everybody visiting them?
Secondly, what should I do? Is there anything I can do or they can do so?
How can we all live in peace (visitors included)?
In distress
Golab

Dear Golab,
Some of us are one-human cats. We love our human pets, but we don't love or even much like any other human. Well, it's natural, isn't it? Those of us who were in animal shelters have often seen the worst side of human nature - humans throwing things at us, humans shouting, and sometimes cats have even been tortured in the microwave by sick human beings. Feral humans can be vile,much more evil than any animals.
I expect it took you time to learn to trust again. Now you do trust your new human pets, which is wonderful. I am sure that they have responded to your growing confidence and love.
Now it is time for them to look after you. Renting a special flat for you isn't exactly what you want. You'd prefer if they rented the flat for these visiting humans! However, that might not happen. Perhaps they would think of a cattery - not much fun for you, but if you have been in a rescue shelter you probably at least know the score.
If none of this happens, find a safe area in your home - under your humans' bed, on a high cupboard in the spare room, in a box cut to make a hidey hole or perhaps on a bookshelf somewhere. Settle in there. If you can, purrsuade your humans to keep the visitors away from your space. Maybe they could even give you a room of your own for a bit with your own litter tray, food and water, and a familiar bed. A Feliway diffuser would help too.
Tell them to tell the visitors to ignore you. If they are staying a long time, you may feel confident enough to come out and take a look at them. 
Yours
George


Saturday, February 15, 2014

Love is in the air - try cheek to cheek.

4
Dear George,  
My name is Socks and I’m a rescue - one year old. Most of what I recall from my 1st year of life is living in a cage in a shelter. One lucky day a young and beautiful woman came to work at the shelter as part of her practice o
volunteering as she is studying to become a veterinarian. She worked with me and of course she felt in love with me and last week she took me home. That was the luckiest day of my life and I was very, very happy.
She is kind and loves me but, I’m so terrified by the idea that I might be abandoned again that I’m afraid to show her any sign of affection. I don’t want to be hurt again for trusting and loving humans; it happened before to me and that memory is too fresh.
Now with Valentine’s Day approaching I dream of a candlelight dinner with her!
I dream of sharing little kisses, loving care and, of course sharing a steak or a mouse whatever she’ll prefer. She thinks I’m shy …but I’m only afraid I’ll be again lonely and abandoned. Do you think it’s appropriate to ask her for a date and a candlelight dinner for Valentine’s?  Or is it too early for me to show my true feelings for her?
Do you think I’m too young to date? I heard someone saying “you are never too old to love”? That means one can love from a very young age, right?
George, I need all your help as my manners are “shelters manners” not very polished.
I don’t know how to be romantic but I love my human.
Happy Valentine’s Day to all.
In love and…. grateful,
Socks

Dear Socks, 
I think I can help. First, the question of meals for two. Sharing a Valentine meal with humans is fraught with difficulty. If you bring them a fresh mouse, they are likely to shriek, run away, or even (what a waste) take it away from you and let it free. They can't seem to appreciate the gift and have such bad manners they do not even thank you. So that definitely won't work.
Sharing her meal is possible. I suggest moving cautiously on this one. My human, when she is alone, eats at the kitchen table and I sit near her looking as attractive as I can. She dines on meat and vegetables but doesn't seem very keen on sharing either of them. (I will eat potato if it is roasted in fat). I have tried snagging the food off her plate and she takes offence. She is too selfish to share.
Sophisticats have to use other measures. I think your best bet is just lots and lots of rubs and purrs. Have you tried cheek to cheek rubbing? My human finds this very romantic. She takes off her glasses so that they don't intervene, lowers her head, and waits for me to rub my cheek against hers. So sweet.
Loud purring always goes down well. If you purr near her plate, it just might make her share a little. Snuggle close to her on the bed at night and purr through the night - her body warmth will be useful in the bad weather you are having in Canada.  
We can love at any age. So can humans. Sometimes I think the older they are, the more love they need from us. 
Love 
George


Saturday, February 01, 2014

Help! My humans snore loudly. It is ruining my sleep.

Dear George, 
I do read every letter posted on your blog and I must admit I learned a lot over the years from you. Now, I need your help in a matter that I think it’s affecting my wellbeing.
But, here is my story. Lately my humans are behaving verrrrry strange. They started going to bed rather early; sometimes even before I finished my dinner. Then when they are sound asleep they are snoring like it’s no tomorrow and they toss and turn and puffs.
I don’t know what’s happening and I’m very worried as it looks like they have nightmares. Of course I can’t sleep with so much noise and I don’t know what to do.
I tried placing my paws on their nose but they have 4 nostrils and I have 2 paws so even if I’m successfully “suffocating” one …the other still snores. I tried to lightly pat their faces but no response; I jumped on one of them and then jumped on the other; Ugh! Some response! Last night I started meowing really loud and finally I woke them up.
My problem George is that they think I’m playing; they don’t understand that I can’t sleep because of them. I’m tired too. Day time I’m helping my mommy with her bookkeeping as you can see in the picture attached. At night I can’t rest because of them
Even worse….now they are planning to take me to a vet to see why I’m not sleeping at night and why I’m meowing and “playing” all night. How can I stop them? I don’t want to go to any vet and I want to sleep too.
Yours in distress
Thea

Dear Thea, 
The human body clock is odd. We are crepuscular, most active at dawn and dusk. Humans are daytime animals and will sleep like logs for eight hours throughout the night, often past the dawn. This is not natural for us. And, if the humans are snoring loudly, naturally we respond. 
I admire your suffocation technique -- though obviously it doesn't work with two humans snoring simultaneously.  You have tried jumping on them and also meowing loudly. These are imaginative techniques from your point of view and I think you should congratulate yourself on being an committed human carer.
Now we come to the difficult part which is their complete misunderstanding of what you are trying to do. Being hard asleep they do not notice the racket they are making. They see your natural reactions as unwanted interference.  So what is a sensitive cat to do?
Just pushing them off your bed is probably impossible. As I see it there are two alternatives. You could stop sleeping on their bed but this would mean sacrificing the warmth of two human bodies. It may also upset them, as human beings are often deeply attached to the idea of a cat on the bed. As a caring human owner you may feel that leaving the bed is going too far.
You could try giving yourself so much exercise during the day that you sleep more soundly at night. I suggest rushing round the house after using the litter tray, playing with their shoelaces (if they have them), running up the curtains, jumping up and down from every high surface, pulling socks out of open draws and carrying them around meowing loudly, and jumping in and out of boxes, drawers, or shopping bags. Get more active then you will sleep better. Try to entice them to play fishing rod games with you.
Stopping them snoring is just too difficult.
Yours sympathetically
George
PS. you could get them to read www.catexpert.co.uk on how to have a happy indoor cat. It would give them some ideas of how to improve your waking life. Get them to ask the vet about hyperthyroidism and Alzheimers if you are an elderly cat.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Victory! Victory! Victory!

 
Dear George,
Victory! I finally kicked out my parents from the master bedroom and the master bed, of course!
Look at me in the pictures attached to see how happy I am. But, let me tell you how I did it J  This past Monday was a culmination of about 10 days and nights with over 100% humidity and 30 degrees (Celsius).  Everybody was just exhausted by the heat and lying motionless on the bed.
That’s when a major storm hit us and by-by power; for 2 days and nights we had no electricity and no A/C. That was my chance George! I pretended that I can’t sleep unless I’m close to them and started sleeping between the two snuggling either with her or him.
By the second night neither one of them could take it anymore; the first to leave was him, of course.
He moved in a spare bedroom with a small bed; soon she followed him….but in a different spare bedroom. Ha! Ha! Ha! Not only that I have the whole master bedroom for me now ….but I managed to get them separated at night too! And this is a good thing, right?
George, the truth is that I’m in a bit of a dilemma and I need your advice. The other day I heard the human kitten (who calls himself a young professional – whatever that is) that my human parents are somewhere in Europe. That scared me a little. Do you think I kicked them too hard?
That hard that they got to Europe?  How do I bring them back?
A little scared
CAT Victoria

Dear Victoria
Many congratulations for a huge feline achievement. You have succeeded where so many of us have failed. You have managed to keep your humans off your bed altogether. This is the pinnacle of the cat master plan, the apex of human training, the gold standard for the cat-human relationship. Congratulations.
You've done it. You have proved that you are in total control.....
Now be generous. You know you can do it, so now you are free to take pity on them. Remember humans are emotional beings that need feline contact. If they cannot sleep in your company they may start suffering separation distress - becoming vocal, clinging, trying to pick you up, interrupting your sleep, harassing you for affection. They can't help it: it's just their general neediness.
This is the moment to be generous. Let them have a little bit of your bed at night.  
Yours 
George. 

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Difficulties with household staff - litter tray training

Dear George,
You know my humans, Merrie and Robin so I am writing to you for advice.  With the very cold winter they provided me with an indoor lavatory in the garage and at night moved it into the kitchen as I sleep in the breakfast room. They won't allow me on their bed any more as they say I fidget and wake them up.  When it got warmer and I was able to come and go more easily and visit my house next door without being carried because it was cold, snowy or wet, they had the cheek to remove the tray at night from the kitchen.  They thought as I was peeing in the garden again, Robin didn't want the bother of carting the tray from the garage into the kitchen.  Naturally I piddle in one corner when I wake up in the night or morning.  Why should I go out through the cat flap in the early morning when I am nearly nineteen years?  The staff have no consideration. They are putting disinfectant down  but I am continuing. 
Yours in disgust at human failings,
Lily.

Dear Lily,
We all have problems with staff. Incompetence and lack of intelligence are common human failings. There are so many human idiocies here, that I hardly know where to start.
First, the litter tray.You are an elderly cat and like other oldies (human as well as feline) you need to be able to get to the loo in time.  You should not have to struggle out in the frost in winter and the rain in the so-called British summer. So, you need a loo indoors in the warm - not too close to the food bowl. Do they have a utility room or  downstairs human lavatory that would be suitable?
Secondly... the disinfectant. Your staff are obviously totally untrained in proper cleaning. I love the smell of disinfectant and I expect you do too. Stupid humans who are smell blind think disinfectant smells of lemon or some other scent. We know that it smells of cat pee. So naturally, we pee on top of it. "Cleaning" cat pee with disinfectant is like putting up a notice "Pee here" for us cats. Tell your human to contact Celia's website on how to clean up.
In general, Lily, I wonder if your humans need more training. Human intelligence is severely limited and household staff really can't cope unless they are properly trained. Put more effort into this. 
Yours George
PS. Reclaim your bed. If you fidget, they can always sleep downstairs on the sofa or in the spare room. What is the world coming to when humans think they can take over our beds.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Co-ordinated counter surfing and the unfairness of feline life

Dear George,
Toby and I do not get on very well. But we do have something in common. We have to eat boring cat food every day. So we feel it's an important part of our lifestyle to snack on human food. 
Yesterday we made a co-ordinated effort. Toby checked the counter surfaces, while I jumped on to the higher shelf where sometimes she leaves food (as she thinks) out of our reach. She had left the cupboard door open by mistake so it was worth looking there.  By chance there were only a few fragments, alas. I ate them while Toby licked up the two spots of milk left over from when she was making breakfast porridge.
Why do they think it is acceptable to feed us the boring food when they eat chicken, steak, rich pasta sauces, cream, milk, yoghurt.... 
Yours with a growing sense of injustice,
Tilly the Ugliest Cat in the Shelter

Dear Tilly,
Co-ordinated kitchen theft sounds good to me but for one unfortunate fact. As cats never share, if you find some tasty snack you will have to gobble it up fast before Toby gets it. However, in view of the unfairness when we compare what humans give themselves and the pathetic food they give us, counter surfing is a must for any cat who wishes to rebalance the food odds.
The human species has no real sense of justice or fairness. Have you noticed, for instance, how much space they take up on the bed. How they attempt to push us to the margins of it or banish us to the bottom of the bed, refusing to share the pillow.
It's the same thing with arm chairs. My human, having assigned me an armchair which is furthest from the log fire, expects me to sit there while she luxuriates in the warmth nearer the flames. Naturally, when she is not sitting down, I sit in what she thinks is her place. It's mine, not hers. She is deluded. But what is so unfair is that she then uses brute force to push me off it so that she can sit there.
I am currently working on a new technique which involves inserting my body at the side of hers. She thinks I am being friendly. I simper a bit and purr loudly. What I am actually doing is slowly pushing her to one side with the aim of first sharing, and then completely taking over the best chair in the room.
Yours in commiseration,
George

Saturday, February 09, 2013

Cat beds - our ideas of what makes a good one.

Dear George,
I don’t want to take too much of your time but I have one question or maybe two.  You know that I’m a very spoiled kitty. However, I trained my humans surprisingly well for a young, little rescue that I’m.  For example: they let me taste the water they drink (directly from their glasses), food they eat and when they are playing cards …..I have a special chair so I can sit and watch them playing. When it comes to sleeping arrangements….I usually sleep on my mommy’s chest until she’s sound at sleep and then …..I slide down slowly between them. Well, lately they gifted me with so many cat beds (as in the photos) that I don’t know what to think. I have a bed in every single room of the house including kitchen. As I find this a bit strange, my question to you is: what could they be up to that they do not want me in the bed between them at night or are they trying to show me with respect that I’m the Alpha cat and run the show? Should I accommodate?
Yours truly but ….a bit confused
Zoe

Dear Zoe, 
Your humans are doing the right thing. We cats cannot have too many beds - their idea of beds and our idea of beds. Their idea of a cat bed is like the one in the photo. Warm cosy, with nice soft material and high sides so that it avoids drafts. But your dratted humans, I see, have put it on the floor. The ideal cat bed is sited a bit higher up. We like to look down rather than up at our pet humans.
Our idea of cat beds is, of course, rather more diverse than theirs. The following are cat beds: the double beds which we allow our humans to share; any other large beds in the house; sofas; armchairs; piles of dirty laundry; piles of clean laundry, preferably in a warm airing cupboard; any open drawer full of clothes; the surface of any chair pushed under the table; the surface of any chair anywhere; all windowsills; inside any cupboard where the doors are left open; the top of a kitchen cupboard if we feel like it; the top of the wardrobe if we feel like it; the side of an Aga or any wood burning stove; any kitchen surface that takes our fancy; in front of open fires; empty cardboard boxes of all kinds; the desk area next to the computer; the keyboard of the computer when we feel like it; the top of the stairs... You get the idea.
What your humans think they are doing is a bit more puzzling, as we have to allow for their limited cognition. My guess is that they might feel they would like more room on your double bed at night so have put a cat bed in the bedroom. This is ridiculous, of course. If you are kind enough to share your double bed with them, they must take the space they are given and be grateful for it. Do not accomodate them: it is their duty to accomodate you and your preferences.
The alternative possibility is that they really have understood that we like a lot of choice. If so they are pets in a million.
Yours thoughtfully
George
PS. Add your own suggestions....

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