Thursday, March 21, 2013

The Cat Report (W.3/20-13)

Finally back from the trip and mostly recovered from the cold, so got to see the cats today for the first time in a while (2/27). Since then Heidi and Pascale got adopted (yay, Pascale!, and yay the good people who gave her a chance), Butterscotch got sent back, and Max the Magnificent came and went.

That leaves us with only four cats: EDNA JANELEMURATATTOO, and newcomer OLIVER BOB. It really makes a difference to have the room so empty; hope it gives those among our cats with the biggest barriers to being adopted* a chance to show their more winsome sides. It was also a really quiet day (only one visitor, who didn't come inside, and that at the v. end of the morning), prob. because of the rain. I arrived late (having waited for the big traffic jam over on I-5 to clear out), and there was still time for attention (petting, games, treats) for each of the four. At one point I sat on the bench to see if anyone wd come over and ask to be petted: Tattoo was the one who took me up on the offer, though she seems to like being petted but not held. 

Lemura, Tattoo, and Jane all enjoyed their catnip.

Tattoo became quite enthusiastic over her string game. 

The bug-on-a-string toy went down well with Lemura and Tattoo; Jane was interested but distrustful that it was all a trick and I'd try to pet her or something. Later on, when she came out and went up to cage-top land, she tore around with great zeal and zest after it.

Oliver Bob was v. quiet and v. shy. He froze anytime I petted him, and shrank back whenever I extended a hand for him to smell or offered him a toy. He did come out after a while, and hid under the cat-stand by the cabinet. Later in the morning he came out from under briefly, and crept along toward the front door -- which was interesting to watch, because he used Tattoo as cover, waiting till she was heading that direction and slinking along low down alongside her, using her as cover. Afterwards he went into her cage, where he stayed till I moved him over into his own at noon. So he's not afraid of Tattoo, and she's not worried or threatened by him, though a little puzzled by his behavior. He did enjoy some wet catfood (as did they all). Glad to hear others have had good results with petting him and hearing him purr, but no suck luck for me today. Hope I get there, though, since his being tailless makes him look a lot like Tiger, the cat I had growing up (all the way from when I was in second grade till I was in graduate school; a good long life), who was part Manx.**

Jane loves the cagetops, though she hates being made to get down from there at end-of-shift (I used The Cardboard Wall of Doom). She was a little less hostile this morning, though still deeply suspicious of What I Might Be Up To. Petted her v. briefly when first opened her cage, without blood loss. Think she's trying to change, but change is hard; for my part, going to try to get her out and about and play with her more and see if that helps.

Lemura was a mellow sweetie. She put herself atop the short cat-stand by the door and stayed there all morning, sometimes snoozing, sometimes playing games, sometimes enjoying being petted. She let me groom her some. Think next week I'll try her with walks again and see if maybe she'll take to it better now.

Tattoo is a great cat: she loves to be petted, then starts to groom my hand (sometimes taking long sleepy pauses with her tongue just sticking out, which is adorable), then begins to nibble on it. She lets me take my hand away just as she's starting to grab and the claws begin to prick just a little. Then a while later we play the same game again. She was quite upset at having to go back into her cage at noon (and not because of Oliver B, who was already back in his own digs by then). 

Good to be back, and to see the cats again.

--John R.

*the one who won't allow herself to be touched or petted (Jane), the one who's started to feel that grooming herself is optional (Lemura), the senior cat with diabetes issues (Tattoo), and the one with a heart murmur (Bob). Challenges all round.

**though she was a striped stumpee, not a solid-black rumpee.

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