Things I wish I could explain to my cat.

My cat is a former lab (as in laboratory) research subject. As such, he has no table manners whatsoever, having not grown up indoctrinated in a household environment.
He’s a great cat, very personable, loves people, doesn’t claw the furniture or spray or do any extremely objectionable things. However, there are a few things I wish I could explain to him.
[li]I would be more than happy to share (cat-healthy) bits of my dinner with you, if you would just sit there quietly and look hopeful. Instead, you howl at the top of your little cat lungs, paw at our legs, try and climb into our laps, and generally make yourself an unbearable nuisance, thereby earning you a squirt to the face with a watergun, instead of tasty morsels of chicken. Never have we reinforced this behavior, in fact completely the opposite.[/li]
[li]Eating your piss is gross. Where you picked up this behavior, I’m not sure, but it’s gross. We use an all-natural cat litter made of ground whole corn, which clumps beautifully, is flushable, doesn’t smell, isn’t dusty, and is non-harmful, unlike clay litters. However, Poe has developed a new hobby of peeing into the litter, then returning periodically for a snack. Sometimes, he just munches on the litter itself. It won’t hurt him, it’s just gross. We’ve consulted veterinarians, animal behavior experts, and the litter company itself. General consensus: it won’t hurt him, it’s just gross. We think he has some corn compulsion due to a diet change from Science Diet (high in ground whole yellow corn) to Felidae (not). We can’t really figure out how to stop it, so we’ve decided to live with the shame of having a piss-eating cat, choosing to deal with it by cleaning the litter box out several times a day, thus (hopefully) reducing the piss-eating, and limiting him to munching on the litter. It’s easy to do that 'cause the litter box is in the bathroom, and the litter is flushable. Unlike all-y’all, my cat’s breath does not smell like cat food.[/li]
[li]Hi, Opal! Yes, I’m aware many people are irritated at this. However, I just realized I don’t have a third thing to complain about, and in order to fulfill the requirements of having a list, I had to throw it in there. Hearty apologies.[/li][/list=1]

Really, he’s a good cat. There’s just those two little things I wish I could explain to him, since there don’t seem to be any training methods that work. If I could just tell him, “hey, shut up and I’ll share” we’d be fine. Instead I can’t give him treats, he acts obnoxious, and we’re both unhappy.
Plus, he eats his piss.

Okay, I’m done bitching now. Maybe this is more appropriate for the Pit, but I was sort of hoping someone would have suggestions on how to deal with these things.


Good thread idea.

  1. You don’t have to bang the mirror to wake me up. Just jump on the bed and meow. You’re going to break it one day.

  2. If you go out now, that’s it. I’m going to bed and won’t be able to let you back in until the morning.

  3. Those aren’t bugs or rats or anything worth chasing, it’s just random light relections. Chill out.

  4. Speaking of, I really appreciate your hunting prowess but you can keep the bunny rabbit all to yourself. No need to bring it on the porch.

  5. Wait until you go outside to scratch something, don’t used the door jams in the house.

  6. That really does hurt when you bite/scratch me. I know you think you’re playing but . . . just stop.

  7. The only time I am going to hold you down is when you get a tick on you. Just sit still, it’ll only take a second and it won’t hurt.

  8. No, you don’t want what I’m eating. You’ll just smell it and ignore it on the floor.

  9. Please stay out of the road.

The thing I wish I could explain to my cat for HIS sake – the concept of weather reports. This is less of a problem now that he has a cat door – but it used to be that he’d head out for his morning constitutional then refuse to come back inside for the day – his perogative, but I really wished I could explain to him that yeah, it’s okay out now, but it’s going to be snowing later…

My kitty is just seven weeks old. Ditto on point one. She thinks that anything that goes into our mouths must be great food for her too. (We gave her a little peice of a pear thinking she would never eat it, and she loved it). We don’t have the piss eating problem though.

Background: My kitty was rescued off the street when her mommy was run over. She was 3 weeks old and bottle feed at first. She thinks I am her mommy, and that all humans are here to serve her.

Things I wish I could explain to Luna:
I am not your chew toy. Let me repeat, I am not your chew toy.
I also, am not your scratching post. Please stop climbing up my legs as it hurts.
My eyelashes are not chew toys in the middle of the night. (It hurts like hell when she bites my eye in the middle of the night. What a way to wake up!)
My rubber plant is not your personal jungle.
Books are meant for reading, they are not beds for your nap whenever mommy needs to study.

All in all though, I love this little girl and she is just about the cutest kitty I’ve ever seen. She’s lovable and sweet, even if a bit hyper active.

Sorry I don’t have any adivse on how to get your kitty to stop eating it’s own piss.

Oh, I forgot:

  1. I’m happy to have you curl up in bed, snuggled against my chest, purring and generally being sweet and cat-like. However, waiting until I’m sound asleep at four AM, then inching upwards just enough to casually brush your whiskers across my face several times while you contemplate the wallpaper is likely to get you hurled across the room, before I wake up enough to realize that it’s you and not one of the marching hordes of Very Large Spiders which also occupy our house.

That is all.

All cats think that humans are here to serve them.:slight_smile:

  1. Stop Scratching That!
  2. Hey! Stop Scratching That!
  3. I mean it this time! Stop That!!

Dear Scout:

I do like you, really. And I’m happy to pet you. The problem is, I start petting you, you walk halfway across the room and then flop down looking at me expectantly, plainly thinking that my arms reach that far. They don’t. Don’t look at me like I’m the meanest person in the world because you walked away from my hand.

And I’m not starving you to death. My walking into the kitchen does not mean that you must be fed - especially when you have food available not 10 feet away. That hurt look you give me when I walk back out without giving you anything doesn’ t make me feel guilty at all.
Dear Jake:

I know that the bed in the middle of the night is your favorite place now. Absolutely, and you’re warm and cuddly on top of the blankets. But, when you attack my feet under the blankets in the middle of the night, it will probably end with me yelling and you running from the room (you are a bit of a coward, ya know). Then it will take you two nights to decide that you can come back on the bed again, and about another week to attack the feet in the dark. The cycle will continue.

  1. The dog is not your toy. I dont care that you are bigger than him, and that he is teasing you. Ignore it. You are above him, prove it.

  2. You get wet nummies once a day. The dry nummies are for the rest of the day. Stop pretending that you are starving to get another can. You arent, and I wont.

  3. 4 am is not a good time for me. Please, please just curl up next to me, instead of on my chest. You feel like a small boulder at that time in the morning and I dream of being crushed by a purring sandstone rock.

Yes I realize this, but this kitty literally thinks all humans, not just me, are here to serve her. Every person who walks into our house better love on her before they do anything else. She will literally go in circles around the room, back and forth to each person, making sure she is the center of attention. She is very people friendly and spoiled rotten at that.

  1. It really isn’t a good idea to sit on a chair that is the same color you are.

  2. The top of my monitor isn’t the best place to expel the hairball.

  3. The birds and ground squirrels on the deck know about the sliding glass door. They are laughing at you.

You don’t need to announce you’ve been to the bathroom, by scratching your litter box. I can smell it.

Food you don’t like, doesn’t go away by banging on your food bowl.

The postman hasn’t got the time to play hide and seek with you.

You’re a cat No matter how hard you try to dig holes in the yard and bring me back the sticks I threw.

Birds really don’t buy a perfectly still animal who’s tail is twitching madly.

[li]Please don’t paw at the blinds. My alarm clock will do the job just fine (and at a more consistent time) thank you.[/li][li]Please understand that for two days out of the week I don’t need to get up at 5:15 AM. While I don’t expect you remember what they days are called, just remember, for every five days I get up and leave for the day, the next two are my days off. Please let me sleep on these days.[/li][li]Just because I am going to the refrigerator doesn’t necessarily mean I’m giving you a treat.[/li][li]Banister != scratching post, got it?[/li][/ul]

My cat Beast does this, except I don’t yell – I kick. And it can take several nights for him to come back. We have a phrase for this: “Cats In Space”.

Dearest Sputnik,

I am not pregnant. There is no chance of you being replaced by some other tiny creatures. Therefore there is no need for you to attempt to induce miscarriage by jumping full force (all 17 pounds of you) onto my stomach.

Sylvester … yes, I am pleased that even at the advanced age of 15 you are capable of leaping onto the tv. However, the tail hangng over and swishing across the front of the tv during all important scenes in a movie is a no no. You can sleep with your tail tucked under during the news and sports, why not during drama?

Also, dear boy, I do not leap at your bowls to see what you are having for dinner. Okay, I have the advantage, I feed you, therefore I know, but you will get bites of my dinner - more if you leave me alone.

Erica … yes, you hate me. I know this. It hurts me, but I have grown to deal with it. I know it goes back to the time you stupidly attacked a moving car, crushed your pelvis and had to be caged for 2 months. I accept it was my mistake for taking you out, handing you to the bf, cleaning the cage I built by hand, and then putting you back in myself. In your fuzzy lil brain, men = good, Beth = bad. Well, hon, it is you and me now, isn’t 5 years about time to forgive and forget? If not, can we talk about the vet bills, sheesh!

Sam … I hope you found a better home, where you didn’t have to deal with such snobby cats. I loved you dearly, and will think of you on 5 Nov, anniversary of our first meeting. I miss you.

Columbine … 16 years was a good age for a London indoor/outdoor cat. I’m sorry you had to be put to sleep, and sorry the woman upstairs couldn’t find her damn keys, so you could have gotten to the vet sooner/spent your last night at home. But no, she couldn’t and you spent your last night on her balcony. She and I still won’t speak. Vesty and I still miss you very much.

You don’t need to be in the other room that urgently, it’ll still be there if you walk.

You don’t need to protect me from the magical evil shower. Yes I know it has all that scary water, but sitting right outside the shower yowling is not going to stop it.

And stay off the counter, you know better.

Etherman, that’s one of the nice things about his not having grown up in a house environment–he doesn’t yet know that counters and tables are sources of food and excitement. In fact, he won’t jump up on anything, unless we’re sitting there. For example, he won’t jump onto the couch or computer chair and sit or sleep there by himself, but if I or Mr. Armadillo are sitting there, the magic, magnetic cat-attracting force guarantees his presence in our laps within about thirty seconds.
Nice about the counter, though. From living with my roommate’s cat, I was expecting a constant battle over this. He has yet to even try jumping up. I don’t think he has any concept of surfaces higher than my lap.

Dear Neko:

There is no litter on top of the toilet seat. Pawing at it will not cover your shit.

It really isn’t necessary for you to use the litter box immediately after I change the bin and add more litter. It’s going to clean itself within minutes of your using it, and there just isn’t enough kitty byproduct in you to permanently mark it as your territory.

Dear Koshka:

Please stop shedding so much. Also, please stop tossing up hairballs. I brush you as often as I can, but I can’t brush as much as you can shed.

The bowl is not empty. There is still food in it. You won’t get any new food until the old stuff is gone. You won’t get anything different than you’ve been getting, either.

That’s MY pillow. Stay off of it, or I shall silly-string you again.


If you insist on walking directly under my feet, I will step on you. So enough with the dirty looks when it happens.

It’s quite cute when you play the shadow game, but not really necessary. You do not need to be in the same room with me at all times. I realize you like to sit and stare at me while I go to the bathroom, but it’s not going to kill you if I shut the door for once. A lady likes her privacy every now and then.

You’re not sleeping in my room with me. Get over it. You lost your priviledges when you figured out how to turn on my alarm clock at 4:30 am. Forget it. Sitting outside my door crying isn’t gonna make me let you in. I’m a rock, dammit.

You have clean, fresh water. Why must you insist on drinking dirty water in the kitchen sink? It’s just gross. Cut it out.

Just because I’m not looking directly at you, doesn’t mean I can’t hear you clawing the couch. Stopping and staring at me when I catch you, then starting again the minute I turn around isn’t fooling me.

Mommy loves you!

Whew! That felt good!

[sub]And can I just say that “Beast” is the single coolest name I’ve ever heard for a cat??[/sub]