Friday, March 13, 2009

Oh no she didn't

My first big fear about the cats is that they would be shedding machines that would cause me daily headaches.

My second big fear about the cats was that they would be shedding machines that would cause me daily vacuuming.

Pictures from South America. I shot this from the train in Peru. This was in 1995, my post Peace Corps cross-continental land return to the US.

My third big fear about the cats is that they would be scratching machines that would damage our furniture.

I haven't seen a lot of scratching and really, we don't have a lot stuff to be scratched, but even so, we've kept the door to the living room closed. We keep it closed anyhow because we don't want to heat it right now or pretty much ever. But I had gone in there for something last week and Laverne had followed me. I thought it would be OK since I hadn't seen her doing much scratching. I turned to see her climb to one of the highest points in the room, the newly reupholstered chair, which didn't surprise me, as she is a cat and that is a very gato thing to do. I retrieved her and thought no more of it.

Snake-oil salesman in La Paz. Seriously. He had a dead snake with rendered snake oil and rubbed it on a volunteer's (not Peace Corps volunteer, just some random guy in the crowd) back. Good for kidney, heart, blood problems, whatever ails you.

Last night, SH went out to sing. He stopped at the pet store for a few things. When I went into the dining room this morning, I saw one of them: a cat scratching post.

A fancy one. With a $64.99 price tag.

Oh heck to the no.

Me: Um darling? What's the story on this cat thing?

SH: It was on sale and the other ones were so crummy. If it saves our furniture, it will be worth it. And think of how much fun the cats will have on it!

Bus station in Ecuador

He has a point. On saving the furniture, I mean. I am not in the business of entertaining my pets. They are just cats. Cute cats, but. Cats.

We open the door to the dining room so it will warm in time for supper tonight. Laverne saunters in. SH puts her by the cat post. Look, Laverne! he says.

She walks right past him, slips under the dining room table, runs to the reupholstered chair, climbs on top of it and starts scratching. I run over and realize that there are already pulled-out places.

Holy moley. That girl works fast.

Elections in Guatemala, I think.

It might be back to the basement for a while until we figure out how to handle this. For now, the door will remain closed. Well, it's open now, but Laverne is in the basement. Shirley is upstairs. She's not a scratcher. Her specialty appears to be sitting on my computer and disabling the radio wireless so I can't get to the interwebs, thus causing The Engineer to spend two hours of valuable work time reconfiguring my system so I can connect to the world again. My new trick is to invert a 9x13 pan over the keyboard when I leave, which I will be doing shortly to repair (if I can) the chair.

I think Guatemala.


AKJ said...

It will be cheaper to declaw the cats and return the scratching post

class-factotum said...

In theory, yeah. But I am morally opposed to declawing. Not that I wouldn't have happily adopted a declawed cat. But I wouldn't declaw one that I have.

MrScribbler said...

No declawing, please. Not good for cats.

I bought mine a lovely scratching post, took him over to it, made scratching motions, put his paws on it to show him how to use it, the whole thing.

Ten years later, I could have taken it back to the pet store and gotten a refund. It was unmarked.

Not so for a few pieces of furniture. But I loved the cat more than my furniture....

John0 Juanderlust said...

Kids and pets; 99% of people who have them don't get how to train them.
I think people like being terrorized by the things.
If you don't want the cat to like the furniture, for awhile put ground red or cayenne pepper there and let em have it with a squirt gun if no is not getting the point across. Things you want them to like rub a little catnip on them. And reward the behavior with a live mouse or other treat. All the above works on cats as well, not just children.

class-factotum said...

John, we have just started the squirting technique. Haven't tried the red pepper, will give it a go.

Alas, these seem to be the only cats in the world uninterested in catnip, bacon, tuna, or pork. Are they vegan, drug-free cats? I don't really mind that we don't have to share our meat -- more for us -- but will the allure of catnip gain us nothing?