Welcome to Cat Saturday where we usually have fun news and photos of our fur gang, but today we have news of killer kitties, specifically Odin who finally did what he was supposed to do on his Daily Show shoot. Yes, it was a spoof about cats killing birds with two cat behavior consultants, Jackson Galaxy and me, in on the joke.
And no, we don’t condone it but cats are natural born killers: a fly, a moth, a mouse, a bird or even cute bunny rabbits. It’s not pretty but it’s what’s cats want to do more than anything, even the sweetest kitty you know, perhaps sitting in your lap right now. Cats are hunters. Most cats have to satisfy their hunting instinct with toys and games but if they had to choose, they’d choose live prey.
During film the shoot, Odin tried to be a good actor and go after a bird, but he failed. He hasn’t stopped trying and yesterday he succeeded. The only good thing: It was a quick kill without torture play and no blood. I’ve never seen Odin happier or more proud. One of his favorite toys is a small bird which is retrieves on command and plays fetch with, but there’s no substitute for the real deal. He paraded all over the house, up and down stairs with his prize dangling from his mouth. Finally, he placed it down in the dining room (where else?) To my horror, I found it bore striking resemblance to his bird toy. He received lavish praise for his hunting skills but no bird for dinner.
On a lighter note: Odin just may be the happiest cat in the world.
The best news this week is the huge breakthrough with foster gal Ling Ling. She is transforming from a hissy Dragon Lady to playful new girl friend for Odin. I’ve found blending creativity with intuition works best with behavioral issues. What works for one cat doesn’t necessarily work for another. Since Ling Ling loves ribbons, I devised a toy from a six-foot length of ribbon and tied two small stuffed toys at either end. With the door to her quarters open, I threw the toy towards her like a fishing line and slowly wiggled it until she pounced. Odin is fascinated with her but she’d hiss if he moved within three feet of her. The toy distracted her and she felt safe watching Odin play with the end at a comfortable distance. Before long they followed the toy downstairs and into the living room where Ling Ling finally felt comfortable exploring every nook and cranny.
Last night, my step-kids came over and she was watching TV playing and cuddling with the whole gang as if she’s been here forever. She still has no use for Merlin or Gris Gris and is embodying her inner princess. Merlin is happy I’m no longer spending part of the night with Ling Ling. Like any parent, it’s important to spend one-on-one time with your babies. Merlin needed more quality time with me to reassure him all was well. We hung out in the garden just the two of us and he told me he doesn’t want Ling Ling to sleep in the same room. For now, she continues to sleep locked up in her own wing at night, because after all, Merlin remains king. The juggling of feline family dynamics shifts every day. As a cat parent, I recommend the stop, look, listen rule. Stop what you’re doing regularly and give your cats your full attention. Look, at your cat’s closely for any changes, physically or behaviorally. Listen to them with both your ears and your intuition. Our cats are constantly communicating with us if we listen.
After a long illness, feral Domino is reveling in his daily playtime with his pals and has recuperated nicely from a long summer of meds. He poked his head indoors for the first time this year and we can only hope he decides to come indoors this winter.
Merlin loves his walks with seeing-eye cat and bodyguard Gris Gris who trails behind faithfully protecting him from real and imaginary enemies.
It’s been a hot summer for many of our readers. We send cool thoughts your way via Odin who loves digging in the snow. He’s probably the only one at our house looking forward to snow! Have a happy weekend!