You are currently browsing the monthly archive for February 2010.

The Oak Court Cats eat well.  That is as far as quantity goes.  Or, maybe I should say they eat a lot.  Yep, lets leave it that way; the Oak Court Cats eat alot!.  I went to the pet store today to stock up 2 weeks worth of goodies.  No, the cats didn’t go along; they know when they are taken to the car they’ll be going to the vet.

Two weeks worth of food and kitty litter will just about fill the trunk:

  • 14 of the 3.5 ounce cans (Please include a few cans of the white fish with sauce)
  • A 16 pound bag of crunchie munchies
  • 25 pound box of kitty litter (they prefer the clumping litter)
  • 2 of the expensive bags of treats. (I believe they can identify the generic treats by the color of the bag)

I’d like to take them to the store at least once.  Would be fun to see them react to the presence of dogs.  Blutto, the Maine Coon, has met a few dogs on the court and doesn’t seem to be afraid of them.  He is bigger than most of them anyway.  Missey and Precious don’t like dogs and will take shelter when one of the neighborhood dogs is out and about.

Sleeping, probably dreaming about the next kill.

While they like the watch me unload the car, carry the food into the house and put it away, they haven’t been much help getting the job done.  The tabby will sit up on the freezer, right below the shelf and watch each and every can being put up.  Occasionally he’ll reach out with his paw and stop me so that he can perform a ‘cat scan’.

They do their best to let us know when the crunchie munchie feeder is running low.  One of the herd , Mr Worf, would sit in the kitchen, staring at the empty bowl until it was refilled.  He’d stay on watch for hours until one of us filled it up again.  The tabby raises the alarm, usually at 3:00 in the morning, by sitting in the hallway and howling

Precious, deals with dinner in her own way.  Just like the African lioness, Precious  hunts for the pride.  Every couple of days we’ll see the remains of something she caught and killed in the kitchen, near the cat’s food bowls.  Occasionally, however, we are alerted to her hunting by mysterious bumps in the carpetg.  She finds it necessary to store a late night snack under the rug.

Tonight’s feeding was uneventful.  The herd showed up around sunset, waited for a new can to be put into the bowls.  Once they had their fill they dispersed again, some to the living room and a post meal nap while others went out to do what ever cats did when out on the court.

Advertisements

Ok, the saying is to let sleeping dogs lie but, on the court, it’s sleeping cats.

As I get older I’ve learned to enjoy the nap; those minutes where you can comfortably doze off in the middle of the day.  You wake up refreshed, recharged and have the energy to tackle new challenges.  The cats that reside here are experts on the nap.

Yes, that's a 20 pound cat sleeping on the ledge.

Where does a 20 pound Maine Coon sleep? Anywhere he pleases.   The big guy prefers to sleep in a place where he can keep an eye out for the other cats.  the better places are off limits to him.  The other cats have seniority and get the best places; he gets to choose from what’s left.  Yes, he’s sleeping in the ledge above the window, a favorite place.

The Queen sleeps where she wishes, when she wishes and for however long she wishes.  There are times she will occupy a comfortable spot for 10 or more hours.  As she is the alpha, the other cats will stay clear or, on special occasions, join her at nap time.  Of course, if she decides to nap on the bed, I’ll be sleeping on the sofa that night.

They wanted to sleep in the bed, I got the sofa.

The Oak Court Cats don’t restrict sleeping to the house.  Nope.  I’ve come up on them sleeping in flower beds, on the neighbor’s lawn chairs and other’s porches.  Nothing is off limits to a cat requiring a nap.

Well, all this talk about napping has convinced me that I need a nap.

Later

The Court was wet and cold most of the day; rain fall since early  morning had kept the cats in doors most of the day.  Sometime after 3:00, the sky lightened up, the misting stopped and the herd (or is it a pride) of cats headed outside.  Well, most of them.

The Maine Coon had been out in the back most of the morning; he’s got such a thick coat he doesn’t mind the dampness.  While the Queen made no effort to leave the warm confines of a blanket on the sofa, the others dashed out into the yard.  The mottled brown Tonkinese sat under the bar-b-que grill while the tabby sat on the back step and surveyed the back yard.

When the rain stopped completely and the sidewalks  dried off a bit, the squirrels started to come down from the pines for peanuts.  We’ve gotten into the habit of tossing a hand full of unsalted nuts out for the blue jays and squirrels.  They have learned to listen for the rattle of the peanut can and come running; as if it were  a dinner bell and we were calling a bunch of little kids in for a meal.

The big cat, the Maine Coon, hangs out in the yard when the critters come for dinner.  Now, in case you’re thinking that it’s dangerous for the squirrels to be in the yard with the cat, don’t worry about it.  The squirrels are much faster than the big guy.  By the time he gets his 20 or so pounds moving, they’re long gone.

Sitting in the doorway I watch the poor guy as he goes into a crouch and tries to work his way closer to the prey.  He’s not as graceful as other cats, due to his size.  He also  makes enough noise and gives his intended victims ample warning.  After a year of this “dance” some of the squirrels now run at him and he’ll turn and lumber away.  Eventually the big guy tires of the game and trots back into the house for a kitty crunchie snack.

The other cats don’t chase the squirrels; the herd learned a long time ago they put up a pretty good fight and there is always a bowl of food in the kitchen. I don’t think the big guy has figured it out yet.  Or maybe he has; chasing squirrels  is just his way of  having some fun out there.

I live in an old house on Oak Court.  My wife,  our son and his daughter  and I live in a nice house built back in the early 1930s.  The block is quiet; very little traffic, other than the squirrels, birds and cats.  The cats….

As anyone who has provided a home to felines knows, you don’t own cats, you provide them with a place to sleep and a steady supply of food.  You never really ‘own’ them,  in the way you ‘own’ dogs, turtles and parrots.  If they are pleased, they will allow you to continue showering them with affection, food and the occasional touch of catnip.

Four cats reside in this house on the court.  I’ll introduce them in future posts; for now you can assume they are pleased with the quality of the food and the quantity of kitty litter and have not expressed the desire to move elsewhere.

It’s mid-afternoon as I write this; they’re scattered around the house and yard.  The queen is sleeping on the sofa while the young female is napping on top of the boxes of Christmas decorations above the garage.  The older male is sleeping on top shelf of the cat tower, in the living room.  And the young male, a Maine Coon, is happily stretched out in the flower box behind the garage.  The house is at peace.

While they’re quiet I can go about cleaning the bowls, shoveling the litter and putting away the various cat toys that are scattered about the house.  It’s quiet and that may not be a good thing – I don’t know what they are up to.