Thursday, August 29, 2013

Keeping Cats Happy

Our cats own us. No surprises there. And we will do anything to make them comfortable and happy.

Oxford is a great place for them, and they took an instant liking to it. It took them much longer to get comfortable in DC, as we were living below some friends and every little bump and shriek (from their 2-year old) sent the cats skittering under the couch.

Here we have two floors with no one above or below us. As Ted likes to say, "We finally own our air space!" The cats are in love with the stairs; Minnie runs down so fast she looks like she's tumbling, and Milo likes to attack the steps when he gets into one of his "mad-eyed frenzies."

They also get to go outside here, which is fairly new. We live in a quiet neighborhood. Not much car traffic, and not so wild that I worry about coyotes or foxes being out in the daytime. So the cats get supervised outside time.

Milo is, of course, the more adventurous one. He's the one we end up losing track of every time, only to find him in a neighbor's open garage, or on someone's back porch, or under the bush in our front yard. He also likes to eat grass. Which he promptly barfs up as soon as he comes inside.

Minnie has always been the more skittish one, so she stays close to home, though she loses all awareness of herself and her surroundings if a butterfly should happen to flutter by. She's a hunter at her core.

Now that they've had a taste of the big bad world, the cats are less content staying inside (say, when it's 93 degrees with 100% humidity and mommy and daddy don't want to sit on the back porch to supervise). So we purchased them a scratching post upgrade. Here is what they had back in Boulder:


And here is what they had assembled for them yesterday, placed thoughtfully in front of an optimal viewing window:

(You should hear a choir of angels singing a harmonious chord)

Milo loves the little dangly ball:

Or shall I say, "loved". He made short work of that:

Minnie was the first to the top. My money was on her from the start:

They were immediately all over it and were so happy to finally have some scratching surfaces back. Overall, they're both very good about not scratching furniture, but they have been trying to use the carpet to sharpen their claws since we got here. Hopefully this will solve that problem.

Of course, when I woke up this morning, where do you think the cats were? Happily curled up on their cat tree platforms, gazing out the window?


Sigh.  $90.00 cat tree: 0,  Narrow window sill: 1

P.S. Please disregard all the junk on the floor in these photos. We're still unpacking and trying to figure out where stuff goes in our new house.

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