I have to fess up that I just don’t understand these cats. It’s weird that I don’t. I mean, I’ve had cats in my house pretty much constantly for the last 33 years. During that time I should’ve learned something about the little dears, right?
That would be no.
Buddy, the older of the pair, wants nothing more than to sit in my lap all day. That becomes pretty difficult when I’m trying to do research, write, or even meet with clients. You may or may not remember, but I work out of my home.
Some people understand that I have a cat. Others don’t. That’s not even getting into the whole cats vs. dogs thing. What people don’t understand is that the cats pretty much run the show.
But Buddy loves to sit in my lap. And he expects me to be on the couch in the evening. He hears the Jeopardy! theme start and, if I’m not on the couch, he gets pretty agitated.
He doesn’t see the need to reciprocate though. Like last night, he didn’t come in till sometime after Jeopardy! ended.
Yes, he was outside. And, yes, I know you shouldn’t let cats run around outside, unless you have a fenced in area or run for them to play in. But Buddy was feral for at least 3 years before he adopted me so it’s kind of hard to lock him in.
Regardless, what I don’t get is why (1) he needs to lay in my lap all day and (2) it’s okay for him to demand my presence but not for me to expect his.
Having a lap cat has taken quite a bit of getting used to. The first cat, Cecil, he of 33 years ago (and lived 20+ years after that), picked his spots. He let me pet him and, once in a great while, would climb into my lap. That became more frequent as he got older, but even then it didn’t happen much. It was an event when he did. Cat #2, Annie, whose tenure overlapped that of Cecil’s (she arrived about 15 years ago), almost never sat in my lap. It was like she didn’t know how. I can recall literally 3 times she sat in my lap. She stuck around maybe 5 minutes then was off. But she wanted to be nearby and when I wasn’t around she pined.
Vacations were pretty traumatic for both of us.
Buddy, though, wants to sit on my lap. It’s quite the change.
Spook, on the other hand, is another matter entirely. He comes around when the weather is bad. Cold, windy, storms and he’s here – in the house, never on my lap or anything. Any other time, and he’s not around.
Well, not around till he gets hungry. I’ll be writing and then hear *chomp CRUNCH chomp*, look up and there he is. If the weather is bad, he sticks around, hopping through the living room onto his spot on the old couch and that’s that. Good weather (which was pretty much all February) and he hopped on out and away he went.
But what I just don’t get is that he doesn’t respond to much of anything. We’re just here, giant, noisy feed-providers. He doesn’t respond to our talking to him, he doesn’t want any sort of touching (he’ll flinch if you touch him, and avoids all contact), and generally ignores us.
Even Cecil at his misanthropic best would twitch at his name. Spook doesn’t.
That’s not just because he isn’t really “mine” so doesn’t know his name. I mean he literally doesn’t even move, his ears don’t flick, nor does he look up at the sound of my voice – and I know he can hear because of his reaction to the neighbor dogs’ barking, whether at him or just pitching a fuss.
His behavior is fairly troublesome. I’m glad he comes around; I can’t stand the idea that someone abandoned him, so gladly feed him and let him sleep here. But after all this time, I’d think he’d soften a little, at least look up when we talk and not seem as indifferent to us as he has been.
Oh, twice he actually sought out attention and affection. But literally every other time he pops up, no reaction to anything other than our movements, like he was afraid we were going to *horrors* touch him. (In all likelihood, he’s probably afraid that we’re going to do something to him because people are pretty nasty to cats generally, strays in particular).
He does seem quite taken with the linen closet, however. I’ve had to wash towels more than a couple of times because he’s opened the door and made himself at home on the towels and sheets.
All in all, though, his behavior is troublesome also because he’s shown up lately limping. I can’t get him to a vet to get checked out because if I tried I’d never see him again once we got back. And that would be worse than him not reacting at all to my attempts at making him feel welcome.
So that’s the latest on “my” boys. One affectionate, the other indifferent.