How to Raise a Cat with Love

July 2021

Chocolate and blue point Siamese female cats sitting on a carpeted office shelf built for them.

Lily and Lucy, office supervisors.

For the love of a cat. You pour your heart out and never look back. I love cats. Never a commitment to take lightly.

 

To bring one into my home, it becomes their forever home. A hard decision. Do I devote myself to this little creature for the next 18 years?

 

So, I pick wisely and trust I haven’t made a mistake. A promise to the little four-legged one. We will work through whatever life throws at us. Will never abandon you, no matter what.

 

How do you know if you should get a cat?

Sometimes wondered if I made a serious mistake but will not falter from the committed relationship we embarked on together. I adjust to their peculiarities or needs, in hopes we can co-exist for many years.

 

Cats are family. They are living beings and deserve a good life. To lock them in a cage or give them away because they are difficult is wrong. You try to find a compromise that is suitable. Since you can’t talk it out with them, you do the changing to produce harmony to survive under the same roof.

 

Before deciding on a cat, consider the following questions.

Can you have one where you live? Can you afford vet bills? Do you have a budget for litter and food? Are you able to commit to the 15 to 18 years they may live?

 

After losing 2 cats as a teenager, I didn’t ask for a third one. I would soon leave home and didn’t want to saddle my parents with a pet. Never got another cat until I bought a house.

 

Chocolate and blue point Siamese cats lounging on a love seat relaxed and in loving home

Lily and Lucy, after breakfast nap.

Is my cat bad or just different?

You can’t let them destroy your furniture, carpets, and sanity. If chaos exists in the home and your cat’s behavior is unacceptable, time to evaluate why. Cats have a strange way of letting us know things don’t meet their approval.

 

Lily didn’t want to eat in the kitchen. She ran into the living room when presented with food. She eats in the living room now. Too much activity at mealtimes drove her to seek a better place.

 

Lucy peed on the bed a few times. Her protest of being behind a closed door for meals. We are working on a compromise. I placed a piece of tinfoil on the bed where she did the deed. She hates tinfoil.

 

Lily stands on her tiptoes to pee. Not every time. But an issue that needed a solution.

 

I had a high 3-sided box (was a storage bin) it worked for many cats prior to her. Lily jumps in the box from any side to pee. When she faced backside to the shorter opening, she ended up spraying the floor a foot away from the box. My other cats that stood to pee never shot outside the box.

 

The solution was to get a high 4-sided box. She grew taller, and it was no longer high enough. With the litter and standing on her tippy toes, it missed the mark in height.

 

Next step was to buy a couple of high sided litter boxes complete with platforms for easy access. A larger one might have been better, but they both navigate it with ease. This will suffice until they get old and unable to jump without discomfort. When that happens, we will find a different solution. (Litter box.)

 

I was proud of Lily when I brought the original 3-sided box back in during Lucy’s recovery from spaying. Lily never sprayed outside the box for the 9 days it was in the house. She used the other boxes when she wanted to standup and spray, nice kid. Didn’t want Lucy to do unnecessary jumping. She needed to wear an e-collar, making it difficult to judge her surroundings. Lucy’s spaying.

 

Blue and chocolate point Siamese female cats cuddling together under office desk in a loving home

Lucy and Lily under the desk, hugging each other.

Why is my cat always getting into trouble?

Cats are natural explorers. Not mischievous. Just them learning new things. A game for them. But not for the owner. Years ago, my daughter left clean clothes out on her bed and one day out walks our 5-month-old kitten with her bra dragging between his legs. It was hilarious. And rats; I was the only one to witness his crime. He was pretty proud of his treasure.

 

As for Lily: There was the inconvenience of removing the top 2 shelves of the bookcase to keep them safe. The stability of it concerned me for not only their safety but ours. We couldn’t screw it to the wall. The weight of the books left a gap where they could fall. Too high and dangerous, so we modified it. Book shelf caper.

 

Put carpeting on top, a wise decision. On one occasion, Lily could have fallen. She was hanging on by a paw to the carpet when I rescued her. The curious Siamese get into situations that can be hazardous. Think 2-year-old kids that love to climb. These cats haven’t figured out how to open cupboard doors or drawers, yet…!

 

On the table was a folded towel and placemat. I return to the kitchen a half hour later. Placemat on the floor, and someone had a blast with the towel. Lucy had twirled it around into a pile. Another OMG moment. Loved to have seen the action. Wild Lucy’s MO.

 

Blue point Siamese cat sprawled out on love seat relaxing in a loving home.

Lucy relaxing in the morning sun.

What surprises can they think of next?

Paper towels unrolled across the kitchen floor with a few bite marks. Bought a heavy paper towel holder. She knocked it over once when the roll was small. Shall see what happens in the future. Prank over, I hope. Can’t correct a cat on unacceptable behavior if not caught in the act.

 

2 boxes of Kleenex destroyed. 3 more in other rooms. Hope the one in the bathroom remains untouched. This is Lucy’s obsession. Grateful it’s not the toilet paper.

 

One morning found towels on the bathroom floor. The plastic-wrapped package of gauze from the dentist on the bathroom counter was lying on the kitchen floor. Wonder what went on that night. I’m sure it was hilarious to watch.

 

Missing a shoe. Located it 10 feet away. Lucy had dragged it by a lace. My response to her was, “What? That is a dog thing!”

 

Small plastic measuring spoon on the counter… knocked on the floor.

 

What next, the marbles in the glasses?

Yep… sure enough, the next evening out bounced one across the counter, with the 2 of them in hot-pursuit. Lucy, I presume, was the culprit. Scooping the marble out of the glass with her paw. Visions of “Home Alone” marbles scattered over the floor, and we sprawled out from falling on them. Put the marbles in the cupboard until an alternative approach for counting glasses of water consumed daily.

 

A day later. Lid for cat food container on the floor this morning.

 

I am prepared for the laughter and frustrations these 2 provide. Someday we all will be older, and I will relish in the fond memories.

 

Share your thoughts.

Have you had any behavioral problems with your cats that were difficult to solve?

Are you dealing with any cat problems now?

 

 

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