February 10th 2013 5:03 am
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Sometimes cats, like children, will for no discernible reason, will take a notion to be exceedingly bratty. At times like these even the normally best behaved individual can behave like a feline version of Tazz the Tasmanian devil cartoon character. When the individual already bears some resemblance to Tazz in behavior to start with, that individual becomes REALLY bratty when the brattiness mood strikes. The brattiness escalates until sooner or later, the "Now You've Gone & Done It" threshold is finally reached.
Recently Uno has had a bad case of the bratty Tazz behavior bug. She still is knocking the cordless phone off its base constantly. While I'm trying to use my laptop, she yanks the trackball cord out of the USB port. She yanks the cords of the desktop trackballs and sends the trackballs crashing down onto the floor. She yanked a keyboard cord and pulled a keyboard off the desk onto the floor. When I was trying to eat a bagel with cream cheese, Uno tried to grab a bite. I held the bagel up out of her reach only to have one of her partners in crime, a little tortie named Skittles, reach out from where she was sitting on top of the headboard and swipe a paw through the cream cheese. I quickly moved the bagel out of Skittles reach & while Skittles licked the cream cheese off her paw, Righty made her move to try to get a bit of my bagel. While Righty and Skittles were keeping me busy, Uno sneaked up from the opposite side and was busy licking cream cheese of the second half of my bagel that was sitting on my plate as fast as she could.
The Now You've Gone & Done It point was almost reached. I picked up my canned air. Suddenly there were no cats in my immediate vicinity and I was able to eat my bagel in peace.
Then I saw the little red light that indicates my cell phone is charging, suddenly go out. I looked down. Uno was standing there looking at me innocently. The cord to my cellphone charger had been neatly severed in two. Although I wonder if there was some sort of defect in the cord that allowed it to be broken in two so quickly and easily, there was no doubt as to who obligingly provided the sharp little teeth to help that cord break. Today I'll have to go buy another cellphone charger.
The Now You've Gone & Done It point has been reached.
After I buy a replacement cellphone charger, I'm going to fish the bottle of Bitter Apple out of my animal supplies cabinet and the trackball cords and the cellphone charger cord will get a nice coating of bitter apple. The cordless phone on its base is going to be covered with a plastic box and a rock too heavy for a cat to move will be put on top of the box. Certain feline family members are going to find me armed with a can of canned air nearby when I eat. After I do these things for a few days, most likely Uno (and her partners in food theft crimes) will have given up on these particular antics and gotten over their bratty Tazz behavior bugs.
When their pets misbehave, too many people react by getting rid of the pet. I believe your feline/canine/other animal family members should be for keeps & that when one of your non-human family members reaches the "Now You've Gone & Done It' point, that you should take positive measures to work through problem situations with our non-human family members and deal with the problem behavior(s), in this case coating cords with Bitter Apple (and if that doesn't work I'll try Bitter Orange or Tabasco sauce), temporarily covering the cordless phone on its base with a protective box for a few days so it's no longer fun to play with, and making sure I have a can of canned air within reach and within sight of would-be food thieves when I eat. A number of times when I've had a feline family member urinate and/or defecate in inappropriate places and there were no clear reasons for it, I've caged that cat and after that cat has consistently used its litter pan for a month while caged, I've let that cat out again and the cat has continued to be clean again in the house.
I have a 15 year old cat who I have to keep confined to an extra large dog crate. Her kidneys and digestive system function poorly, she urinates and defecates excessively, is unable to be clean in the house although she's clean in a crate because her litterpan is nearby, and has to have a special canned diet. She is happy and cheerful, plays with her toys and clearly is still enjoying life. If I leave her crate door open, she might come out for a moment, then she'll go right back in. She is also very well aware that when she's eating, the other cats cannot get at her food. Before she got to the point where she wasn't able to make it to the litter pan in time in the house, I used to crate her to feed her so the other cats wouldn't get her food and she would run to the crate, get in it, and meow when she wanted fed.
Now You've Gone & Done It!
And you're lucky I love you enough to use positive strategies to handle and work together with you through behavior problems and situations until we, you my non-human family member(s) and I, reach solutions that are positive for us together.. But my home really is a forever home for my non-human family members , my non-human family members really are for KEEPs and together I will see my non-human family members through good times and bad.
But that's what a good responsible owner/pet parent SHOULD do.
Leave A Comment | 2 people already have
Absolutely! We believe in forever homes, too. Every 'problem' is an opportunity to find a solution that works for all concerned.
well..I have to admit..first I laughed and then I went..OH NO!!..and then I went..YES!!..and thank you!!
You are a fantastic furpawrent!!..Uno is adorable but yes I can see her trying the limits and I am so thankful she has you!!..other people may have gotten rid of her..but thankfully she was guided to the right furever home..