Do Your Cats Ever Cross Your Boundaries?


Don’t you love cats? If you’re reading this, you probably do love cats a great deal. We arrange our lives around our cats, even though they are constantly invading our boundaries. If they are not invading boundaries, they’re certainly making their presence known. I know there’s so much evidence of cats around my house that I’m half-surprised I haven’t turned into a cat myself.

Here’s how my cats invade my boundaries or at least make their presence very known.

1. They hog the best spots

For weeks, I’ve been sitting on the edge of my lovely, ergonomically correct desk chair. Why? Because Jamie Bluebell has decided that this chair is her new home. She takes up quite a bit of it. When Kieran decides to join her, I might as well be falling off the chair. I really doubt I’m getting any ergonomic benefits by sitting in this chair the wrong way, but hey! It’s for the cats! I will move Kieran if I have to (he’s more willing than is Bluebell) but I hate to do it.

A Internet quiz was going around lately that assessed how much of a cat lover you are. I never took the quiz but one of the deciding questions was whether you’d move a cat off a chair. I have a hard time doing this, even though I seem to have no problem keeping them out of the bedroom. Go figure.

2. They’ve compelled me to put cat memorabilia all over the place

When people feel the need to give me a gift, they naturally think first of cat stuff. So I have plenty of cat memorabilia, toys, and trinkets around my living space. Can you pick out all the cat stuff on the piano? Everywhere I look, I have reminders of cats. To me, this is perfectly normal. To a stranger, it probably instantly pegs me as an eccentric. Oh well!

The funny thing about all these cat trinkets is that I began taking them with me when I would sell books at bookstores or events. People aren’t always so interested in the books, but they want to buy the cat stuff, or handle it. Again, go figure. (Catster writer Angie Bailey told me she has the same experience.)

3. They squeeze into places where you might rather have privacy

Does the bathroom come to mind? What is it about cats and bathrooms? Why does a cat follow me or my husband into the bathroom and stay there? They aren’t so much interested in what’s going on (I don’t think), they just want to be with us in a small room, I guess.

Some cats love to perch on the tub if you’re taking a bath or shower. Zorro is one of these cats. I’ve never seen him play with water, though. I think these actions have more to do with the fact that his loved people are in the shower and he wants to be as close as possible. Thankfully, he’s smart enough not to jump in.

4. They disregard foot-traffic flow

A cat doesn’t care if you travel a certain way on the floor all the time. They’ll lie right in your path. In fact, I think there must be something that draws them to the places we love to walk or the places we love to work. Where I focus, there’s a cat. My cat will nudge his head closer and closer on my computer, until I almost can’t work. Maybe that’s the idea. “You’re spending too much time staring at that screen! Get up and pay me some attention, Mom!”

Do I care if they’re violating boundaries? Nope. I try to remember the wise words of a Catster commenter (thanks, Ceij) on the article I just wrote about denying things to cats and dogs. Life is short and unpredictable. Someday, that lovely cat won’t be in my path, or following me to the bathroom, or draping herself over my chair — and I will miss her. I still remember my first beautiful cat, who would drape herself over my arm and my husband’s arm for hours. We let her stay there. She loved being close to us. Maybe it’s not so much violating boundaries as it is communicating — “We love you. We share a bond. Be here now!”

Do your cats violate your boundaries like mine do? Share your thoughts in the comments!

More by Catherine Holm:

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About Catherine Holm: Told that she is funny but doesn’t know it, accused of being an unintentional con artist by her husband, quiet, with frequent unannounced bursts into dancing liveliness, Cat Holm loves writing about, working for, and living with cats. She is the author of The Great Purr (cat fantasy novel out June 1), the cat-themed memoir Driving with Cats: Ours for a Short Time, the creator of Ann Catanzaro cat fantasy story gift books, and the author of two short story collections. She loves to dance, be outside whenever possible, read, play with cats, make music, do and teach yoga, and write. Cat lives in the woods, which she loves as much as really dark chocolate, and gets regular inspiration shots along with her double espresso shots from the city.

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