Friday, August 27, 2010

Who trains whom?

It seems that Sarah has decided to train the cat. I tried my beg-for-treats routine this morning, and she played a cruel trick on me. It was cruel because it worked. We'll see how long I fall for this routine...

Last post, I mentioned that I sit up on the top of the chair and mreow for the treat. Well, today I didn't do that. First, I let her know that the silly dog had eaten all of my food. I didn't tell a lie; she really did eat all of my food. I think Sarah has been skimping on Loretta's food because it's the end of the month. Anyway, Sarah filled my bowl, and I acted all happy and perky. In a few minutes, I pestered her again, paws on the leg. "Hey there, excuse me. I'm still hungry..." I didn't mreow or anything. Just a nice, polite request.

Now the key here is that I haven't begged in several days. This is really important. I think it occurred to Sarah that I might be in danger... You know, I might actually get a hairball! And that could have extremely unpleasant repercussions for her.

This is where things take a turn I don't like. The computer chair is my territory. The bed is Inca and Sierra's territory. I do not share my territory with anybody. It is enough that I share a house at all. Sarah already makes me share a food bowl; but there are certain things I just will not do. Going near Inca or Sierra is one of those things; and we all have a generally mutual understanding about this. Inca has even started making Sarah put the food on the bed when I am lounging in the chair so that I don't have to see her ugly face through my closed eyelids.

Now, Sarah has been very respectful of these boundaries during the past seven years that I have been part of her family. The only time she violated them, I forgave her. More on that in another post. When she feeds me my treats, she always gives them to me in my chair so that Inca and Sierra won't touch them.

Sarah has this weird fascination with making me eat treats out of her hand. I think it is crazy; but she seems to think I can learn to take treats without nipping her. Well, of course, I can! What a ridiculous notion: Nipping isn't about lack of self-control! It is about me trying to tell you something that you haven't already heard, you silly human! But I have obliged her and have "learned" to take treats very nicely out of her hand while sitting on the back of my chair. I have even learned to eat them without dropping a single morsel. Now that is an accomplishment--I have this bad habit of being a very messy eater.

Well, this morning Sarah pulled one over on me. She held the treats in her hand from her perch on the bed; and I was so stinking hungry that I went and took them and stood there and ate them. I went to Inca's territory for treats! I am mortified! It must never happen again, no matter how hungry I am! I must retrain Sarah!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010


Again I haven't been able to get to the blog. Sarah has been busy starting other blogs. You can see the feeds on her web site if you want to know what has been keeping me away. In my absence, I've also been developing a new talent to make sure that she feeds me. I have learned to beg for cat treats.

I must explain--I wouldn't want to overstate my talents. In the past, I had a habit of biting when I was hungry. Sarah decided to "nip this in the bud" by free-feeding me. Then she decided that I was just a bit addicted to my food, so she started feeding me once a day. I learned to put my front paws on her legs when I was hungry--you know, when there were still a few kibbles left and I wasn't quite sure that I would have enough to gorge myself. She seemed satisfied with that. (Inca's method of asking for food is to jump on the desk and knock things around; and Sarah hasn't managed to train her to do anything differently. I think that means I am smarter than Inca.)

So when Sarah started giving us Friskies hairball treats, I decided that I had to refine my food-gathering technique. She just doesn't give them out often enough. They really are quite good, you see, and Sarah just didn't understand when I put my paws on her. She would check the food bowl and scold me for lying to her about it being empty.

So I added something new to my routine. After putting my paws on her, I ran and jumped up on the back of the desk chair. Then I let out a loud, authoritative "Mreow!" In fact, it was the very same "Mreow!" that I let out the first time she gave me a treat. That should settle the matter.

It worked all right--for about a week. She's on to me now and won't treat me at my request anymore. I'll have to revise my technique again...