Monday, November 07, 2005

Held hostage by our cat

We have a whopping 26 lbs. of a cat. At night in the dark, I've mistaken a full grown raccoon for him. We got him at the animal shelter about six years ago. His name is Shaggy. There used to be a Scooby, but she disappeared shortly after Elise was born. He was part of a litter of kittens that had been raised by foster care providers. The mom was not with the kittens when we chose them. When our cats continued to grow, rivaling the size of mountain lions we realized why; they have ordinances in our town against such animals. She would have been confiscated at the city limits sign.

My brother has a stuffed wildcat, that along with a few deer antlers was his principle housing decor before he got married. Our cat is, I kid you not, as big as that stuffed cat. If, well, when he dies, we are going to try to donate him the the Cabellas Store in Fort Worth. They have a diorama of stuffed animals. I think he'd like being in a crouching position his eyes focused intently and eternally on a bevy of quail or a colony of field mice. In this life his lumbering mass of a body can never get that close. Those tiny animals mock him.

He essentially holds us hostage at night. If we turn on a bedroom light, laugh too loud, if Elise cries he comes to our window and cries. He paws at the screen. This can go on for thirty minutes if he is hungry, and he's been on a diet for five years.

He can open any door in the house that doesn't have a lock on it. We have those lever style door handles. He reaches up with one paw and pulls on the handle. With his other paw he pushes open the door. He can also get doors open if they open towards him as well, but this takes some maneuvering. He has to pop the handle and then coax the door open by "pulling" it with his paws from underneath.

Right now I've fed him his rations for the morning, but he still wants more. He is sitting at the locked back door, begging.

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