Earlier this month Camp Kitty was filled to rafters with whiskers, fur and claws. That’s a roundabout way of saying we were full over the July 4th holiday. Because there wasn’t a cabin available I had to take a foster cat, or two, home (some foster kitties have to be put up at night because they cannot be trusted not to set off the alarm or make Stella’s life miserable).
Who to take home? I was thinking about taking Lucas home again, but he came home with me over Memorial Day. Plus, he tends to circle my feet whenever I’m walking. Holding an infant while tripping over a fat orange cat – while it may look hilarious – is kind of dangerous.
I decided to take home both Pickles and Frittata. I wanted to see how they would act in a house and how they were with dogs.
The first two days the girls were at my house wasn’t really any different than the first few days they were at Camp Kitty. Frittata initially was the more adventurous of the two. Or, maybe I should say more trusting because I don’t think I have met another cat more adventurous than Pickles. The girls had their own sanctuary in the guestroom outfitted with litter box, food, water, scratching pads, and the Bergan turbo track. Pickles hid underneath the bed while Frittata sat patiently by the door.
While the dogs were outside and Birdie was sleeping I let the girls out to explore the house. They were obsessed with the kitchen counter. I let them check it out initially, but soon they were met with the squirt bottle.
They walked around the living room, climbed on Birdie’s cat tree, checked out my bedroom and my son’s nursery. They even jumped into the crib. That had me concerned. We don’t have issues with Birdie getting into the crib or on the kitchen counter, because she can’t really jump. She has to put all of her might if she wants to clear anything taller than 30 inches.
Meeting Birdie and the Dogs
Pickles and Frittata first met Birdie and the dogs while behind a gate. As in the past Birdie hissed and Tiggy was extremely curious.
Pickles was not shaken at all. She’s like a honey badger: she does not give a shit. She walked through the gate slats into the living room, sashaying her way past the dogs to go to the kitchen. Pickles does not lack confidence.
On the other hand, little Frittata was slightly nervous. She wanted to be brave, but got hissy when a dog would get too close. She even swatted Linus on the nose. I felt so bad for him because Linus is my sweet dog. After nearly a week she got comfortable enough that the hissing subsided.
Birdie didn’t care for Pickles at all. Who was this cat coming into her home (aka The Bird House) walking around like she owned the place? They kept their distance. Birdie was more tolerant of Frittata because she still had the upper paw with her. Birdie was even nice enough to let Frittata share the bed with us when we took a nap one afternoon.
The Basement and Other Joys
The highlight of the girls’ stay was our unfinished basement. For years that underground slab of cement had been collecting so much stuff like our wedding decorations, my husband’s high school memorabilia, river tubes, various kitchen appliances and utensils, tools, sporting goods, and even a random door. Last month my husband began the project of water sealing the basement. Which meant he cleaned it out and what we kept was moved to one side.
The empty side provided a wonderful open area for the girls to run around while the cluttered side was a place of serious feline exploration. Even the HVAC ducts was Pickles’s own above ground highway (yes, she jumped onto the ducts and walked on top of them).
What else did Pickles love? My son’s activity play yard. Anyone with a child is familiar with the soft pad that has fun toys hanging from above. The play yard allows my son to develop his motor skills and association skills, and apparently allows kitties to go nuts kicking and swatting.
After a week the girls were brought back to camp much to the delight of Schroeder (he was kind of lonely without his playmates). In the end, Pickles should probably go to a home where she’s the only cat. She’s pretty fearless so she would do well with dogs and kids. Frittata would be fine with laid back dogs, another cat or even being the only cat.