Life in a Cat house

Stan Johnson - Life in a Cat House




Our cat Skittles decided to stage a protest last week. She didn’t carry a picket sign, but she didn’t need one to get her point across.

It all started Monday morning when my wife, Vivian, announced it was time to change the bedding to winter mode. That involved mattress flipping and rotating, heavier blankets and a switch in bedspreads.

The first step in the process was to roust Skittles up from her nap where she’d been since having a bite of breakfast. Her usual morning routine is to get up to eat and go straight back to bed. She was kind of grumpy about getting moved, but it was going to get much worse for her.

When the change-over was complete, for some reason Skittles didn’t like it. Instead of going back to bed or taking a spot on the couch, she went into my little home office and staked out a place on a counter in the far corner.

She almost never goes in that room and when she does it’s only for a few minutes.

Not that time, though. She sat there to pout for a long time.

Later, she ignored the bed when it was time to sleep. We have a short padded stool by Vivian’s recliner that is really a cat step. The cats can jump up on it and then it’s only a short step to the chair arm, where they like to sit so Vivian can pet them. Skittles chose the stool as her bed for the night. She has used it as a step many times, and sometimes sits on it, but she had never before slept on it.

The next day, instead of going to sleep on the bed, she went to her pillow by the window in the utility room. No way was she going anywhere near the bed.

We don’t know for sure why remaking the bed she likes upset her. It must smell different, since nothing else is much changed. Friday is the usual sheet changing day at our house, and fresh sheets have never bothered her. Could it have been because it was Monday? Skittles is a smart cat, but I doubt she knows what day of the week it is.

I don’t think it’s the sheets that are the cause. It has to be the blankets or bedspread.

They were all freshly laundered and dried on an outside line. They smelled good to people and I’d think they smelled good to a cat.

Our other cat, Ozrow, had no problems with the new bedding.

He flopped down on it and snoozed as usual, both during the day and at night.

Actually, at night he was probably happy he didn’t have to share any bed space with Skittles.

We thought the stool would be a temporary refuge for a night or two, but Skittles held out until Thursday morning. She spent nights and days on the stool until then, when she finally got up for a snack and went to reclaim her spot on the bed.

She made her feelings known and now the protest appears to be over.