1 February 2018 to JJ
I was making the bed and Tabs thought she’d be helpful and go to sleep on the duvet before I could get the bedcover back on. The cats were asleep for quite sometime but are now having a mad time.
Who knew they were so inquisitive and could get into such small nooks and crannies? Or would be interested in sniffing out piles of papers? I’ve just had to rescue some of mine. And stop Tux nosing at David’s. We bought another filing cabinet so hopefully some of his paperwork will disappear.
We have jars of treats in the three rooms where we’ve got scratching boards and they get rewarded for using them. But, sad to say, the treats also get used in bribery. Just had to give one to Tux to get him out from behind David’s desk.
I must find a way to stop the cats getting behind there and also behind the washing machine. I’ve got a stop gap there at the moment but it needs something more permanent.
Both cats love to sit on the window sill or on the cat tree and watch the world go by but will often take the scenic route down: along the window sill behind the curtain, onto the shelf, squeeze behind the large printer, down onto the coffee table and then the floor. Quite daft.
New job for David, new life for me and more structure to our days. At least this is having a good affect on my delayed sleep pattern, though I was later than intended last night because the cats had a mad hour just when we wanted to sleep. Poor David was sleeping because he had to be up at 7am but the cats were play fighting on the bed. In the end I shut them out of the bedroom at 12.30 so I could go to bed.
I shall tell the sleep clinic consultant at Papworth next month that he should recommend all his patients get two kittens.
8 February 2018 from JJ
How are you getting on with your furry friends now that David is not there during the day to help you lose control of them?
8 February 2018 to JJ and DE
Nobody told me that having the two cats would mean I’d have to argue with them over who gets to sit in my office chair! Denied access to the chair means I can’t get to the computer.
As soon as I move away one or other of them jumps into it, sometimes both together. And then they lie there, looking totally innocent, defying me to disturb their snoozing.
I’ve put a folded fleece throw on David’s chair and I lift them from my chair onto it. And position the chair close to my desk, with its back to and away from David’s desk.
I have to be very careful when opening the front door so I entice the cats into the sitting room and firmly shut the office door before going out.
But the other day, when I got back, they were both in the office. Apparently firmly shut isn’t quite as firm as I thought. So now I/we have to barricade the office door with a heavy box before going out.
The first time, when I got back and opened the office door, they were sat side by side waiting for me, wearing their best neglected and ‘hard done by’ cat expressions. I swear if they could they’d have had their front paws crossed across their chest and demanded “what time do you call this?” I was only out for two hours.
Tux is a very inquisitive puss and there are several nooks and crannies in here which regularly need inspecting by him but you know how much equipment and therefore cables we have in here. It’s not advisable for small cat to be scrambling amongst everything.
So I was on my knees under David’s desk, blocking off Tux’s access to the equipment and cables at the back. And Tux was crouched beside me, keenly watching what I was doing, trying to see if I’d left any way in!
Settling into a routine with David’s new job and the cats is a bit of a shock to the system. I reckon Rome wasn’t built in a day or even a week so it’s small incremental steps.
Cats don’t believe in you having a lie in bed when they’re waiting to be fed. So, it’s up at 8am and David feeds them whilst making our coffee.
I make the bed at some stage during the day but the time depends on when I coincide with Tabs not being asleep on it.
I couldn’t find Tabs last night. I went all over the place and there was no sign of her. Then I noticed that Tux was lying in front of the door to the cupboard under the stairs, with his nose up against it. I opened the door and Tabs was quietly sitting there in the dark, waiting to be let out.
I learnt very early on to check that the cats haven’t got in there when I’ve been accessing the cupboard but David hadn’t and he had got something out earlier. Well, he has learnt now.
The cats will curl up anywhere, in the weirdest places, singly or together. Tabs favours our bed or the shelf by the window in the cat room and Tux favours the cushion and chair in the cat room. But he can be found on the bed as well. They even doze off on the scratching pads.
They are a lot of fun but they’re also a bit exhausting at this stage. David is so used to having cats that he forgets it’s all a new experience for me.
9 February 2018 from JJ
You sound almost rejuvenated. Hope you continue to enjoy them, and soon get used to your new hours.
15 February 2018 from JJ
How are you and your mischevious little furry friends getting on. Have they driven you crazy yet?
17 February 2018 to JJ
I’m still relatively sane but the cats are crazy, especially when they’re having their mad half hour. When they’re play fighting it’s all paws and mouths on the go with squealing from Tabs as if she’s being murdered. But she gives as good as she gets and when Tux has had enough he makes a beeline for the office window and seeks sanctuary behind the curtains. They can go instantly from fighting to grooming each other.
They seem to have grown a lot in the four weeks we’ve had them, no longer kittens but adolescents. David took Tux for his booster vaccination this afternoon and had him weighed. He was fine.
Manoeuvring around the place is like navigating an obstacle course but with the obstacles likely to move at any second. You don’t just need eyes in the back of your head but front and back of every foot. And moving around at night without putting the light on is taking your life in your hands and risks offended squeals as you tread on a cat.
One moment the coast is clear but the next they’ve quietly crept up to see what you’re doing, especially if you’re in the kitchen making any sort of noise associated with food, so stepping back without looking is hazardous. As David says, hope springs eternal in the feline breast and they will gaze at you with reproach that you’re feeding yourself and not them.
When I go to make the bed, having checked they’re asleep, they miraculously appear to help. And if I stand close to the bed whilst doing something, a paw is likely to shoot out from underneath to grab the laces on my moccasins.
Yesterday there was a knock at the door from a young chap who turned out to be selling household items door to door. I opened the door a crack and told him to hang on whilst I moved the cats from the office. Twice I put them out in the lobby and twice they bust the door open again to see what was going on. I should have put them in the sitting room and shut that door.
Tux in particular is inquisitive, always wants to know what’s going on, alert to any new noises inside or out. Tabs has always been the affectionate lap cat but Tux, whilst liking company has always been more reserved but he is becoming more relaxed and seeking out attention.
Going to sleep with them on the bed or being joined by them during the night is quite nice. But being woken up by a four legged furry alarm clock walking over you is a bit disconcerting, even more so when you open your eyes to find two other eyes peering at you over the sleep apnea mask. Tux can walk all over David’s head but David doesn’t even stir whereas I am instantly awake. If it’s too early I put them out of the bedroom and shut the door so I can get more sleep.
28 February 2018 to JJ
Alas, the cats are growing so quickly they really can’t be called kittens any more. They are great bundles of fun but they sound like a herd of elephants when they’re having a mad half hour, racing up and down stairs and from room to room.
The cat tree in the bay window is a great success but my net curtains are suffering. However, they are only cheap simple nets from Ikea which I bought when faced with the prospect of the large bay window here. I may have to budget to replace them every year or even more frequently but I don’t care, it’s worth it for the fun the cats give us. I don’t think I’ve laughed so much in years.
Tabs is the lap cat but is somewhat lazy and helps herself to Tux’s food if he wanders away without finishing it. Consequently she’s getting podgy. I don’t know how to handle it as they are fed in separate bowls but at the same time and quite close to each other. Tonight, when she’d finished and tried to go for Tux’s bowl, David carried her away.
Tux likes to be near us but has only just started sitting on the lap and that only when he’s in the mood. He is the inquisitive one, downright nosey. He wants to know everything that’s going on and investigates every nook and cranny. And he will amuse himself with the toys in the way that Tabs doesn’t. They are still house cats and I’ve spent a small fortune on toys so they don’t get bored, some with more success than the others. I reckon a bored cat will become a destructive one.
One moment the cats are play fighting, making noises as if one of them is being murdered, the next they’re grooming each other. It’s a bit disconcerting finding clumps of hair torn out in the fighting.
Only Tabs had been vaccinated when we got them. A couple of days after they arrived, David took them both to the vet for a health check and Tux had the first vaccination. A few weeks later he had the booster vet and in the following week he developed a soft mass on his shoulder and he reacted if it was touched. David started giving him anti-inflammatory left from when Tux had the ‘snip’ and Tux stopped reacting if it was touched.
On Saturday David took him to the vet, who was concerned about the size of the mass but hoped it was just an atypical reaction to the booster jab. Tux has to continue with the anti-inflammatory and go back to the vet on Saturday. If the mass hadn’t gone down, it would need to be biopsied in case it is a fast growing cancer. What a horrible thought! Whatever it is, it certainly hadn’t affected his energy levels. Thankfully the lump is diminishing though Tux isn’t so keen on having the anti-inflammatory squirted down his throat. However, that’s better than trying to give him a pill.
Our only complaint about the cats is that they haven’t grasped the idea of a weekend lie in. They still want to be fed at 8am.
We sleep with the bedroom door open and they come and sleep on the bed when they feel like it, which may be at any time. Tabs will just curl up against my legs but Tux has to walk all around, checking we’re present and correct. And that means walking all over us. David sleeps through but I wake up of course. Once he’s satisfied himself, Tux settles down, either on David’s pillow or actually between the two of us. Once they start getting restless I entice them out with a treat each and then firmly close the door.
Next: March 2018