Basic Rules For Cats Who Run A House
DOORS: Do not allow closed doors in any room. To get a door opened, stand on hind legs and hammer it with forepaws.
Once door is opened, it is not necessary to use it. After you have ordered an "outside" door opened, stand halfway in and out and think about several things. This is particularly important during very cold weather, rain, snow, or mosquito season. Swinging doors are to be avoided at all costs.
GUESTS: Quickly determine which guest hates cats the most. Sit on that lap.
For sitting on laps or rubbing against trouser legs, select fabric which contrasts well with your fur. For example: white-furred cats go to black wool clothing. NOTE: Velvet takes precedence over all other cloth.
For the guest who exclaims, "I love kitties!" be ready with aloof disdain, apply claws to stockings or arms, or use a quick nip on the ankle.
Always accompany guests to the bathroom. It is not necessary to do anything -- just sit there and stare.
HAMPERING: If one of your humans is engaged in some close activity and the other is idle, stay with the busy one. This is called "helping" otherwise known is "hampering." Some rule:
a) When supervising cooking, sit just behind the left heel of the cook. You cannot be seen and thereby stand a better chance of being stepped on and then picked up and comforted.
b) For book readers, get in close under the chin, between eyes and book, unless you can lie across the book itself.
c) For knitting projects or paperwork, lie on the work in the most appropriate manner to obscure the maximum amount. Pretend to dose but every so often reach out and slap the pencil or knitting needles. Sit on the paperwork they are working on. Roll around on the papers, scattering them to the best of your ability. After being removed for the second time, push pens pencils, and erasers off the table, one at a time. Embroidery and needlepoint make great hammocks.
d) When a human is holding the newspaper in front of him/her be sure to jump at the back of the paper. They love surprises.
e) Dart out quickly and as close as possible in front of the human, especially: on stairs; when they have something in their arms; in the dark; and when they first get up in the morning. This will help their coordination skills.
f) When a human is attempting to "make the bed," hop on it and curl up in the center , or pounce on the sheet the human is trying to rearrange. If the human tries to ignore you by covering you with the sheets, move around and try to mess things up. Protest loudly when you're evicted.
g) Laundry presents many opportunities to hamper. Laundry fresh from the dryer is a perfect bed, since it is warm and soft. As soon as it is put down for sorting, arrange yourself for a nap. If the human removes you, keep returning until the laundry isn't warm anymore. Now it's playtime. Pounce on anything the human tries to move around for folding, especially socks and nylons. For added fun, grab a sock and hide under the bed with it.
PLAY: This is an important part of your life. Get enough sleep in the daytime so you are fresh for your nocturnal games. Below are listed below are several cat games. It is important though to maintain one's Dignity at all times. If you should have an accident during play, such as falling off a chair, immediately wash a part of your body as if to say "I MEANT to do that!" It fools those humans every time.
a) Catch Mouse: The humans would have you believe that those lumps under the covers are their feet and hands. They are actually Bed Mice, rumored to be the most delicious of all the mice in the world, though no cat has ever been able to catch one. Maybe YOU can be the first.
b) King of the Hill: This game must be played with at least one other cat. Sleeping humans are the hill which must be defended at all costs from the other cat(s). Anything goes. This game allows for the development of unusual tactics as one must consider the unstable playing field.
WARNING: Playing games (a) and (b) to excess will result in expulsion from the bed. Should the humans grow restless, immediately begin purring and cuddle up to them. This should buy you some time until they fall asleep again. If one happens to be on a human when this occurs, this cat wins the round of King of the Hill.
c) Tag: This game requires two or more cats and may include a dog. One cat is It. The other(s) chase him around the house until they catch up. Then follows the Scrimmage, after which the cat who caught the other becomes It and is chased around. Great fun but has the greatest potential for loss of dignity from maneuvers such as the Non-Carpeted Floor Skid and the Throw Rug Wipeout. Whenever such a situation occurs, all felines must immediately wash themselves. Dogs are generally too stupid to do this and may continue to play. In this case, the dog automatically becomes It and should be subjected to the Pileup.
d) Tube Mouse: This is a game played in the bathroom. Next to the Big White Drinking Bowl is a roll of soft white paper which is artfully attached to the wall so that it can spin. Inside this roll is the Tube Mouse. When you grab the paper, the Tube Mouse will spin frantically as it tries to escape from you. When the Mouse is exposed, it dies of fright and stops spinning.
4.2 TOYS: Any small item. If a human tries to confiscate it, this means it is a Valuable Toy. Run with it under the bed. Look outraged when the human takes it away. Watch where it is put so you can steal it later. Two reliable sources of toys are dresser tops and wastebaskets. Below are listed several types of cat toys.
a) Bright shiny things like keys, brooches or coins should be hidden so the other cat(s) and humans can't play with them. They are generally good for playing hockey with on uncarpeted floors.
b) Dangling and/or string-like things such as shoelaces, cords, gold chains and dental floss also make excellent toys. They are favorites of humans who like to drag them across the floor for us to pounce on. When a string is dragged under a newspaper or throw rug, it magically becomes the Paper/Rug Mouse and should be killed at, all costs. Note that playing with shoelaces when the human is trying to tie them is a great source of Hampering.
c) Within paper bags dwell the Bag Mice. They are small and the same color as the bag, so they are hard to see, but you can easily hear the crinkling noises they make as they scurry around the bag. Anything, including shredding the bag, can be done to kill them. Note: any cat you find in a bag hunting for Bag Mice is fair game for a Sneak Attack, which will usually result in a great Tag match.
FOOD: Eating, however, is only half the fun. The other half is getting the food. Cats have two ways to obtain food: convincing a human you are starving to death and must be fed "NOW" and hunting for it oneself. The following are guidelines for getting fed.
a) When the humans are eating, make sure you leave the tip of your tail in their dishes when they are not looking.
b) The best times to inform humans of your dish's emptiness are when they are unable to ignore you, such as when they are sleeping or on the toilet.
c) Should you catch something of your own outside, it is only polite to attempt to get to know it. Be insistent - your food will usually not be so polite and try to leave.
SCRATCHING POSTS: It is advised that cats use anything which is most useful to you. They are very protective of what they think is their property and will object strongly if they catch you sharpening your claws on it. Sharpening your claws on a human is a definite no-no!
WATER: Dripping taps are the best sources of fresh water. Toilets are the next best. It is imperative that any sound of running water be investigated immediately for a possible drink. A plaintive meow and licking the faucet usually will get most humans to turn on the tap.
VACUUM CLEANER: This appalling Beast is known by many names, "Cat Eater" being the most prevalent. Humans will turn into raging monsters while under its influence, sucking up all the carefully shed cat hair and terrorizing the feline residents with evil glee. All you can do is run and hide.
Occasionally, the humans are forced to open the vacuum cleaner and remove a swollen bag from within. This is its stomach, and must be destroyed at all costs. Do not worry if the human yells at you, for the yell is really that of the Beast in pain.
SLEEPING HUMANS: It is known that sleeping humans are boring. The "direct approach" is nearly always successful in rejuvenating a dormant human. Do one of the following:
Trample, purr, meow or head-butt. If the human is being stubborn, you may have to resort to more drastic tactics, such as ripping down posters, rattling blinds, or singing at the top of your voice. Eventually the human will get up and do what you want, usually in a disgruntle manner.
MORNINGS: In order to provide for you, the humans must leave the domain every morning (usually before you take your first cat nap). To help them on their way, howl loudly, massage their scalps with your claws, or gently bounce on top of them in bed. See GAMES. The best time to do this is about 24 minutes before their alarm clock goes off. We must protect them from that blaring noise for it could ruin their hearing.
MEDICINE: The vet is where your human takes you when you are sick. The place smells funny; there are cats, dogs and awful things like needles and pills. Don't let humans cat-handle you. The following are some tips for dealing with vets and medicine.
a) When you see the carrier come out, run and hide. Once the human grabs you, struggle gamely. Splay your legs out so it is difficult to cram you into the carrier. If the human is trying to put you in with another pet, allow the other pet to bolt out the door. In the car, meow plaintively all the way to the vet's. Reach through the bars of the carrier and claw the human as s/he drives. At the vet's, once again splay your legs and brace yourself against the carrier's walls so they can't dump you out easily.
b) At home, resist attempts to feed you pills or liquid medicine. As soon as you hear the pill bottle rattle, hide. Resist attempts to open your mouth. Squirming is good. Shake your head vigorously to remove any medicine placed in your mouth. Refuse any food that smells like it may have had medicine sprinkled in it.
ILLNESS: If you have to throw up, get to a chair quickly. If you cannot manage in time, get to an Oriental rug. If there is no Oriental rug, shag is good. When throwing up on the carpet, make sure you back up so it is longer then a human's bare foot.
CONCLUSION: Humans need to know basic rules. They can be taught if you start early and are consistent. You will then have a smooth running household.