THEY LOOK INNOCENT, BUT . . .
My furry babies wore me out tonight. I have a routine for cleaning litter boxes, feeding cats, and providing them with clean water. I try to multi-task and do those things along with a load or two of laundry since litter boxes and feeding stations are in the lower level of my home, not far from the utility room.
First of all, the furry little feral girls (Gracie and Annie), who reside in cages for now, made some big messes today. Granted, their cages are not huge, so they don't have much room to play but they have ample room for eating, sleeping, and bathroom needs. Unfortunately, their bathroom, sleeping, and eating accomodations became one in the same today, as they dumped their soiled litter boxes onto their blankets and into their food and water bowls. All I could guess was they might have been jumping around playing or perhaps had become frightened some time during the day. At any rate, they were a mess. As usual, some of the other cats lined up to watch me clean the messes. I'm now used to being observed and supervised. The cats also jumped into their own recently cleaned litter boxes and re-marked their territory. That's typical.
I'd barely finished cleaning up "the girls", when I had to deal with some messes of my own making. I'd cleaned and refilled one of the larger water dishes and attempted to set it on top of Gracie's cage until I was ready to take it to the other side of the room. I missed. Don't ask me how I missed, I've no idea. I thought I'd reached high enough but I hadn't. Poor Gracie didn't know what to do when cold water from the dish came raining down around her. It soaked her clean blanket and flooded her food bowl. She took refuge in her litter box and sat there staring at me with big green eyes. She looked frightened and I wondered if she thought I'd conjured up a special form of water torture just for her.
Not only did I have to clean her cage again, I also had to mop the floor. I finished those tasks, went into the utility room, and narrowly missed stepping into a big pile of kitty barf - again. Someone in my clan has a sensitive stomach but I don't know for sure who it is. On the days I'm on the lookout for errant barf, it doesn't come. I suppose that should please me, but it often appears when I least expect it. Maybe the cats have conjured up their own plan of torture just for me.
So, an hour and 45 minutes later, I had finished the cat care and some laundry. I decided I'd had enough and thought it was time to tuck the furry ones in for the night. They had all come downstairs to see what I was doing anyway, the nosy little things. I thought I'd secured all of them and went upstairs just in time to see Timmy, the feral boy, scurrying under a chair. I don't like to chase the cats. That scares them and makes them less trusting, so I waited for him to come out on his own. He didn't. I tipped the chair and he went sailing across the room.
Although I'd grabbed a towel in case I needed to wrap Timmy in it, he ran downstairs on his own. Unfortunately, I had closed the door to his room, so when I arrived at the bottom of the stairs, Timmy made a dash for freedom and ran past me and back upstairs. I cracked open the cat room door so when I ushered him down the stairs again, he could go straight through the opening. I checked to see where the other cats were and found them curled up in their beds sleeping - or so I thought.
I went back upstairs to find Timmy under the couch and coaxed him back downstairs. He went straight into the cat room, as planned. I closed the door and congratulated myself on my cleverness. I climbed back up the stairs and felt relieved most of my work was done for the night, but then I noticed Blooper was sitting in the livingroom window. When had come back upstairs? I thought he'd been sleeping.
Blooper (the black kitty in the photo) is a sweetheart and usually does anything I ask of him, but not tonight. He ran and hid, then peeked out playfully. Any other time, I would have stopped what I was doing and played hide-and-seek with him, but I was tired so I picked him up and took him downstairs. When I came back up, I saw Kelly darting down the hallway. I hadn't seen her come upstairs either. I grabbed the towel I hadn't needed for Timmy and cornered her in the bathroom. I picked her up and she put up quite a fuss, tried to scratch me, and almost wiggled out of my grasp. I was determined she was going downstairs, and she did. I'd finally won a round!
Once again, I came upstairs. I let the dog outside before I sat down to fold some clothes. All of a sudden, Bailey (the white kitty with orange on his ears) came bounding down the hall and into the livingroom. When had he come back upstairs and where had he been hiding? It's a good thing Mandy hadn't known he was out because she would have surely given chase. Bailey came when I called him and lay down for a tummy rub. He's just the sweetest little thing. After I cuddled him and rubbed his tummy, I took him back downstairs and counted tails to make sure every cat was where he was supposed to be. Whew, success at last.
I'm now too tired to fold clothes, empty the dishwasher, or work on my sewing projects. The cats have won again. I'm going to bed.