Cat tales: Tails of bravery

Published Dec 15, 2012 04:09am

Like I have said many times before, we, cats are amazing. Bring us into your house and we bring you so much happiness. We may appear distant and snobby but we can be silly too and make you laugh.

Like when I try to catch my tail, or when I stand in front of the computer screen while my human is working on the computer. I nap all day, but when she turns on the computer to do a little work I jump right up on her desk and block the whole screen so she can’t see anything.

She always wonders why I do that! But I’m not telling! That is what makes us amazing and mysterious.

How a little piece of plastic like a bottle top can become our newest toy. We like to ignore expensive cat toys bought at the store, like mice and feathers and balls, but a little piece of plastic and we go crazy. You could call it catism!

Another something that drives my human nuts is that she can call my name softly or yell it across the house, if I’m lounging or napping, I refuse to move. But when I hear a tin opener, I can come running from across the lawn — because a tin opener means ‘dinner’!

Sometimes she can talk to me and I opt for silence even when she is asking me questions that I would love to answer. “Do you want dinner?” Or “Are you feeling cold? Want some milk?”

But at other times I say a series of meows to her and leave her totally confused as to whether I was upset, happy, cribbing or telling her something important.

Inspecting anything new that comes into the house — be it furniture, shopping or presents is more catism. We must inspect everything like a customs officer. Killing imaginative bugs that humans cannot see is another bit of catism. Staring at the wall or the carpet and suddenly we are pouncing and chasing something.

Another interesting thing we love to do is to sniff your hands especially after you have eaten or cooked something. It doesn’t matter if you washed your hands or not, we can always smell traces of food and love it even more if it was seafood that you were handling.

We are trying to say, “Where’s my treat? You should have shared it with me.”

More ‘catist’ moves? Okay, here goes. We love to crawl into discarded shopping bags and cartons. We love to wiggle our fat behind into scrunched paper bags that make a noise when we crawl in. If there’s a little surprise left in, we love to bring it down, destroy it... chew it or lose it.

On a more serious note, there are some cats that are more amazing than others. Like Oscar who was brought to a nursing home in Rhode Island, US, with four other therapy cats to make the patients feel more at home. He did cat stuff that normally cats do but one day some nurses noticed that Oscar seemed to develop an interest in some of the residents just before they died.

After months of observation of Oscar’s behaviour and patterns of patient deaths, a doctor who surprisingly didn’t like cats claimed that Oscar was perhaps reacting to chemical changes in the patient’s body, or perhaps the lack of movement. Oscar’s story was published in medical journals. They could not identify the special sense that Oscar had but could confirm his comforting behaviour and love for patients who were near death.

Some called him ‘bionic’ and some called him ‘furry angel’ but this two-year-old kitty knew something more than other cats and humans and for his work he is highly regarded by the doctors and nurses at the nursing home and, of course, by the families of the patients.

Who said cats are lazy?

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