Cats know when you’re going to take a trip. They sense it — and resent it.
Behind their beady eyes is a knowing, a distant memory of hours spent in solitude. Even a neighbor lady’s frequent visits don’t compare with having available computer keys to stroll upon, a lap for depositing clingy cat hair or the familiar sound of a wrenching scream when claws meet sofa leather.
Vindication for abandonment can entertain a feline for weeks prior to an owner leaving to frolic.
Plan A – Find a way to irritate owner days in advance of departure.
Plan B – Find more ways to irritate owner days in advance of departure.
Some cats are successful. Others not so much. I can safely say that our tuxedo cat, Oreo, has been successful — incredibly successful.
No, it hasn’t been something as simple as kicking sand out of the litter pan or dotting the carpet with hairballs. Oh no. This strategy took cunning cat contemplation; a plan to chew over in advance.
“My big toe is killing me,” my husband complained as he unlaced his ankle-high boots. “I must have cut my toenail too short.”
I watched while Bill rubbed his foot. The cat watched too, a sly smile spreading across its face.
Two, maybe three weeks passed while Bill limped — and Oreo smirked.
“I can’t believe your foot is still hurting you,” I commented one day as Bill hobbled toward the door. “It seems like your toenail would have grown out by now.
Bill paused. The cat stared.
Retracing his steps, Bill sat down on the stairway and removed one boot. He reached inside, all the way to the toe of the shoe.
There, wedged tightly, was the cause of his pain. A soft catnip mouse toy had been covertly hiding for days on end.
The cat knew we were leaving town. And wasn’t that just like an annoyed feline to try to trip us up?