As I have mentioned before, Callie came to me as a runaway, and it has been a give and take love affair ever since. She is the most engaging cat I have ever known, and her personality trait that stands out the most, is CHARM! She will charm her way into any given situation and disciplining her is a challenge because she’s so sweet. I really did make an effort in the beginning of our relationship, to be the alpha female and to keep her from sleeping in the bed with us. I have never allowed a pet to sleep with me before Callie. I sprayed her with water, I forcefully grabbed her and threw her out of the bedroom, shutting the door, and nothing has worked. She would press her cute little pink nose under the door jam and howl her disapproval, until you reluctantly let her back in. Then she would quietly sneak back up to the foot of the bed, where she felt she belonged, and try not to move. She could only hope I wouldn’t notice, until she would explode again into a loud purr of such bliss that it would make you smile at the innocence of it all. You can’t help but love her because she has learned the art of seduction and charm and it just seems to come natural to her. She charms her way into getting you to be her slave. I am now willingly getting up at night to feed her, and she will sleep right between my husband and me if the latest bed I bought doesn’t suit her, and there is nothing I can do about it, unless I want to feel guilty and mean hearted. She is family and families should sleep together. At night when it is time for her to go to bed, she tries to herd me into the bedroom where I belong. She gets pouty if I stay up past my usual bedtime. When we head off to bed, you can just see the smile on her face and her happiness at going off to bed together. She is so social and vocal, and thinks of herself as a high standing member of the family, that you can’t help but treat her as an equal. Every once in awhile she displays a wild and crazy side, and I have to play a game I call, “rough and tumble” playtime, to work off the pent up energy. It is important that I establish who is stronger and more dominant because torties, or calico cats, are known for being big cats in little bodies; just like Jack Russel Terriers are famous for. So, I rough her up within an inch or her life until she cries out for MERCY! You have to engage them in numerous activities, and keep them occupied and stimulated, and make sure they know that you are the boss, or you will be in big trouble. I have met my match with Callie, and have accepted the fact that she wins most of the small battles, but all I have to do is give in and try not to be so up tight about our relationship. She is just a little cat trying to make a big impression in her life. I haven’t figured out where to draw the line yet, but I am trying to hold onto some kind of dominance. Ya, right…sure I am. Dream on… She is a tiny little cat with a giant personality, and all she wants is to be loved, and of course, to get her way….
It has been awhile since I last posted a blog, and I thought since I have no plans for travel just yet, I would take a side trip and talk about cats and their preference for any bed other than the one you spent money on. I am sure I am not alone in this predicament. I shop at Petco or Petsmart and I have found a vast array of beautiful beds ranging from inexpensive to spending a fortune. The difficult part comes not from whether you will find an awesome bed, but whether your cat will bother to sleep in it. Callie seems to love any new bed I bring home for a couple of weeks or so, and then she won’t touch it, and leaps away in disdain when I attempt to encourage her. She goes from having a love affair with her new bed, to breaking off the relationship with no possibility of reconciliation. Attempts at getting her back in the bed are met with all four legs spread and claws extended and an absolute aversion to even touching it. After several years of dealing with this problem, I have chanced upon a solution. One trick I have discovered, that I thought I would share, is leaving the bed in a place where it shouldn’t be. There is something about a cat’s nature that drives a cat to do exactly what it isn’t suppose to do, and Callie is no exception. She thrives on the feeling that she just might get into trouble and finding the bed in the least expected place must have sent a thrill up her spine. So, I bought this incredible “Kong” bed, that looks like a little fluffy house, and even has a darling stuffed feather bird dangling in the entranceway. It is plush and beautiful and goes with my decor. Now, what cat wouldn’t love this new bed? It is roomy and cozy and a dream to look at. I love this bed…. After much reflection, I placed it up on top of the TV cabinet in the master bedroom and waited for her to discover it. It didn’t take long! You know how cats are, they are always exploring their territory and some days act like they have never been there before. Coming across something unexpected must be a joyous occasion. When Callie found the new bed, I am sorry to say, I wasn’t around to witness it. What I did find, is Callie blissed out and curled up, sleeping inside her new house bed about three days after purchasing it, and it brought me to my happy dance. This lasted for about a week and I could hardly believe my good fortune. On the second week she started to do her usual rejection routine, when she discovered she could stomp on the roof of the bed and truly make it her own. Several times I have straightened up the roof and each time she would jump back up on the roof and flatten it out. It doesn’t look nearly as comfortable, nor does it look like some nice addition to my home anymore, but she is determined to sleep on the roof. This bed has not lost its appeal and it is going on several months now because I think she knows I want to straighten out the roof, fluff up the blanket, and ask her to sleep inside where she belongs. I swear she knows it is bothering me that the house is all smashed in and she is sleeping on the roof. It looks ugly now, but at least she is still enjoying her bed, so I am controlling the impulse to straighten out the collapsed roof and try not to complain. The secret to keeping Callie happy, is compromise on my part, and letting her have a say in what she likes and doesn’t like, and then letting her think she is getting away with murder.