If you see a whole thing - it seems that it's always beautiful. Planets, lives... But up close a world's all dirt and rocks. And day to day, life's a hard job, you get tired, you lose the pattern. - Ursula K. LeGuin

Monday, May 3, 2010

The Good, The Bad, & The Ugly: Animal Edition

We have three pets living in the House of Dirt and Rocks.

The Good (She really is the sweetest pup ever)

The Bad (He can be evil but I love him)

And The Ugly (Actually she's very cute but she is an ugly pet to own)

I write frequently about the first two but have never really described TOC before. TOC (not her real name) stands for The Other Cat. Its not a good pseudonym for her. The other day I told b her name was Smudgy McDoodle, or Smudge. That seems more fitting. [All of our animals have multiple nicknames. Pupzilla is also Pupsicle, Puppy Chulu, and Maximus Fartimus, just to name a few.]

We have a love/hate relationship with TOC/Smudge. Most of the time it is closer to hate than to love. I know that sounds horrible but the truth is you don't always like every family member you have but like them or not, they are still family. You stand by them and you love them even if most of the time you wish they would just disappear.

Smudge is odd. She stares at walls. She will stare at the door without saying a word until someone notices that she wants to go out. That's not really the part we dislike however. I think the part that gets me the most is the amount that she vomits. There isn't anything physically wrong with her. She's been doing it since she was a kitten (she's 10 years old) and several doctors have checked her out. She may be bulimic as she often does it after gorging herself (and she's never weighed more than 6 1/2 lbs). When I say vomit, I really mean projectile spewing. Luckily it starts out fairly loud so about half the time we can catch her at it before she throws up on something valuable. A few weeks ago she threw up on my pillow while I was sleeping. Unfortunately I wasn't fast enough that time.

As small as she is, she's a fierce fighter. This ability only comes out when humans (like vets) are trying to do something she doesn't like. Around other animals she's quite the chicken. Last month the doctor tried to give her a pill. It took her and the technician several attempts. They used a long pill inserter, a towel, and a syringe filled with water and the doctor still walked away with several deep scratches.

The second thing that bothers me is her need to climb the clothes in my closet (there is no door so I can't keep her out). She has really sharp claws and particularly likes leather. She climbs leather jackets and silk shirts and scratches at my boots. She doesn't seem to possess the ability to completely velvet her claws. She does like affection. In fact she likes a lot of it and if you don't give it to her or if you stop after several minutes, she reminds you of her desire by extending her claw into your arm. Of course if you continue petting her and she likes it too much, she bites you.

She likes people but can't stand any other animal on the planet. The feeling is quite mutual and we often need to rescue her from the neighbors' cats when she's outside. When she's inside we have to rescue her from The Brute. Pupzilla no longer cares about her one way or the other but she still hisses and claws at her whenever she gets too close. To get away from the other animals she sometimes climbs into the kitchen cabinets. We try to catproof as many as possible but some are just not set up for locking. I cannot begin to describe the number of glassware she has broken as she walks her way around the shelves.

She is a big fan of the "Make The Bed" game and manages to be in the room every morning when this event happens. Sometimes I play along.

She is a climber and it is one of the few things b respects about her. She used to climb on top of the doors constantly when she was a kitten.

She still does it occasionally. It is her best trick.


Maggie May said...

Your Smudge is colored very similarly to our Hermione, who is also a very odd duck. I love the second cat photo :)

Seeking Solace said...

"Maximus Fartimus"!!!!! LMAO!!!

The Boy is like that. We also call him "Sir Rufus Barkalot.

The kitties are adorable. Cats do have some funny quirks about then. :)

Drax said...

I luv this cat.

Annie said...

Of course, Drax, loves this cat! Smudge sounds wonderful to write about, but hell to live with (except for when she's doing acrobatics, and being loving, I'm sure). Her coloring is interesting, too!

Collette Thomas said...

I used to have cats, but they have all gone on to the Rainbow Bridge. I now have a PeekAPoo Puppy who this morning gnawed on some woodwork that had been recently painted. She also loves to pull laundry out of the basket, and get on top of the bed and throw the pillows to the floor....

But oh don't we love them!

Collette Thomas

Catherine said...

She sounds like a real handful! And I love the photos of her up on the door. How does she get up there?

Yesterday I met the man who used to rent our place (he's a contractor and he's working for our next door neighbors). Anyway, I mention my two cats and he asks if I want another. Once I very quickly say no, he goes on to describe kitty he wants to get rid of--and this one makes yours sound like a walk in the park. She hates people, attacks other animals, and is destructive. Hmmm, I wonder how he would have described her if I'd said yes.

Julie said...

I'm still laughing over Maximus Fartimus. I must steal that name from you and give it to a certain person I know:)

I love your pet posts. The pictures are awesome. Smudge sounds like a handful but is very pretty (in my eyes). Maybe it's the wild look about her that melts my heart.