This Cat is Not Playing

by therevknits

At 5:30 yesterday morning, thunder and lightning woke us up, and Alex and I realized at the same moment that his cat, Mr. Fu, was outside in the storm. We opened the back door to holler for him, and a minute later he answered with his “let me in” scream.

Since we got the robot vacuum, Mr. Fu pretty has adjusted his schedule to avoid it. He pretty much comes in to eat, use the litterbox, and nap. Roomba or no, he was coming in out of the rain yesterday.

He ate and then he wanted to play with one of his fuzzy glitter balls. I threw it, and both he and Emily went after it. Emily won. Mr. Fu was not pleased. In fact, he seemed kind of dazzled by the surprise turn of events. What dog plays with little kitty toys? What is the dog going to do with it? The dog is not batting it around like you’re supposed to? And by the way…why was the dog even awake? It’s not even FOOD time yet. Fu seemed totally confused.

Emily usually plays with bones, wanting you to take them away from her and then throw them (yeah, not a great idea.) Once she hit 9 years of age, the vet suggested no more frisbees, so she’s kinda stuck with bones, balls, stuffed toys (which she destroys), and the occasional (in a hushed voice) pig’s ear.

Once she had the kitty’s toy, she wanted to play. In typical boxer fashion, she turned her head from side to side, trying to tempt Mr. Fu to try to take it from her.

When out of the blue, comes that little killer’s paw, and snap, the game was on… for like two seconds. After huffing and puffing and looking interested, Emily had to face the fact that she had a silly cat toy in her mouth and the cat was not interested in trying to take it back.

The cat was so completely over all of it that he just went to sleep on the other couch until Roomba began its scheduled maintenance of the living room carpet.

Mr. Fu has lived with me and Em since Alex went to Italy for four months last year, and he and Em have still not quite figured out how to play with each other. They snuggle, they do tricks together (oh yeah, I said that), but they can’t quite figure out how to play together. They play separately in the same room, occasionally knocking into one another and then not quite finding the way to interlock their games. The cat’s claws come out or the dog steps on the cat’s tail, and it’s game over.

This morning at 5:30, thunder rumbled, and I heard a strange “Eow” at the door. There was no “m” in that “meow,” but I just thought he was insistent. Yeah, no. Turns out he was howling around the live bird in his mouth. Okay, a semi-live bird. As soon as he deposited the bird on the carpet, he let out a yowl of triumph, which, of course, brought Emily running in to see what was up with that. Mr. Fu looked nauseatingly proud of himself, and Emily looked… impressed. She seemed totally into the cat’s suggestion that she jump in on this half-dead animal action. Just as Emily was starting the boxer prance dance to begin the  game they really could play together, Alex (my knight in shining pajama pants) arrived with a spatula and delivered the bird back to the great outdoors. Then he lectured the cat on the difference between killing to eat and killing for fun while I yelled “cat assassin” in Italian.

Ick. Ick on so many levels. Ick. Even Roomba can’t clean that image from my mind. As soon as Alex re-wakes up, I will let Roomba clean the living room carpet, no matter what the cat thinks.