Friday, 30 May 2008

Sniff gets an ultimatum

We've had Sniff for a week now. It's strange to think that it isn't longer, as it certainly feels like it has been, both because it's hard to imagine our life without him, and because of the amount of "cat-stress" he has caused! We started off feeling really sorry for our timid little cat, the big eyes wreaking havoc on us. Now we're beginning to think that actually he's been fine the whole time and has us totally pegged as the big softies we are, using the "big eye trick" to land himself a treat - and yes, it works every time!

He's finally beginning to show some real character (particularly the mischievous side) and it's wonderful to both see his personality emerge and to see him getting more confident in the flat. However, he is an inconsistent little blighter, and this is why we're convinced that it's him training us, not vice versa. On Sunday, only two days into cat ownership we were totally spoiled. He allowed us to pick him up, carry him out of the study and lay on the sofa with us for the whole day watching the cricket. Since then, he won't be picked up, and seems to have become completely inseparable from my desk chair (aka "the hug chair") and he will only allow strokes if he's sitting on it, running away from affection in any other part of the flat, and then looking out from the study with his big eyes as if to suggest we're cruel and evil to not be in there giving him all the strokes in the world.

So this morning, N having dragged himself out of bed after a restless night of work-stress and being shunned by Sniff decided that the time has come to issue an ultimatum: it's been a week, we've been all affectionate and understanding, now it's time for the cat to start returning the love! I think his exact phrase (whilst looking at Sniff perched just outside the study door, comtemptuously licking one paw) was something along the lines of "well Sniff, you'd better buck up and start showing some love or that's it, you're out."

In the cold dreary light of this morning the whole thing was hilarious, and we've spent the whole day giggling about the episode. Especially as it comes after a week of me stressing about whether of not Sniff is settling in, worrying that he doesn't love me (because he wouldn't come up to me) or might love N more, complaining that he wouldn't sit on my lap etc etc etc (and etc). After three days of this N's quiet soothing hugs and calming comments changed to a dead pan "yeah, our cat's rubbish, he's not working, let's shoot him." The shift in tactic clearly worked as it meant I couldn't stress for laughing.

Poor cat. We gave him some "dentibits" (his favourite treat) just to prove we loved him. Like I said, total softies.

Editors note: no cats were harmed before, during or after the writing of this blog, and the owners may have had to pop to Tesco to re-stock on an already depleated supply of dentibits.

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