All pets have personalities that are as unique as that of their owners. In our case, the male cats’ personality can be best described as ‘asshole’. He is stubborn, obnoxious, needy, ungraceful and stomps around the house wreaking havoc and catastrophe. He’s lucky he’s really really cute when he sleeps, otherwise he’d be throttled.
His quirks are legion, from locking himself in the bathroom then screaming his indignation on top of his lungs, to choking himself on the rim of a garbage can, to the most annoying of all – the nocturnal burst of energy. Every night between three and five AM he stomps into our bedroom and proceeds to ensure SOMEBODY wakes up and pays attention to him.
Like Simon’s Cat, he begins with a few plaintive meows. Since we ignore those like the champion sleepers we are, he escalates to jumping on the bedside table, knocking off the stray books, hair ties, water glass with his crash landing, and mournfully meows some more. He is deaf, and cannot modulate his voice, so his meows generally have the same tonality as a cow.
If by then someone hasn’t woken up to a) kick him out and shut the door b) lock him up in the bathroom c) attempt catricide, he escalates by doing something incredibly obnoxious, like finding a plastic bag to rummage through, or his new favorite game of launching himself into our wooden blinds, headfirst, to great rattling.
We have kind of tried everything over the years – a visit to the vet ruled out medical problems, water spray is just a fun game, locking him up pre-emptively ensures he yells himself hoarse all night. Keeping the bedroom door locked gets us a serenade under the door, as well as indignant scratching of the two girl cats, who see no reason to be punished for his behavior. We generally resort to blearily waking up, tossing his furiously snorting butt out, and going back to bed with the precision of a racing pit crew member.
Lately James has been working a lot less due to a back injury. Since he is nocturnal at heart, like me, his schedule quickly shifts to staying up quite late, and sleeping in. This means I get a hope of uninterrupted slumber, since him staying up means that *I* get my beauty rest.
However he does it, is fair game – food, toys, whatever it takes. Despite his best efforts, Cheney often wakes me up still by hollering in his nasal whine on top of his lungs. The other night was no different – cat yelled, I blearily stomped him into the bathroom and locked the door.
This week we had the following conversation:
Me: Bad cat management last night.
James: OMG, he was so bad. You obviously put him in the bathroom, I didn’t even know until I went upstairs. He was in there yelling, so I got him out, and put him in the downstairs bathroom. He yelled in there for like a solid hour. Then I took him out and gave him ice cream.
Me: <Crying I’m laughing so hard> This is going to be the extent of your parenting skills, right?