Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Close Encounters of the Kitty-Cat Kind

I was chatting on line with a friend recently and the subject got around to cats…well, her cats since I’ve become so allergic to them that I can’t have one anymore. In particular, she commented that she had to go “scoop the litter box,” because, with three cats sharing, it was a regular…if whiffy…chore.

Back in my Momcat days, I had several little purry furballs and one of them didn’t like sharing the box. I tried additional litter boxes, but since I couldn't keep the other cats out of the extra boxes, she still went around full of wounded dignity, her dainty little nose in the air. Fortunately she was an indoor-outdoor cat and would willingly go outside to do her kitty business, but rainy days and late night nature calls continued to be a problem for her.

We called her MamaKitty because she surprised us with a litter of kittens when she was little more than a kitten herself. We had found her, scrawny and flea-ridden, under a dumpster and brought her home. One vet visit and flea dip later, she was a member of the household. Being a feral kitten, she was not the friendliest cat in the world, but she did occasionally permit herself to be petted. Cats can be very aloof, but MamaKitty took it to a whole new level: I was her favourite person in the world, and she barely tolerated me! When she weaned her kittens we had her spayed, but the name MamaKitty had taken hold and so she was known for the rest of her days.

She was also aloof from the other cats…when she wasn’t being actively hostile to them. I got a little blue point Himalayan kitten, a male, and MamaKitty was so affronted by his presence that she took to stalking him like prey! It was so bad that we had to lock him in my bedroom while we were at work to prevent any mayhem. The cat ended up being called KittyMouse (although his registered name was Maserati) because MamaKitty treated him like a mouse, continually stalking and pouncing on him!

We had a large two story house, a split level type, with one bathroom on each level. The women in the house were outnumbered by the males, and getting those guys to put the lid down after a visit to the loo was a never-ending source of frustration. At one point I had to start reminding them to flush when they were done: finding the lid up is one thing…finding it up and unflushed is just gross. Naturally, nobody owned up to the transgression, so all three of them had to endure the brunt of my displeasure.

As I said, it was a big house…five bedrooms, to be exact. Downstairs there was a laundry next to a small bedroom that contained the hot water heater and furnace in a cupboard near the door. I had furnished this room as a home office, often spending time there late at night when the rest of the house had finally calmed down and gone quiet. Ordinarily all the lights were off in the house except for the one in the office, and with the exception of “house noises,” it was deadly quiet. One night I was typing along, my mind occupied with the story I was spinning, when I distinctly heard trickling noises nearby. I stopped typing and listened intently…yes, there really was a trickling noise.

Slowly, I turned my head trying to get a bead on the sound. Was it the hot water heater in the cupboard? Had someone turned on the hose outside and I was hearing water in the flowerbed under the window? Slowly I rotated the desk chair, concentrating on what I was hearing, until the sound was at its loudest. I looked around and something outside the office door caught my eye.

Across the hall from this room was the downstairs bathroom. It was dark in both the hallway and the bathroom, but I could clearly see two small red orbs hovering about two feet above the floor. My stomach suddenly turned to liquid and gooseflesh broke out all over me. My god, what was that?

The hairs lifted on the back of my neck as the red orbs wavered slightly from one side to the other, blinked out momentarily, and then reappeared. I flicked my eyes right and left, but I had no escape route: this room was at the end of the hallway and to get out, I would have to get within a yard of whatever it was that was hovering in my bathroom. Just as it occurred to me to pick up the phone and call someone…I had no idea who…to come rescue me, the orbs dropped audibly to just a few inches above the floor and started moving towards me. As they entered the light spilling out the office door and into the hall, I was able to see that my mysterious visitor was none other than MamaKitty! The red orbs were merely her retinas reflecting the light from my office!

But what about that trickling sound?

I went into the bathroom and flipped on the light and there was my answer. That cat had somehow associated the toilet with certain body functions and there, floating in the water, was proof. The trickling sound I had heard was MamaKitty taking a wee in the toilet! It should have occurred to me that there was no toilet paper in toilet with the mysterious deposits…but then who expects the non-flushing culprit to be a cat?

The next day I apologized to the kids, explaining it was the cat’s fault, not theirs, Without exception, they looked at me as if I had completely lost my mind. One of them asked me, only half-facetiously, if I had be smoking “those funny cigarettes.” I tried to explain it to them, but everyone just dismissed it, including my (then) husband who was sure I was a few bricks shy of a load anyway.

So it became my and MamaKitty’s secret. If I found the lid down, I’d put it up for her and if I found kitty exhaust deposits in the loo, I’d flush them down. It was just the two of us, knowing what the clever little cat had taught herself.

Then one Sunday morning, my husband staggered his bleary-eyed naked self into the bathroom, only to return seconds later, wide-eyed and rigid with disbelief.

“Holy sh!t!” he exclaimed. “You’ll never believe what I saw!”

I looked up from my romance novel and quirked my eyebrows questioningly. MamaKitty was a creature of habit…I already knew…

“The cat! The cat is sitting on the toilet!”

I nodded and went back to my book.

“No,” he said urgently. “The cat is on the toilet!

“Yes,” I told him. “She prefers this one. If you don’t want to wait, you’ll have to go downstairs…”


  1. That is a really awesome story! All my cat does is leave half eaten lizards in my bathroom :-(

  2. ROFLMAO, that is one smart kitty and a great story.


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