The cats and I were being entertained by the squirrels at the apple feeder today.
One, in particular, is a nut. He swings upside-down from it and sometimes with just one leg.
I know he's trying to figure out how to get the whole darn apple 'cause that's what they do. He has already taken off with some of the bird feeders. Oh well, he's hungry too and keeps the cats from going bonkers this winter. I put out a tray of nuts for the squirrels this morning so perhaps the birds will get a chance to have a bit of fruit.
Where did this week go?
It is still so cold. The wind has really picked up now although the temperature is rising. We are in for some milder weather next week.
I'm off to kitty-sit 4 cats today but first I will leave you with this 'Cat tip of the day' =^..^=
Cat-tip-of-the-day - handling inappropriate behavior
When it comes to cats, elimination, scratching, jumping and aggression are normal behaviours. With that in mind, it is inappropriate to punish a cat for engaging in them. Punishing your cat may reinforce this unwanted behaviour because you are paying a lot of attention to the bad behaviour and your cat may think, "I want attention; if I eliminate over here, I'll get it." Also you can break the bond with a cat that you are screaming at all the time. I have found that the most often asked questions from my cat-sitting clients deals with inappropriate litter box behaviour.
First and foremost, have your cat checked over by your veterinarion to see if it is a medical condition. It could be a bladder infection that is causing the cat to eliminate outside the box, for instance. After that, if your healthy cat continues to behave inappropriately, behaviour modification is to retrain the way your cat thinks. First, be sure that the litter box is clean. Is the location right? It has to be in a place that is quiet, easy to get to and not next to something that can suddenly make a lot of noise, like a washing machine. It should not be wedged into a corner where it is hard for the cat to get into or if your cat is on the large size, do not use a covered box that the cat feels uncomfortable trying to get into and out of. Also, if you have multiple cats and there is one that is dominant, your shy one may not want to feel trapped in a covered litter box in case the dominant one becomes aggressive. If you have recently changed your litter to one that has a lot of chemicals in it to keep down the smell, some cats cannot stand the smell of it. I have to agree with them on this one. Even as an owner, I have found some litters to be very offensive with too much added chemicals and fragrances. I buy plain litter and add baking soda and it works great.
I can't stress enough how screaming and hitting a cat that pee's on the floor or the carpet will cause adverse results. Your cat will become afraid of you and very stressed around you and the problem will get worse. After cleaning the spots thoroughly where your cat inappropriately eliminated, I suggest you try the following:
Limit the cat to one room. (I suggest a spare bedroom and not a bathroom as it is too small and not comfortable for the cat) Place it's food and water on one side, clean litter box on the other and lots of toys and blankets and window perches and so on to make the cat feel very comfy. Making the cat's world smaller will possibly take it's mind off the inappropriate behaviour and start fresh. You will have to put time aside to spend with the cat by adding a chair for reading or TV to the room so the cat still has time with you but the cat is not to roam the house for 3 days. Adding a radio to the room on a station that plays soft music will keep the cat calmer. After 3 days of using its' litter box properly, let the cat roam the house while you are home but when you are away the cat returns to its room. If the cat eliminates inappropriately in the house after 3 days, start again. Once you are sure that the cat is using the box again return things to normal. I have seen this work and I suggest trying it. It has saved many cats from being 'given up' to shelters. One of my clients used this method and every time I see her now she thanks me and says I saved her cats' life.
Your cat depends on you to help it through this confusing time in its' life.