By Elisa Black-Taylor
Does your cat ever look up at you with disappointment in his eyes? Do you ever do things that displeases your cat or not do things that would please your cat? Over the past few years, my daughter Laura and I have experienced a few disappointed expressions.
Do You Expect Me To Eat This?
Food can be a cat’s biggest disappointment. The most recent experience is with our only feline distemper survivor, Midnight Munchkin Whineybutt.
Midnight is on wet food, primarily for the nourishment, but also because she has yet to taste a dry kibble she likes. So Midnight enjoys the same wet food as Sealy. Sealy eats Whiskas Purrfectly Fish or Purrfectly Chicken. It’s the only food that his delicate system can handle. Please don’t chastise us about the quality. We’ve tried food that cost 4x the cost of the Whiskas, and he either has diarrhea or throws it up. His vet just says he has a delicate system because of his stomatitis.
This food comes in several flavors. From tuna to shrimp to duck. Sealy will eat anything, but Midnight is more particular in her tastes. Laura fed Midnight a flavor several days ago and got the “you’ve got to be kidding, you don’t expect me to eat this crap” expression. She practically turned her nose up at the food and refused to eat.
This is food she’s been fed for a year now. We try to rotate the flavors so the cats don’t get bored with the variety. I sometimes wonder whether cats have any pre-meal concepts concerning the flavor they’ll receive. Do they think “oh, I hope I get the chicken today, because I HATE the duck flavor.” It’s distressing to get “the look” when we try so hard to please them.
Why Did You Let My Vet Hurt Me?
Furby also looked at me with disappointment several months ago when I refused permission for him to rummage in the fridge. Not only does Furby think it’s his right as head cat to look into the refrigerator, he wants to crawl inside and check out the menu up close and personal. I don’t think he realized the light doesn’t stay on when the door is closed.
Furby also gave me a very disappointed expression on his last vet visit when he was diagnosed with a upper respiratory infection. He loves to ride, and he enjoyed the attention paid him by the vet and their assistants. Until….he was “violated” by staff who found it necessary to perform a worm check and to check him for a fever. After the thermometer was removed and the assistant had left the room, I remember Furby sitting on the exam table with the most shocked expression on his face. I could read his thoughts as clearly as if he had spoken to me…
“Mama! Why did you let them do THAT to me? Don’t you love me? I’m scared….why didn’t you protect me?”
..If he hadn’t been shaking from head to toe, I’d have laughed at him.
Why Can’t I Go Outside?
I imagine a lot of you with indoor/outdoor cats have to tolerate a lot of cat disappointment. Either with your cat wanting to go out or wanting to stay outside longer. All of our cats are indoor only, with the exception of our Houdini cat Gizzy. She hasn’t escaped in a very long time, but she still eyes the door with longing. Since the weather has warmed up, Laura is planning to take her on leash walks so she can spend some time outdoors. One of our neighbors has bragged about trapping and killing a cat, so going out alone isn’t an option anymore. The neighbor next to us doesn’t even allow her dogs outside anymore where they can run and play. They have a fenced in back yard, so that has to work for them from now on. We have a fenced back yard, and I hope to modify it so some of the cats can go outside without escaping over the fence.
Do You Disappoint Your Cat?
What does it take for your cat to give you that disappointed expression? Food, outdoor time, ramming a pill down the throat when sick? Unlike our cats, we mere humans can’t be perfect all the time.