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Thread: Fisters Journey - The noble art of scratching

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Copenhagen, Denmark
    Posts
    330

    Fisters Journey - The noble art of scratching

    Fisters’ Journey - The noble art of scratching

    Cats are such loveable cuddly creatures aren’t they! Usually mild and gentle, and as domestic pets, no great problem. But sometimes (quite often actually!), I get reminded of the fact that they are actually natural predators, and one of natures most efficient hunters and killers. If cats were the size of large dogs, I’m sure mankind would never have been able to domesticate them. We’d more likely have ended up as their evening meal.
    There are certain instinctive traits left over from their wild ancestry which can be annoying though, and with Fister the biggest problem is scratching things and “pounding” (kneading?).


    That feels soooo good!

    When he lived down in his yard, Fister had his own little special tree trunk that he would “sharpen” his claws on. It was a regular occurence, and always the very first thing that he just had to do when he returned to the yard from a visit to our flat. There are probably various reasons for this, it surely helps the growth of his claws in some way, and also defines territory for him. Up in our flat he decided that his favourite chair was the place for him to practice this black art.


    OK - it’s yours now!

    Shouting and hissing and chasing him around had no effect of course, so we accepted the fact that our old arm chair was the first victim of his presence. He still uses it, but seems to realise we don’t approve, although we’ve accepted it, so nowadays he does it sort of “carefully” and stops instantly if we complain. We have tried a couple of commercial scratching posts, but he never showed any interest in them.
    Luckily, the only other place he enjoys this natural activity is by attacking our nice thick rugs, which don’t suffer any visible damage. Every time, after sleeping or eating, it’s out into the corridor or living room for a good stretch and a jolly good scratch!


    Can’t you understand my problem?

    There was a period when we had considerable problems although this, we realised rather late, was our own fault. He was beginning to get problems with his bladder, and was having a hard time getting the message into our thick human heads. So the only solution he could find was to SCRATCH! This he began to do with great efficiency, and suddenly, within a few days, he had destroyed most of the wallpaper in our corridor. Associating this with his litter tray, we finally got the message, and started the long dramatic series of operations on his plumbing. The scratching has stopped, and his plumbing repaired, so perhaps we’d better re-paper the corridor soon!
    The other instinctive habit that he can’t forget is pounding or kneading. This apparently derives from kittenhood when nursing with his mum. I’m sure he does it to show affection, but it is really annoying sometimes. I’ve had cats before that loved sitting on my lap, and usually my knees ended up looking like an overworked pin cushion. Fister doesn’t sit on laps, but when up in our bed, he often goes all soppy on us, and pounds away at anything in sight, while going into what I call “power purring” mode. He is practically unstoppable, and I’m beginning to get a collection of lovely red scars all over my upper arms. That doesn’t cost anything, but our expensive goose down duvets are having a rough time. As most of us are now aware, Fister is endowed with a lovely set of super sharp long claws, and he has certainly never hesitated to use them.


    Here’s something to get my claws into!

    I can’t really see any solution to the problem, he gets really sad and disappointed if we try to stop him. He’s only trying to show his love and admiration for us, but $200 down comforters are a bit much to expend every couple of months. I’ve tried putting bits of tough cloth down for him, but he just moves away from them immediately. Because that’s not the point is it? He’s just trying to show how much he LOVES US isn’t he!
    There’s absolutely no chance that we will ever de-claw him. No way, ever. We’ve taken the responsibility for him, so we have to learn to live with it.

    Another interesting experience was watching his coat acclimatise to life in a warm apartment. As a kitten in his back yard, he would develop a wonderful thick winter coat to ward off the cold (… and what a great TAIL he had!). This meant of course that he had to shed it in the spring and summer. The first couple of years actually living with us were a nightmare of flying fur. Thank goodness we’re not allergic! It was hairs on and in everything, and I mean everything. Hairs in our food, hairs in our eyes, hairs up our nose, hairs in our suitcases when we arrived on holiday in some exotic clime. There was just nowhere those little hairs couldn’t get to. We always had a little reminder from Fister with us when we travelled. When he hopped down from the windowsill in the sunlight he would create a wonderful great cloud of downy particles, sort of like the pixie dust in Peter Pan. But now he’s developed an “indoor” coat, and the problem has more or less disappeared.

    I’m sure we can hear more tales of such behaviour from our “massive cat family” owners on Pet Talk!

    john

    "Peace cannot be achieved through violence,
    it can only be attained through understanding."
    Albert Einstein

  2. #2

    The Entrepreneurial Spirit

    I was going to suggest you plant a tree of the same variety in your home but then I had a thought....

    You could turn Fister into a money maker....

    Why spend money on a shreading machine???(this will be very popular with accounting firms, oil companies, etc.) Let Fister turn your documents -- and furniture -- into unrecognizable bits. You could also market this talent to wives who want an excuse to buy new furniture! And that nasty job of removing wallpaper?? DONE!

    Don't waste money on a breadmaking machine! Fister can do the kneading for you!

    Goose down? What about those cold, cold geese? Fister, once again, has the solution. Cat fur duvets!

    I think we're getting a plan going here........

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Location
    Kansas, USA
    Posts
    20,663
    Poor Fister! Now the whole world has seen a picture of him on the 'pottie'! Is there nothing private anymore?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    catlandia
    Posts
    3,098

    Re: The Entrepreneurial Spirit

    Originally posted by Edwina's Secretary
    could also market this talent to wives who want an excuse to buy new furniture!
    I won't be requiring Fister's services. Thanks to my precious trio, I have the excuse to get a new couch, a new chair, new draperies, a new shower curtain...


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Copenhagen, Denmark
    Posts
    330
    Brilliant idea Edwinas Secretary! I was wondering whether to lease him out or auction him. But then I thought - I can’t sell him, so I’ve already prepared a sign to post on the auction site:



    The leasing rates will be very high, and will have to include first class transport for him and his “minders” to the chosen location, all food, and of course accommodation (preferably 5-star hotel with access to an aviary).

    john

    "Peace cannot be achieved through violence,
    it can only be attained through understanding."
    Albert Einstein

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Munich
    Posts
    15,287
    Hehehe. If you need a team (to ruin let's say a Hollywood villa) Tigris would be glad to join you

  7. #7
    Guest

    oh my adorable Fister !! You are ALWAYS welcome to scratch on my posts !!!

    MAYA

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    Santa Clara, CA
    Posts
    27,644
    John, once again you've written a great story and provided some great pictures to illustrate your story.
    Owned by Sky, Pearl, Ziggy Stardust, Alani, Blaze, Colby, Finnegan, and Summer.


    My Rainbow Bridge Babies:
    RB Pepper 3/17/97- 2/3/03 RIP Sweet Pepper
    RB Starr 3/22/05- 7/1/09 RIP Sweet Starr
    RB Sunny 8/25/00- 2/28/10 RIP Sweet Sunny
    RB Storm 1/11/96- 8/2/12 RIP Sweet Storm

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    Kentucky, LAND OF THE EASILY AMUSED
    Posts
    24,850

    Re: The Entrepreneurial Spirit

    Originally posted by Edwina's Secretary

    Why spend money on a shreading machine???(this will be very popular with accounting firms, oil companies, etc.) Let Fister turn your documents -- and furniture -- into unrecognizable bits
    fister,
    stay in school and get a good job, DO NOT get involved with any shady companies...you may scratch their backs, but they sure won't scratch yours!!!

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