Whenever I post a picture of one of my cats I often see comments saying “OMG they are so beautiful, I want one!” Whilst I am head over heels in love with my cats I always feel the need to point out that owning a pet can be a lot of hard work! Yes, 90% of the time they are cute and adorable… but that other 10% of the time mine are as nutty as a fruitcake, prone to fits of diva level proportions, expensive and on occasion complete and utter bastards.
So let me introduce you to the REAL Mr Darcy and Sookie and what it takes to
be owned by them own them.
(By the way apologies for the copious amount of cat pictures that will follow… I love taking pictures of the little beasties!)
Mr Darcy is led by his stomach and will be at my feet within 10 seconds giving me his best ‘puss in boots’ eyes if he thinks he can get some food out of it. Because of that he’s easy to train and I’ve taught him to sit to command and come running if I tap his food bowl, so he’s always easy to find.
Unfortunately, he suffers from a cat form of IBS which means that we have to buy him the most expensive cat food to keep his tummy happy, and sometimes we are subjected to hearing him make some truly appalling noises in the litter tray (which he likes to time for when we’re sitting down to eat).
Sookie on the other hand is a fussy eater and acts like a diva. Sometimes she likes chicken, sometimes she likes turkey, but not any of that cheap cat food nonsense – she’ll have prime cuts or none at all. As soon as we get over confident that she actually really likes something and buy a multipack she decides that she doesn’t like that particular flavour anymore.
Cats sleep a lot, in fact they are on average asleep for up to two thirds of their life. This is adorable to watch, especially when they start having dreams and their little whiskers and paws start twitching like they’re playing a piano concerto.
Mr Darcy’s favourite sleeping position is ‘The Bear Rug’…
…Sookie just likes a sunny spot…
… or a flowerpot!
Both of them like sleeping at the end of the bed (which means I constantly have to hoover it) and Mr Darcy will occasionally wake me up trying to burrow under the bed covers if it’s a particularly old night. He’s the size of a bear so he’s not very subtle about it.
Neither of them appreciate the fact that humans have a different sleeping pattern. Sookie gets particularly bored at around 3 am and lets me know this by jumping onto the bed and lightly tapping my face whilst meowing. Mr D then joins in. I have now perfected the art of sleepwalking to the bathroom to put on the bath tap and a bowl of fresh water in the shower.
To give them credit though, whenever I’ve been ill though they seem to understand and will quietly curl up beside me offering comforting purrs.
Speaking of the bathroom, my cats are extremely shy and will hide from visitors unless anyone wants to go to the toilet. At this point my cats will decide that they really need to be there and oversee proceedings and will meow insistently at the door.
Indoor cats need lots of playtime to keep them fit and healthy. Ours soon got bored of all the toys we bought them and tend to keep themselves entertained by chasing each other up and down the stairs at a thundering speed.
Sookie sometimes has a ‘mad five minutes’ on her own where she makes little yappy noises and runs full pelt from room to room, skidding to a halt before yapping and running off again. She has a cat tunnel that she pounces through but sometimes mid sprint she’ll stick her head out of the hole in the middle and demand a tummy rub!
Her other favourite thing to do is chew any piece of plastic she can find. Carrier bags, cellophane wrap, ribbon on presents – nothing is safe. She doesn’t swallow any of it luckily, just leaves tiny holes for me to find.
So there you have it. The truth about cats (mine at least). They may be full of mischief and eccentricities but Mr Darcy and Sookie truly are my little furbabies and woe betide anyone who tries to tell me that they are ‘just cats’! For this reason I fully support the RSPCA’s latest campaign Pet Peeves, which aims to remind us all that our pets are family and need to be protected as such.
To me the expense of cat insurance is something that you have to factor in and accept as part of the ongoing cost of owning a cat before you agree to adopt one. Yes, it can feel like a waste of money if nothing goes wrong, but I’d rather have it there and (hopefully) never need to use it than to have something happen and struggle to foot the bill.
Do you own an eccentric pet? Let me know in the comments, I’d love to hear about their antics! You can also use the hashtag #RSPCAPetPeeves to share your own stories on Twitter.
Disclaimer: This isn’t a sponsored post and I’m in no way affiliated with the RSPCA but I agreed to write this because a) I love my cats and b) I’m very passionate about protecting our pets and making sure that we limit the numbers needing rehoming each and every day. They are, however, looking forward to receiving a hamper of cat goodies from the RSPCA store in thanks for being the
divas stars of this post!