Watch Kali solve this ‘irritating’ problem

Kali and Chase both like the shelves in one of the bedrooms, but they don’t necessarily like to be up there at the same time. And when one is “trapped” by the other, they’re faced with a choice: Wait it out, or find an alternative way down. Now, Gizmo has jumped from that shelf to the bed a number of times, but Kali’s never done it before. She took her time surveying, which gave me time to pull out my phone, and then she just sucked it up and jumped. Watch below:

Chase ‘Knocks’ on a Closed Door

If Chase doesn’t spend the night with me, this is often how he’ll wake me up in the morning. This is also how he lets me know he can’t find his food, and how he says he wants in at night (or any other time). We have no idea where he learned to “knock” on the door like this, but it’s a very effective method for getting what he wants.

He will also paw at the knob on the back door if he wants to go outside. We don’t let him outside by himself; we only ever take him out on his harness, and just on our property. Chase is a demanding cat; he rules the house, however much we might think otherwise.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Accidental Training Scenario

When we hide Chase’s food, we don’t just put it on shelves and chairs, and in out-of-the-way spots on the floor. We’ll also put it inside boxes, tubs, and even old laundry baskets when they’re out. The first time we did this with an old laundry basket, Chase couldn’t figure out how to get to his food. The poor guy kept pawing and pawing, and sniffing and sniffing, and he couldn’t figure it out!

Chase: Young Kitten to Happy, Rebellious Cat

This is Chase. He and Kali came to us by way of my sister, whose neighbor had found them alone and cold at probably 2 weeks of age. Nobody has any idea what happened to their mother, but we think she might have been hit by a car and killed. They were the smallest little kittens we’d ever seen, too young to eat solid food, and still needing kitten milk for nourishment.

They had fleas, and they wouldn’t calm unless they were closed in somewhere, so we kept them in a carrier with a folded-up king-size flannel sheet, a sweatshirt, and a small heating pad beneath all of that, set on low.

 

Here is Chase in 2009. At this point, he’s about 3.5 to 4 weeks old.

 

Still 2009, and right about when his eyes started changing color. For awhile, he seriously looked like he had purple eyes.

 

He liked feet back then. He still likes feet, especially when they’re dirty.

 

This is still 2009, and he’s about 10 weeks old in this picture.

 

He loves dirty shoes, too.

 

Another photo of a 10-week old Chase.

 

TOOOOOOOOOOOOOO much catnip, too much partying.

 

This is 2010. At this point, Chase is about six months old. He’s starting to fill out, and his fur has gone from short to long. He doesn’t quite have a ruff at this age, but it was around now that we started noticing that he’s got Maine Coon in him.

 

Chase likes to sleep with his tongue out for some reason. We have several pictures of him sleeping like this.

 

Now it’s 2011, and we’d just put some new vertical space in. You can’t see it in this picture, but his favorite toy is above him, on a newly installed shelf. He doesn’t know yet where it went.

 

This picture was taken at Christmas in 2012, and we sadly had to hightail it out to my father’s house after my stepmother was in a fatal car crash. The crash happened over Thanksgiving weekend, our usual pet-sitters were out of town, I was having trouble finding a flight, so we packed up the car, including all four cats, and drove the whole way. The cats and I were there for about six weeks, and they wasted no time in making themselves at home.

 

2014 now, and of course Chase has long since become fully grown. He’s always been a very alert cat.

 

See the Maine Coon in him?

 

A happy Chase. He thinks I’m his mother.

 

The video below is just an example of how Chase is like a child, particularly caught doing something he knows he’s not supposed to be doing. We’re slowly trying to train him to stay off the table, but we have a long way to go.

Chase ‘Gnaws’ my Knuckles 2

Another look at Chase “gnawing” my knuckles. You can see his behavior here considerably better than in the last video. Like I said before, this doesn’t hurt, and he only does it when he’s hungry. The rest of the time, he engages in wool-sucking behavior, meaning he suckles and kneads on blankets that are on me. Sometimes, when he’s doing this knuckle-gnawing thing, I feel him flexing, but not always.

Here he is:

Big Cats and Boxes

We know that our cats like boxes. Boxes provide new places to explore, and they provide hidey-holes and a feeling of security to our cats. They can even simulate mama’s den for kittens without parents. The link between cats and boxes is well known, well documented, and very funny.

Then we have the big cats, and there are a lot of similarities in the behavior between big cats and our cats. Many lions, tigers, jaguars, leopards, and cougars, along with the smaller wildcats, live in zoos and sanctuaries, where people do their best to enrich the lives of these majestic creatures. In order to do that, they have to get creative, just like we do when we find our cats are bored with what they have. Do big cats like boxes, too? Watch the video below to find out:

When Cats Run Around Suddenly and Out of Nowhere

Cats can get strange when they get hopped up. Kali sometimes gets like this right after a meal, and it’s hilarious to watch her because we know she absolutely has to expend all that energy. At the same time, she has to stay in the room where she was fed, so the other cats have a chance to finish their food, too. When cats run around like this, hilarity ensues:

Cats run around to release stored up energy

What makes cats run around like this? Pets Advisor says that one possibility is, in fact, stored up energy. Cats spend a lot of their time lying around, sleeping, lounging, and otherwise not doing much. That means that they build up energy reserves that they just suddenly have to burn off, and tearing around the house is one way to do that.

Hunting behavior

Way of Cats says that sitting still one moment, and then exploding into action the next, is how cats hunt. They love to feign complete disinterest, and even a certain obliviousness. It can lull their prey into a false sense of security, because they think the cat isn’t aware of them.

According to Way of Cats, this is the opposite of dogs. They say that there’s a reason we walk dogs, and play with cats using wand toys and other things that mimic their prey. Each type of exercise is a substitute for their natural hunting behavior. Cats study and ambush their prey; they don’t follow it and surround it with hunting partners the way dogs do. This doesn’t explain why cats have to go crazy. It means that they need to run around like crazy.

Fleas or other “itchies”

Pets Advisor says that fleas is another reason cats run around like this. There’s a sharp sting that comes with a flea bite, and if your cat is getting bitten all the time, they get very annoying, and your cat might be trying to get away from them.

When cats run around like this, and it’s a new and perplexing behavior, you might want to consider making an appointment with your vet to rule out a medical cause. One rare condition, called feline hyperesthesia syndrome, can cause “crazy kitty” behavior. This condition has some other symptoms, though, including excessive licking and scratching. If your cat suddenly launches into activity after licking or scratching frantically, that’s a good sign that you ought to call your vet. It’s generally a good idea to call your vet and ask about any new behavior you observe.

In the video above, Kali’s releasing excess energy after eating. Why she gets that is beyond us, because none of our other cats get that way right after eating. Usually, though, when cats run around like she does, it’s normal feline behavior.

When Cats Roll Around on Their Backs

You’ve certainly seen this behavior from your cats at least once. Sometimes they roll on their backs because of catnip, and sometimes they do it for seemingly no reason. This is Kali on our (old) kitchen floor, and she had no catnip anywhere near:

 

So what’s up with this? Vetstreet says that one explanation is that this is a cat scratching her back. Cats might be flexible, but they can’t reach every itch with their hind feet, and this might be easier than going after it with her sandpaper tongue and needle teeth. That could be especially true if it’s one of those itches that just feels like it’s everywhere at once.

For un-spayed females, this can also be post-mating behavior. Kali, however, is spayed, and has never mated anyway, so that’s not the case here.

Some cats do this as a submissive behavior, and some cats do it when they’re inviting play. And sometimes, says Vetstreet, cats do it because it just feels good. It feels good the way we feel when we have a really good stretch.

We think Kali does this, though, because she gets “rewarded” for it. She did it, we fawned over her for it, and so she learned it was a great way to get attention; the fawning was a form of approval. So, when she wants attention and she’s not getting it, she will sometimes throw herself down on the floor.

(My apologies for the poor quality of the video. I shot this with a really old camera.)