Tuesday, June 8, 2010
Interlopers & Trespassers
(He thinks he is the king.)
By late summer, Dodo (aka Twit Bird) had settled into the house and was starting to feel comfortable and at ease with my parents and the home. Dodo often slept with my mom and at other times with my dad. We found out early that Dodo could be a pushy and bossy cat. He would turn his nose up at some foods but loved others. He loved Fancy Feast, but not all flavors. He hates the beef flavor, which makes him sick, but loves the seafood varieties. He will not eat the dry food alone nor will he eat the canned food alone. The canned food cannot be plopped down on the plate either. The canned food must be mashed nicely with a fork followed by a topping of dry food. Dodo will eat the Friskies Seafood Sensation brand but loves the Party Mix. Furthermore, Dodo will not eat food that has been sitting on his plate for a while. He will cry and cry until ‘fresh’ food is placed for him or else he won’t eat and will keep meowing. Sometimes I can trick him into thinking he has fresh food by picking up the plate and either stirring around the old food or scattering some new dry food on top and then placing it on the ground. Many times it works but there are days when he won’t fall for that trick.
Did I mention he could be pushy? In the mornings around 6 Dodo wants to eat and to go outside and he doesn’t want to wait. There are a couple of tricks up his sleeve that he will use to get my mom’s attention. At times he will cry and cry. Other times he will jump up on the bed, go to the blanket which my mom often has pulled over her head and he will dig himself under the blanket to my mom’s face and stare at her until she awakes. The least subtle method he uses is biting my mom on the arm.
I guess Dodo needed to be assertive. Although he was safe at our house, that does not mean he was without any threats. There were enemies all around waiting to take away from Dodo what is now his that he suffered through and worked for. In the time my mom lived at this house, very few cats came around, but once Dodo came on the scene, cats started coming out of the woodworks. I must have seen over a half dozen cats sneaking around our house. None of them were friendly and as far as Dodo was concerned, they were unwelcomed. Dodo worked hard to establish himself in this house and he wasn’t going to let any interloper move in on this good thing. I never saw him fight a cat, but I did see him give chase to a trespasser. How did these cats know about Dodo living here? It was as if the neighborhood cats had a networking system to keep up with their neighbors. One other thing I noticed was that once Dodo’s scratches healed up they never came back. I don’t know if he became a better fighter because he was so well fed or if his confidence bolstered him, but his face was in good shape and has stayed that way ever since.
Dodo is a skittish cat. If he hears a door bell ring, he will scat to the back of the house and hide under the bed. Even if he hears a door bell on TV, he jumps to attention and looks towards the doors. Dodo didn’t accept me as readily as he did my parents. It could be that I was not living in this house which had something to do with how he felt about me, and he probably viewed me as a stranger. He does not like strangers. Also, we couldn’t have an animal unless it had some quirks and eccentricities. Dodo has his share of quirks. For example, he is scared of shoes, especially when someone is in them. He will stare at someone’s shod feet in a fixated state. However, when someone is barefooted, he will glance at the person and keep sleeping. Who knows what happened in Dodo’s previous life. I’m sure there is a story there somewhere but I’ll never know it.