March 30, 2011

A Paw Problem

Every morning before I go to class I quickly sweep the floor of our living room because, inevitably during the night, Kitten has made a mess of his litter. You may remember from my Potty Training post that litter woes was one of the main reasons that Boyfriend and I had hoped to potty train Kitten (and as you will also know if you have read the post, we failed horribly). You may also remember from Custody of Kitten, that I have the responsibility of maintaining the litter; this includes spillage.  

March 24, 2011

Sleeping Beauty

In the post Kitten's Cat Naps, I shared a few of Kitten's favourite napping places with you. As you may have noticed (especially in #10), no matter where Kitten is sleeping, he is generally in some bizarre contorted position. Ever since Kitten was a little kitten, he has loved to sleep in what appear to be some of the most uncomfortable positions imaginable.

Starting from Kittenhood and progressing to Kitten at present, here are a few of the more memorable:

Above, we have a very crusty Kitten sleeping in the crevice of the couch.

To the right, a weird stretch-leg pillow thing seems to be happening.

To the right, we have another classic shot of Kitten in the prime of his adolescence. As you can see, he hasn't quite grown into his tail yet. Now this position seems to be some combination of retracted arms and a twisted lower torso with pointed toes.

Below, Kitten is starting to assume his current favourtite position, though as you will see, this one is more board like. He also seems to favour retracted arms and legs, but his tail is now straight.

You will notice from these picture that in his earlier days, Kitten preferred to sleep on soft things. This too has changed.

On the left, we have a slightly different variation: the jamming the body into a place it doesn't fit. And on the right, the beginning of the modern Kitten pose.

These two below are the most recent. They show kitten in his current favoured position. It seems to combine elements from numerous pervious positions. He has maintained the belly up position, as well as the retracted arms. However, he has moved away from the briefly favoured retracted legs and is once again favouring the spread leg position. He also seems to have moved away from the extreme rigidness of some of the previous positions and has resumed the slightly twisted torso, except he is now twisting his upper half.


March 23, 2011

Thing One and Thing Two

Boyfriend and Kitten have a lot of things in common: both love pizza (example 1; example 2), both just lie around the apartment, both love cheese, both make noises while breathing, both have rage issues (example), both grind their teeth, both have bad posture, both love Jersey Shore (see right), both like to take up unnecessary amounts of space on the bed, both have poor personal hygiene (example) and both expect me to feed them.

One other (maybe least expected) thing they have in common is allergies. Both Boyfriend and Kitten are constantly sneezing and dripping everywhere and neither of them seem to show much respect for where they do it.

Kitten likes to sneeze right on my laptop screen or directly on my face while I am sleeping and boyfriend likes to sneeze on me whenever he gets the chance. The most amazing thing about their shared allergies though, is that when they sneeze, it smells like beeswax after. Seriously, both Kitten and Boyfriend have beeswax smelling sneezes. 

Anyway, below is a cute video of Kitten sneezing. I am sure you could care less to see a video of boyfriend sneezing.

March 21, 2011

The Rage Within: Part I

I know I have mentioned that Kitten is quite agressive, yet it seems that my posts have generally focused on his clumsiness and peculiarities. To fully capture the true essence of Kitten, I need to demonstrate how brutally agressive Kitten can be. 

Unfortunately, we haven't capture Kitten at his worst on camera. When Kitten goes into a fit of rage, Boyfriend and I are usually too busy fighting over the best hiding spot. To help you visualize a rage infected Kitten, think "28 Days Later."

Rage can be induced by an unwanted brushing or nail clipping or simply a wrong look. Sometimes you don't even know he has been infect and you will be brushing you teeth and the next thing you know your ankles are being bit. I promise I will try to capture a video of Kitten while he is one of these states, but in the mean time, please enjoy this pictures of Kitten trying to bite my arm:

Part II coming soon.

March 18, 2011

RIP Cheap Entrainment Unit Door

When I got home from class today, I found this:
You might not know, but Boyfriend has some rage issues. I have come home on previous occasions and found a smashed printer or a hole in the back our our coat-closet door. However, I didn't want to jump to conclusions, so I asked Boyfriend what happened. He look at me and then look at Kitten and said: "Well one of us ran into it today." Running into an open cabinet door is definitely something Boyfriend would do, but considering the look he gave Kitten before answering, I knew who the culprit was. 

Apparently, Kitten was in one of his crack induced running states and ran into the door, knocking it right off. Boyfriend was in the other room and only heard it happen. He said he figured what it was by the sound and by the time he came out to see, Kitten was just sitting there licking himself like nothing had happened. 

Personally, I think Boyfriend could have taken a bit more care in closing the doors since Kitten is prone to crazy running sprees. However, I am sure neither of us would have thought Kitten's face could cause this much damage. As you can see from the photo, the wood splintered and broke right apart. I am pretty sure this can't be fixed since the door is very heavy and glue is unlikely to hold the entire weight. 

I think I might just take the other door off as well and get some nice material to make a curtain instead. Anyway, I am sure you don't want to hear about my interior decorating plans; so back to Kitten!

At first Kitten seemed a bit interested in the damage he had caused...

... but he soon grew bored and moved on. He really has no disregard for others at all.

Don't worry though, I will keep a close eye on Kitten to make sure he doesn't sleep for too long or start vomiting or something.

March 16, 2011

Potty Training

Here's a story from the archives:

Before we picked Kitten up, Boyfriend and I  decided that we were going to potty train him. By "potty train" I mean toilet train. We didn't like the idea of cleaning litter all of the time and also thought it would be a pretty cool party trick to have a cat that could use the toilet.

We had researched it a fair bit online and came across this site. I highly suggest you take a look; not only will it help you picture a few things I am about to explain, but it also has an awesome video you can watch. The basic concept is that you slowly aclimate the kitten or cat to toilet use. You start with the litter-box beside the toilet and day by day raise it up to toilet level. Then you have litter resting in the toilet, and finally you only put litter in rings along the inside (this will really make much more sense if you just go to the link).

Anyway, Boyfriend and I didn't want to spend our money on stupid plastic rings when we could clearly construct something equivalent ourselves. We set out to become master cat trainers. 

From day one we had the little-box in the bathroom.

This is Kitten, who had fallen asleep trying to climb out of his litter box. As you will recall from an earlier post, Kitten apparently had some narcolepsy issues in his kittenhood. 

Clearly, we could not have the box any higher than floor level at this point. But as you can see, the litter box is right beside the toilet. 

As Kitten grew, Boyfriend and I put textbooks under the box to raise it to toilet level.

The photo below isn't related to Kitten's toilet training saga in any meaningful way, but it is pretty awesome:
Once we had the box at toilet level I constructed a DYI version of the plastic rings. I started out with a shallow tray resting across the opening of the toilet. After about a week of that, I created a small hole in the centre. Each week, I would make the hole a bit bigger. It seemed to be working fairly well; Kitten would sit on the edge of the toilet like we hoped, however, he was really fixated on aiming for the litter. He was not okay with his business falling into the toilet. He also would paw in the air around the toilet like he was trying to bury it. Our toilet seat got quite scratched up during this experiment.

Like I said, things were going pretty well. It was frustrating having to move the litter-ring every time we wanted to use the bathroom, and it definitely made our house guests feel uncomfortable, but we felt it was worth it for the end result.

The ring got thinner and thinner and as it became thinner, it also became less sturdy. Kitten, who had not yet mastered balancing on the toilet seat, would put his entire weight on it and would end up falling into the toilet along with the ring.

What we thought would be a fun experiment was starting to become quite a burden. The rings were becoming more difficult for me to make and Kitten was falling in on a regular basis. Every time he fell in, the litter would fall in too and we would have to deal with that as well (we had flushable litter, but it was still a pain).

The straw that broke the camels back: One day, little gifts started showing up in our sink and bathtub. 
This was upsetting for Boyfriend and me on so many levels. 

I guess Kitten had also met his breaking point with the toilet rings. We didn't know that Kitten had coordination problems at this time, but in retrospect he probably physically cannot balance on a toilet seat. Regardless of his reasoning, Kitten was done with the toilet. He does deserve some credit though, as he mainly kept his gifts to things that appeared porcelain. 

Boyfriend and I gave up and in case you are wondering, Kitten is now very well trained to use a conventional litter-box. 

March 14, 2011

Kitten: Destroyer of Life

Boyfriend and I are pretty bad a keeping plants alive. One time, we even killed a cactus. However, right before we got Kitten, we decided that we were going to make a real effort to keep some plants around the apartment. We went out and bought quite a few plants of varying sizes and put them around the apartment. We made sure they had sunlight and watered them according to their instructions. We even bought those glass watering bulbs, As-Seen-On-TV. So basically, things were going pretty well.

Then we got Kitten. As soon as he was large enough to jump, Kitten began to systematically destroy our plants.

He has three main methods of destruction:
     1. Eat the plant
     2. Scratch and rip off the leaves
     3. Smother the plant

[Note: The following pictures are from Kitten's youth. He was going through puberty and looked a bit weird.]

Here, we have an example of smothering the plant. At one point, this was a very nice decorative chilli plant; it had lots of little chilli peppers on it and was quite cute. Kitten essentially created a nest in the plant pot. By the time Kitten was done with this plant, it was just a bunch of brown twigs. 

On the floor beside the chilli plant is a plant that Kitten destroyed by eating the leaves. Unfortunately, I never got a picture of him eating it. Probably because Boyfriend and I were worried that the plant was poisonous and were focused on getting Kitten to stop eating it, not on taking a picture.

This here, is the chilli plant near the end of its life. As you can see, there is nothing sticking out from the top except some dead twigs.

In this picture, Kitten is about to move onto his next victim - Hibiscus.  

At one point we even had Hibiscus flowering. It had beautiful red flowers. But leaf by leaf, Kitten ate it until it didn't have enough energy left to repair itself.

You can also see from this picture that Kitten knows he isn't suposed to be in the plant pot, but of course it was a game to him. A game that he always won.

In these last pictures we have some type of tropical tree thing. Kitten liked to use this one as a scratching post. He would also scratch at the leaves and try to pull them off. Sometimes, he would even try to eat the leaves. We were always most worried about Kitten when he would attack this plant because the leaves had very sharp tips. Boyfriend and I were pretty convinced Kitten was going to poke his eye out. Luckily, he never did. Though he did succeed in destroying this plant as well.
These plants represent only a small portion of the plants that Kitten has destroyed. We stopped taking pictures because his once adorably destructive ways became just plain annoying. Boyfriend and I are down to two plants now: one we keep behind the TV so Kitten can't get to it, the other is an old bamboo plant that we keep in the kitchen. Kitten sometimes will show interest in the bambo, but generally he leaves it alone.[Until recently we actually had two bambo plants. The other one was on our windowsill, but Kitten learned to jump up there too and knocked it off the ledge breaking the holder and spilling rocks every where.]
    Basically, Kitten hates all things living.

March 12, 2011

Re: Custody of Kitten

The polls have closed and the verdict is in...

In the event that Boyfriend and I were to break-up, I should get custody of Kitten. It's not like I would give Boyfriend a choice in the matter anyway; but it is nice to know that I would have some support. 

I would just like to say that for those of you who said Kitten would fare better in the streets of Toronto, I am ashamed at you. If you had read this post, you would know that Kitten is completely incapable of caring for himself. I am assuming that you voted this way because you would hope the be able to swoop in and claim Kitten for yourself.

I am also assuming that for those five of you that voted for Boyfriend, you only voted that way because you felt sorry for the poor schlub. I understand your feelings of sympathy, but do you really think that was the right choice? You voted to put the life of a little furry, helpless being into the hands of this:

March 11, 2011

Lord Kitten of the Flies

Before I start today's Kitten post, I wanted to remind everyone that if you would like to vote for who would be a better solo-Kitten-owner (obviously me), that you have until approximately 2:00am to do so. Let me say that Boyfriend was quite shocked that he had received 5 votes. I can only assume that these  were all pity votes. 

And now for the post... Enjoy!

Sometimes, Boyfriend and I wil be watching TV or studying and we will see Kitten sitting on the chair or filing cabinet staring at the wall or ceiling with unwavering interest. At first we assumed he had completely lost it. Then we realized that Kitten had spotted a bug. It turns out that Kitten has a knack for spotting bugs. Once spotted, he will sit and stare at it for incredible periods of time. I am often surprised at the attention span that Kitten has for bug watching. 

Kitten's interest in bugs resembles his interest in pigeon's (see The Day the Pigeon Came), except he doesn't make the weird grottal noises during bug watching. 

Most of the time, the bug is a ladybug or something similar. In the picture below, I am pretty sure it was a ladybug. If you follow Kitten's gaze, you can see it at the top of the photo. 

Now, about a year and a half ago, Boyfriend and I had a wee bit of a cockroach infestation in our apartment. However, as soon as I mentioned it to the landlord, they did something that fixed the problem almost instantly and I haven't seen any since. 

Kitten, did not share in my ecstasy when they disappeared so quickly. He had made friends with them and/or wanted to eat them. The cockroaches would generally only come out at night and they seemed to be getting in from the holes by the piping under our sink. Each night, Kitten would wait by the sink for them to emerge. He would sit patiently, and when one came out, he would catch it. 

You would think that it would be a good thing to have a "Roach Hunter" hanging around your apartment. Unfortunately, catching one in his paws was only phase one of Kitten's plan; phase two involved lifting his paws to look at it, at which point his prey/friend (which was clearly on a higher intellectual level than Kitten) would escape. 

While Kitten no longer has his 'roach buddies to keep him company, he does still manage to find bugs to watch. Below is a video of Kitten looking out the window very intently at something, which I can only assume was a bug. There was no pigeon on the balcony and he was looking straight up at the bottom of the balcony above us. Maybe this time he really had just gone crazy. You can watch the video and be the judge. 

March 9, 2011

Glamour Shots

Often, the pictures of Kitten that I post to this blog are quite unflattering. Many of the pictures I post are pictures of Kitten at his worst. I feel as though I have done Kitten a grave injustice. While it is true that Kitten often has hair stuck in his mouth, a toilet-water Samurai mustache and a ridiculous expression on his face, sometimes he doesn't. 

Today's blog post is a selection of what I like to call, "Kitten's Glamour Shots." Sometimes, Kitten likes to pose for his pictures in ways that are almost as ridiculous as when is he just being plain old Kitten.


"Sober Reflection" 

"The Marlon Brando"
"The Sideways No-Face"
"Blue Steel"

"Watchful Contemplation" 

March 6, 2011

Custody of Kitten

The other day, after a heated debate in Property class about the discrepancies of property rights between married and common law couples, Mike asked me who would get Kitten if Boyfriend and I ever broke-up. 

This is an excellent question and one that Boyfriend and I have discussed many times. Not because we plan on breaking-up, but because Kitten is our most valued possession and it is important to have these things sorted out. 

As I mentioned in my very first blog post, In The Beginning..., Kitten was a Christmas present from Boyfriend to me. I am pretty sure that this solves any actual debate about who would get to keep Kitten. However, this was not the end to our discussion. 

First we argued about who Kitten likes more. I said Kitten likes me more because I am nicer to him; I chase him less and he seems much less anxious around me. Boyfriend said Kitten likes him more because Boyfriend has cheese parties with Kitten and Kitten likes to cuddle with Boyfriend in the mornings. I countered this by pointing out that I too could have cheese parties with Kitten, I just don't eat as much cheese, and that the only reason Kitten cuddles with Boyfriend in the mornings is because Boyfriend is lazy and stays in bed while I get up to do things. We decided that since Kitten has yet to learn English, it would be impossible to figure out who he likes more.

We moved on to trying to figure out who would take better care of Kitten. Boyfriend said he would because he is the one who brushes him. I agreed that this is true, however, a few months ago Boyfriend lapsed in his brushing duties and Kitten became a matted beast. We had to cut all of his mats out and now he looks like he has mange and/or scurvy. I then said that I would take better care of Kitten because Boyfriend has never changed his litter once and I am also the one who feeds Kitten and cleans and fills his water bowl. Boyfriend countered this by saying that he would feed him if I didn't (a lie because once I was away visting family for three days and Kitten had no food when I came back), he doesn't need clean water in his bowl because he likes toilet-water better (true), and I was right, the litter wouldn't get changed. We both agreed that it takes two people to bathe Kitten and to cut his nails.   

Finally we argued about who needs Kitten the most. I said that I did because I loved him more and he was my gift. Boyfriend countered this by saying that he loved him more and that Kitten was his only friend (true) and he would't have anyone but Kitten if we broke-up (true). 

Our Kitten tug-of-war debate has never been resolved... 

So who do you think should get Kitten if Boyfriend and I ever break up? You can vote on the left side of the page.

March 2, 2011

I Spy...

I spy with my little eye: 3 Kitty pillows*, an unpaid bill, Boyfriends night mouth guard*, and some Rules, Civil.   

*First, I need to say that you will probably see these kitty pillows in a lot of my pictures. Boyfriend and I bought them from the dollar store because we thought they were funny. Like many things we have placed in our apartment initially as a joke, the kitty pillows have become a permanent fixture (not in the property law sense though...). Second, Boyfriend grinds his teeth. He can't help this, though I imagine he could help where he leaves his gross mouth guard. Oh and if you needed help finding the mouth guard: Kitten is staring right at it. I think it upsets him too.