Zoey the Cool Cat has been with us since September 20, 2007. Just a few months after her arrival, we discovered that she had no use for store-bought toys. She liked shoelaces, yarn, string, bags, boxes…. anything that wasn’t made specifically with cats in mind!
One morning I was fixing her food and my food at the same time when I opened a new gallon of milk and dropped the red ring on the floor. Zoey the Cool Cat pounced on it! So of course I played with her and the red ring for a while.
That was a mistake. Now she has a collection of about 150 red rings. I keep them in a Zoey the Cool Cat container that a blogging friend found on eBay.
Most of the red rings currently are behind the bed:
When the container is empty, I move the bed, collect all the red rings, refill the container, and we start over again, a process that takes about three months from start to finish. (This also helps me keep the area under the bed clean…. a benefit of having a cat…….. 🙂 )
This is a ritual that Zoey the Cool Cat refuses to do without. She will not even eat any food until she’s had about 15 minutes of play time with the red rings.
This past Friday morning, Zoey the Cool Cat flopped on the floor. That usually means that she wants to play red rings. For some reason, I didn’t have a red ring and went to pet her instead. She attacked me. We’re talking a serious attack. She dug all four sets of claws deep into my arms and sunk her teeth deep into my wrists and fingers. She would not let go, and it took me a minute, maybe two, to get her off of me. I was not a happy camper, and she knew it. For the rest of the day we stayed away from each other. It was mutual.
I spent all day Friday trying to figure out what I did wrong to cause her to attack me like that. I needed to determine the cause because I need my hands, arms, and fingers for home inspections and the requisite reports. I could not have this happening too often…. Actually, once was quite enough!
Finally, on Saturday morning, it occurred to me: We did not play red ring Friday morning. With that thought in mind today, I did a very careful experiment earlier this morning to see if the lack of red ring play time was the cause of her aggression. I determined that it was. Each time I went to pet her without a red ring in my hand, she attacked. Since I was prepared, she didn’t get me. It was obvious, though, that she is not a happy cat if I don’t have a red ring for her in the morning.
After about fifteen minutes of experimentation, I decided to catch her playing red ring just so you—yes, YOU!—could experience what this little cat wants to do each and every morning, first thing after I get out of bed. The video has accompanying music, my rendition of “Stray Cat Stuff,” originally composed and performed by the Stray Cats in 1982. This is about 15 minutes of red ring playtime edited down to 2:45.
Moral of this post: Hand without red ring in the morning is subject to attack!
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