Sunday, April 26, 2009

Cat prison


Rufus has a cut on his leg and it needed a staple to pull the edges together. Unfortunately, the staple didn't go in completely, leaving a loop that could catch on branches outside so he has to stay in for the next week. He doesn't like staying in and scratches at the catflap which we have had to board up with cardboard because he can work the catch. He also meows pitifully by the front door, comes and complains to us and attacks his sister.

Bonnie is also housebound because we can't let her out with no way to get back in but she makes much less fuss.

Things I have done to try to amuse Rufus:

  • Put his cat tree in the conservatory by an open window (carefully tied so that it can only open a smidgen).

  • Tie a feathered cat ball with elastic to the window so that he can bat it and it flutters in the breeze.

  • Use a special cat friendly mixture to blow bubbles for him.

  • Take him out for a walk using his old kitten harness and lead, cobbled together with string as it is now too small.

  • Make him a box fort.

  • Hide his squeaky toy under a cover for him to find

  • Play with him with his cat fishing rod toy.

  • Throw his toy mouse for him. And again. And again.

  • Make hidey places for him with towels and blankets.

  • Sprinkle catnip on his toys for him to play with.

And the result: Rufus liked the squeaky toy, the fishing rod toy, chasing the mouse and hunting the mouse for all of three minutes each. He tried to climb out the window that was open two inches and got stuck so now all our window are closed. He doesn't like going out if he has to be on a lead. (Who can blame him?) The catnip resulted in bliss lasting maybe ten minutes.

We have six more days to go of this. I'm taking it one day at a time.

27 COMMENTS:

Bevie said...

Had to give an "Oh Dear" on this one. Poor Rufus. Even a gilded cage is no fun. Credits to you for all you're doing. Even if you could make him understand it's only a for a week I doubt his mood would improve.

Poor Rufus.

fairyhedgehog said...

I know. I feel so sorry for him, in between feeling exasperated.

Whirlochre said...

It's looking like a proper ailing feline hierarchy in your conservatory.

Many years ago, when Geoff was even smaller than she is now, and had siblings, we purchased one of those magnetic cat flaps. What can I say? Useless. You're better off with cardboard. Originally, we got it so we could keep them all in on bonfire night and whenever drunks went on the rampage from the five nearby pubs. But then our neighbour introduced the Ginger Shagmonster From Hell into the equation. And it bashed the flap in.

Meanwhile — have you tried Tiddlywinks?

fairyhedgehog said...

The trouble with our catflap is that it has a little plastic catch that you push along with
your paws to open or close it. Bonnie managed to lock herself out by opening it to the wrong setting when I had it locked shut. There is no way it will keep a determined Rufus is and it was expensive too: it's one of those that works on a microchip in the cat's neck.

I'll let you know how I get on with the Tiddlywinks. Right.

Geoff said...

The introduction of small rodents would not go amiss, methinks.

writtenwyrdd said...

See, the 'easy' solution (Yes, you may laugh) is to never let the out. Then they just sleep in the window very happily. Even though my cats were never ever allowed outside, it didn't stop them from trying.

writtenwyrdd said...

Oh, and: How about a gerbil in a gerbil ball? (Just don't tell the animal cruelty people.)

Rufus said...

You tell her, Geoff. She won't listen to me.

fairyhedgehog said...

Writtenwyrdd, I think some cats are just more placid than others. If Bonnie had never been out I think she'd be happy indoors but Rufus sees us going out and wants to explore.

Bevie said...

"Oh, and: How about a gerbil in a gerbil ball? (Just don't tell the animal cruelty people.)"

Buy a tiny battery-operated car and try that in the ball. It won't get tired or hungry (until the battery wears out).

fairyhedgehog said...

Buy a tiny battery-operated car and try that in the ball. It won't get tired or hungry (until the battery wears out)

Now that's a plan!

Scott from Oregon said...

I wish we had a "conservatory"...

We have sun rooms- not nearly sophisticated enough...

Our cats have to time their escapes with people going in and out of the garage...

freddie said...

Don't worry - in time Rufus probably won't even remember his days of being strictly indoors.

fairyhedgehog said...

I'm sure you're right, freddie. I, however, will.

Lisa said...

poor baby - still the perch in the sunroom looks lovely!
What do you mean he was 'stuck' in the window? I have this vision of his head on one side, and his butt hanging out the other side - bad kitty!
Our Amelia likes to put her little nose in everything!

fairyhedgehog said...

I couldn't see what was going on properly as it was my son who climbed up and held him while I sorted out the window. I think he had his head and one shoulder out and the rest of him in. Definitely a bad kitty!

Do you have pictures of Amelia?

Robin S. said...

Poor kitties! Well, Rufus mainly.

Madison the Cat would be hell on furry wheels if she had to stay inside. On rainy days when she's stuck, she's quite the bitch, frankly.

Hope these next days pass quickly for you, FH.

fairyhedgehog said...

Thanks, Robin. Rufus seems to have settled down a bit. He's rediscovering how to play with his toys instead of ruling the world.

Sarah Laurenson said...

Little kitty valium. Works wonders. (Actually made my cat too unsteady on her feet.)

When I transitioned mine from in/out cats to indoor only, there was a rough period, but it settled down. They were older, so that helped.

One day at a time is about the best way to do it. One minute at a time is often helpful.

fairyhedgehog said...

One minute at a time is often helpful. Oh yes.

JaneyV said...

Poor kitties. I can only imagine the hell we'd have if I had to keep the Pooch indoors. Of course you do have to let her out to do her "business" - they don't make litter trays made out of grass. What can I say ? She's fussy about where does her whoopsies.

I hope the car in the hamster ball works. If not, try ear plugs.

fairyhedgehog said...

The trouble with cats is, they get out of the garden so once they're out, they're gone.

Only three days, five hours and eighteen minutes to go.

Wayne said...

Got to love the kitties. Poor thing, hope she gets better quick!

One thing I found to be a great toy is a stick, maybe about 3-4 ft long, with a 6ft length of string on the end.

You can whip it like your fly-fishing as well as aim it at your spouse. Great fun for both cat and family.

My cats get all squirley when I bring it out.

fairyhedgehog said...

as well as aim it at your spouse.Sounds like a great idea!

Robin S. said...

How are the kitties? They're able to go outside now, right?

More important, how are you??

fairyhedgehog said...

Rufus was given the all clear by the vet on Friday so they are both coming and going as they please and the house is much calmer now.

I'm OKish. I'm still fine tuning my meds so I'm expecting things to be a bit iffy for a week or two but I'm hopeful things will start to look up then.

Robin S. said...

Hope so! If only white wine was a cure-all. Seriously.

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