High rise

Over the past year we had countless instances when a frantic call from outside would bring the simian residents of the House of Chaos into the Garden of Chaos in order to witness one of the rarest sights in nature: a cat in distress, standing on a pole or wall of barely 1,80 meters high, or the roof of the garden-shed which comes at 1,50 to 2,00 meters max, and clearly calling for help, assistance, succour, whatever if it involves getting him off that scary height NOW.
Bean Sidhe is vertically challenged. No, I’m not kidding. He has vertigo. Which is very very bad for a cat.

It doesn’t help much for his self-esteem that the Brothers are always located nearby sniggering their little furry heads off. Or that the newest member of the Feline Household is exactly his opposite: Hrimnir has been seen walking over the roofs of both the veranda and the garden-shed the day before yesterday and he’s only 13 weeks old ! The tyke is still working on getting down though, but that doesn’t deter him from trying to get up there in the first place. Unlike Bannikins, who is clearly distraught whenever he has to negotiate a jump from higher than 1 meter.

Of course, the fact that Bean Sidhe has a rather massive body might be the reason for his unease up high, but Loup-Garou is heavier by a full kilo and he rarely takes the low road whenever the high road is available. Yet… when you observe both felines you might discern a few dissimilarities in overall body make-up and those differences are quite important.

For one thing: Bean Sidhe stands a lot higher on his hind paws than Loup-Garou. His hind legs are longer and therefore his gait is a bit different. His Maine Coon heritage, no doubt, has something to do with it. It is known that Coonies prefer to live the low life and avoid climbing. So poor Bannikins has no choice but to face it: that magnificent body of his just isn’t made for climbing and jumping. His is more the hunter’s build, the prowler, the pouncer, with his forceful hind-legs propelling his body towards high speed and deadly force. Them thews are made for explodin’, just not the vertical kind.

For another thing: Loup-Garou may look more massively built than Bean Sidhe, but he is also 8 years older… his frame is more solid, his muscles are better developed. Being a Coonie mix Bean Side, despite having celebrated his first birthday two months ago, is still a kitten and won’t be fully adult for maybe a year yet (Coonies tend to be immature for 3 years !!). He is still a baby and hence not fully developed.

Whatever his reasons, Bean Sidhe hates to be on top. And you can imagine how he hates it even more when his little brother, his partner-in-crime, is growing up and shows a clear delight in climbing and walking the highway, where he himself does not. Hrimnir is growing fast these days, as all kittens are wont to do, but he has been setting new records when it comes to climbing. I have rarely seen a kitten negotiating a roof whilst being so young yet ! At his tender age he should still be trying to climb the heap of stones in the Garden of Chaos -and be mightily proud of it- under the watchful and benevolent eye of Bean Sidhe, his Big Bro’. But no, Hrimmikins has to negotiate the garden walls, he has to climb that fir tree, he has to see where the roof ends and he had to find out where that sawed-off and discarded chimney-pipe on the roof of the garden-shed leads.
(It leads to the edge of said roof, and despite his diminutive stature little Hrimnir can’t turn around in that pipe… but he yet can’t jump from it either… oh dreadful dilemma… and thus the rare sight -and sound- of a wailing Hrimnir poking his tiny furry head out of that pipe giving clear signals of distress and discomfort… It would be funny if that pipe hadn’t been made out of asbestos. But Bouncing Psycho has A Use For It and so it still lies there.)

Hrimnir has his heritage in his favour I guess, since he is a mix Norvegian Forest Cat himself, and they are supposed to be devilish climbers. I’m very curious as to the future development of his body though. Will he, like Bean Sidhe, have the build but lack the long hair ? Or will he have the long hair but without the typical stature of his mother’s breed ?

Any road, at the rate our little Hrimnir is developing his skills we can expect to see him climbing the High Roof one of these days. And won’t the nice gentlemen of the Fire Department have fun then ?

Picture below:
Just to show you the size of things. Somewhere in the picture is Hrimnir.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

It’s Sunday so we’re dropping by again at the Carnival of the Cats !!

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