Your feline furriend sits and observes how you unwrap all kinds of toys for him to frolic with. He calmly watches how you try to entice him with balls and sticks and bells and whatnot. His excellent improvisation at playing the beautiful statuette is perfected with a distant stare when you are waving a mousey in front of his furry countenance. And then it culminates in the flawless execution of the most bored yawn ever witnessed by humankind.
But the yawn shuts with an audible click when out come the feathers. And the magnificent statuette explodes in an 18-clawed frolicking frenzy. Fea-vurs !!!
This scenario sounds familiar ? Sure it does. It never amazes me how I can literally strew the toys around but only the ball-with-feathers attracts feline attention. Oh yes, the ball that tinkles rouses them too, most of the time. But if you want to see a feline denizen of the House of Chaos moving you’d better whip out the feathers. Because for some obscure reason, no doubt a very sound evolutionary one, our cats will hunt anything that sports those tickly wispy appendages. Woe the bird that strays into the Garden of Chaos ! Woe the ball-with-feathers that is unwrapped by the Mistress…
I first discovered this when Bean Sidhe entered the House of Chaos. In order to play with the kitten, since no playmates were available unless the two elderly cats would feel obliging but I bet they wouldn’t, I had purchased a stick with feathers on top of it and on one of our first evenings proceeded to present it to the hapless kitten when he was snuggling with us in The Nest. The effect was dramatic. Immediately his tiny seeing-orbs were glued to the stick’s top, his head bobbing up and down with the movement of the stick, his tiny furry body quivering with anticipation of the joy to come. And then he exploded in the fiercest playing frenzy I’ve ever had the pleasure to witness. Oh boy ! How he loved that stick.
The elder cats didn’t care much for any toy but the stick soon caught their attention too. Alas, Bean Sidhe is a rather thorough kitty and when he was finished with the stick only a few sad remnants that once proudly sported brightly coloured tufts of feather were left to protrude from the stick. Not much to play with then. And thus a new stick was purchased and soon joined the lot of his predecessor. *sigh* I knew this was going to cost me a fortune, but if it kept little Bean Sidhe happily occupied it was worth it. One shudders at the thought of what else he would have demolished if he didn’t have the stick to keep him busy with.
Fast forward a year later and enter Hrimnir. A new feathered stick was purchased in order to celebrate the occasion and subsequently demolished. But then, during one of her bouts of shopping, the Mistress discovered a new toy, a new surprise for the kitties… a feathered ball. Bright red with yellow/blue stripes and 2 feathers on top, green and red. The ultimate cat-toy. And when I gave one to Hrimnir you could safely state that all Hell did indeed break loose.
Hrimnir is absolutely crazy about those balls. He bats them and chases them and tumbles around them and throws them into the air. He does the entire ground floor of the House of Chaos with them and I could say we already found them little balls in the strangest places. He also manages to lose them in an astonishing rate. I’m already down to my third package (with 4 balls in) simply because we can’t find the other balls anymore. And when we do find them they are usually sans feathers too. Every Wednesday, when the Cleaning Lady does a round-up of all toys and drops them into their designated basket, we find less of them and thus the supply needs to be refreshed every month or so.
A feathered toy is just about the only toy the feline denizens of the House of Chaos would fight each other over. Or move at all. Even Loup-Garou, the Ultimate and Consummate Couch-Potato, has been seen trying his paw at one of those feathered balls and we definitely had him moving for the stick-with-feathers. But Zorro, El Grumpy Severus Maximus, has deigned to swat at them when one happened to roll by. To our towering surprise he didn’t subsequently swat at the rambunctious kitten that followed it. So he must have been having fun ! Will the sun go up in the West tomorrow morning ?
Nevertheless, the elder cats have found one positive side to the presence of this little feather-balls that immensely pleases them: as long as Hrimnir is joyfully occupied with chasing them balls he is not available to be romping with his elders. Which suits those indolent sloths mightily well indeed.
Picture below: Hrimnir with his new Best Friend (until he loses it again)
Would there be feathers on the Friday Ark ? We’d better board it in order to find out now shouldn’t we ?
PS: Zorro is still ill. The wound at his left front paw proved more extensive than we thought (or saw) and only until he licked the fur off his paw did we see the other claw marks (so now we know he must have gotten hurt during a fight). He sported a huge abscess above the wounds (from elbow to wrist) this morning but fortunately it sprang when he was grooming his wounds. It looks like it is draining well but we will visit the vet tomorrow morning if it doesn’t get better by then. Many thanks for your purrs and purrayers those who sent them !