Hmm – what is it about cat litter…

Ianthe and Izabelle playing..

Ianthe and Izabelle playing..

As I leaned over the bathroom floor, scrubbing it carefully with the cloth in my hand, a spray of cat litter exploded over the fresh, clean and wet surface I had just finished with. At the same time, a light weight dropped on my back and an inquiring chirp sounded in my ear. Double trouble had arrived to help with my project of cleaning the bathroom.
You would have thought after 46 years of owning cats I would be used to the mischief kittens get into, but there were two main reasons why it all seemed harder work than usual. The first was that it had been a good 4 years since we last had a kitten – and then we only had one, while there was two now. And the second reason was that we didn’t just get any kittens – we got Somali kittens. Highly energetic, sociable (read: want to have a paw in everything), agile (read: no safe places), inquisitive (read: REALLY gets into E V E R Y T H I N G) and intelligent (read: stay on your toes or they will outwit you…). So yes, it is hard work.
I sighed, looked at the cat litter that was busy setting as concrete (we use very good cat litter) on the previously clean bathroom floor, and reached up a hand to scratch Izabelle behind her ears, while I lowered my head to get a kiss from Ianthe. And then I went back to washing the floor. Again. For the third time.
What is it about cleaning a litter box that immediately sends any cat in the house into a frenzy of digging through the litter to see if they can manage to get it outside the box again? Doesn’t Belong In Here, they announce. Much Better On The Floor, they comment. Can Live In My Fur, says my Persian, Ulysses. Eeeewww! Says my Maine Coon, Penny… And as for my old boy – a 17 year old Somali named D’Artagnan – well, he rolls his eyes, waits until I have cleaned the litter box – again – and THEN he uses it without digging. Am Clever, he pronounces as he majestically walks past the others, not even deigning to look at them. Mum Loves Me More When I Don’t Spray Cat Litter Everywhere. And I clean the litter box. For the third time….
There is a great saying. Dogs have owners, cats have staff. Sometimes that is translated as cats have slaves. I can vouch for both. In our household we are ruled by iron paws in very soft and delicate fur coverings. And we must like it – because the total count is now 5, bringing the dog, Molly, into a definite minority.

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