I think I’ve mentioned before how Cat used to wake me most mornings by lying beside me and purring into my ear, then stretching out for a cuddle before leading me to his brush.
In contrast, Not Cat seems to be modelling his morning behaviour on Cato, Inspector Clouseau’s servant. He sleeps quietly for half the night, and then gets up to play. Around five in the morning, he sees any movement, especially of feet, as an invitation to pounce. As soon as I show any sign of getting out of bed he rugby tackles me, and wants a full on game of wrestling. Fortunately he’s very gentle and only play bites, but it’s a bit disconcerting.
He’s completely over his front door phobia, and loves to play on the stairs, though he retreats growling to the top landing if anyone lower down opens or shuts their front door. In the garden he’s had a stuck-in-the-tree incident, is finding all Cat’s old favourite places, and is increasingly confident. He’s also met three of the local moggies. He’s chased two of them. The third snuck up on him and made him jump, so I made play with the waterspray.
I’m glad to see he thinks this is his territory – it is – but a bit surprised that he thinks he can take on Sonny, the alpha male of the area and our local kitten father and semi-feral.
Sonny was remarkably tolerant; sitting his ground and watching without so much as a hiss or hint of fluffed up fur. Maybe he was just bemused by the effrontery, or thinking “and whose army?” as Not Cat crouched and stalked, his tail puffed up and two ridges of raised fur down his back, and I hovered in the background.
Really I’d like him to make it plain to Not Cat that he is The Boss without it coming to fisticuffs, and even taking him under his wing, or paw, as he has his son who lives over the road.
The other cat Not Cat chased is the new puss on the block, a handsome mainly black heavyweight with white paws. I think he was so astonished by this rush of furious ginger fur that he fled without thinking, but I wouldn’t trust that he’ll always retreat.
But so far, Not Cat has yet to meet his mirror image, the naughty intact ginger who is spraying my neighbours’ kitchens.
I want to be around to see how that one pans out. Will they be friends or foes? Cat didn’t have any feline friends. He thought all other cats should be eradicated, preferably by himself, or at least exiled. I would call the vet’s surgery to ask for an appointment and the receptionist would say, “fighting again?” in a knowing tone. She was usually right. He reluctantly and crossly acknowledged Sonny as the Godfather, but understanding that Sonny was nervous of humans, would hurl insults and threats if I were with him, using me as a sort of human shield.
Maybe I should be encouraging Not Cat’s early morning ambushes. After all, if he fights, I want him to win and carry on Cat’s tradition.