I’m always asking my cats silly rhetorical questions and of course, I pretend to know the answer with “oh yes I know you like chin stritches, Jackaboo.” Sometimes the answer to the question will remain a mystery, “Mr. Jack, do you have to exit the litter box at top speed scattering litter all over the floor?”
And sometimes the question begs, “Really George, do you have to raise your butt in the air when you pee?” most likely accompanied by an eye-roll and a bottle of Nature’s Miracle in tow. It’s National Answer Your Cat’s Question Day and we explore some of the common and not-so-common lines of questioning by our feline friends.
We always wonder what cats are thinking and in our poem, “Take Me by the Paw” Mr. Jack has done the courtesy of ‘cat-splaining’ why cats do the things they do. You know, general weird cat behaviors.
But do we really answer their pertinent questions?
Cats are constantly communicating their approvals or gripes about each other on their scratching posts. But what do they think of us and are they constantly asking us questions we are ignoring? Probably.
There are many things cats are asking, some of which are really obvious and most of us have learned to listen, take heed and make some changes to find solutions. Whether they are questions like “Why is the litter box so far to reach?” or “Who does the cleaning around here? My litter box reeks!” we have come a long way in understanding our feline friends and learning to think like a cat.
But we’re not off the hook! I know I need to be vigilant and program my cat-sensitivity button to constantly be mindful of what my cats are thinking and I know I can still improve.
So, here are a few questions posed by our purry paws and there is nothing rhetorical about these questions.
These kitties want answers!
1. Making the bed
Why do you shake out the sheets, getting us all excited about making the bed, then yell at us when we dive under and help you? It’s such a fun task, just run with it!
Answer: I find it cute and I only yell in mock disapproval
2. Playing ‘flick it off the table’
Why do you leave your pens on your desk and yell when I flick them off?
Answer: Honestly Baggy, I’m sorry I encouraged this game in the beginning when I thought it was cute. You really should stop now.
3. The Pro-catstinator
Why do you close the window to the catio when it’s cold and snowing outside? Don’t you know that it’s up to us to decide for ourselves whether we sink our paws in the snow or not? We need to keep tabs on our territory! We need to sniff the air and procrastinate a little before we decide it’s not for us. Give us a break! You’re the Queen of Procrastination, Lady!
Answer: This is simple, kitties. I don’t have the patience for pro-catstination coming from cats. But I will work on it, promise.
4. Human, tell me your secret thoughts
Lastly, George asks in his poem, “What are your thoughts, my human I wonder?”
Cats have such intense stares, some more intense than others. George has the latter. When I was at the shelter I had an immediate connection with George, who was then named “Vagabond.” He didn’t make a peep but his eyes locked onto mine and he stared at me the whole time with his piercing green eyes.
I was mesmerized.
His gaze would follow me wherever I walked in that reception room, not letting go. I knew without a doubt that he wanted to go home with us, that he chose me. He was telling me this with his eyes. They wanted to give him to a farm to live outdoors because he ‘wasn’t suited to domestic life indoors’. We wanted George to come live with us.
And he did. From the first moment he set his big puffy white paws in our home he never once bolted for the door as he did at the shelter. He’s our pariah cat, a little bit of a loner but still has the most intense stare that speaks a thousand words and asks a million questions. Which brings me back to his question “What are your thoughts, my human, I wonder?”
Answer: George, we have accepted your elevator butt syndrome and we don’t mind your peculiar litter box stance. Raise your butt however you wish and be proud of who you are! We understand that you must have been an orphan kitty who missed out on a mama to teach you basic kitty bathroom etiquette. But George, we love you just the way you are.
Is your relationship with your cat in top shape or do you need to improve your listening skills? Can you answer ALL of your cat’s questions? We know we can’t because sometimes we’re at a loss for words, but we’ll keep trying our best!