Mornings with the Cats

Cats are creatures of routine, and this definitely applies to my little pounce. While Garrus does not always come up onto the bed for a visit as we wake up, as Boudicca and Charlie do on a regular basis, Garrus greets us with his characteristically jaunty trot and lots of tail hugs. He habitually escorts one of us into Aaron’s office to his food bowl and waits patiently by the door. “Good morning, my caretakers! I trust you slept well. It’s time for breakfast!” he seems to say. Keep in mind that Garrus only meows (politely, mind you) when in the carrier; otherwise he does not meow, squeak, chatter, or make any other noise. Even his purr is so quiet most of the time that you can’t tell he is purring unless you feel his neck.

After we feed the cats and refresh their water, it is our routine to visit each of the cats, or sometimes, they come to us. Boudicca wakes up and joins us by the kitchen table, where she stares intently at Aaron as she attempts to execute the Schnauzer Mind Meld. (As I have mentioned before, Boudicca has not yet figured out that she is, in fact, not a Miniature Schnauzer.) Aaron sits on the Morsel Distribution Throne and has the Morsel Distribution Hand. Apparently his morsels taste better than mine. We occasionally give her tiny bits of egg (good for her coat) or meat. (There are people food items that are safe for cats.) When Aaron has waffles or pancakes, Boudicca seems to pout, since she firmly believes that all people food is for kitties and does not understand when we don’t share.

This past week, there was a beautifully choreographed kitty ballet in our kitchen whenever we gave Boudicca her medication in wet food. The boys were keenly interested in what prompted Boudicca to become such a Meower Mouth. Charlie had to contribute his two cents by squeaking. Garrus, a characteristically quiet Gentleman Cat, simply pirouetted with his tail high and a hopeful expression, “I used to eat wet food. I like it…May I have some please?” Unfortunately I was not able to get the kitty ballet on video but I did capture a short video of Boudicca demonstrating her Meower Mouth alter ego.

Usually Charlie comes to us as we wake up and happily purrs when we give him rubs. Once we wake up, he trots off to play in the living room, snuggle with Garrus on the ottoman, or hang out on his favorite platform on the cat tower. Sometimes he will stroll by the kitchen table as we eat breakfast, squeaking, polishing our ankles, giving tail hugs, and generally being cute. Incidentally, his presence occasionally bugs Boudicca, although she will ignore him if she is intent on begging. After breakfast, we stop by the cat tower, where Charlie has taken up his post, and remind him how cute he is. Cue slow blinks.

Garrus doesn’t often visit us while we eat breakfast. He tends to hang out in the living room, where his favorite spot (the ottoman) is. Boudicca meanwhile claims her spot on the couch. Garrus has a habit of following us into the bedroom–or me into the bathroom–and asks for pets. If I am standing up and wiggle my fingers in invitation, he can be convinced to jump onto the bed for scritches. His preferred spot for visits, however, is on the ottoman.

This morning I sat on the ottoman and called Garrus. He trotted over with a marked spring in his step and tail-hugged my legs. Then he hopped up onto the ottoman and rubbed himself against my back and hands, semi-flopping next to me. He started purring quietly when I scritched this side of his neck and shoulder, or when I scritched the base of his tail. (Cue elevator butt.)

Since we’ve been working on getting him acclimated to being handled, I gently picked him up and placed him on my lap. I do this regularly but he tends to jump off after about 10-30 seconds. This morning he appeared to be calmer and more relaxed because he remained on my lap for a few minutes. I gently stroked him (not too much so he would not get over-stimulated) and talked to him, telling him how handsome and good he was. He continued to purr and slow blinked. When he decided to end our lovely lap session, he did not abruptly kick off my lap but instead stood up and leisurely walked over to the free space on the ottoman next to me. Lying down, he looked up at me with those big yellow eyes and asked me to continue petting him, which of course I did. What a breakthrough!

During our visit, Charlie woke up and started playing. As per his habit, he plucked the toy mice from the highest platform, choosing one by one with his mouth or paws and deliberately throwing them onto the floor. He held the largest (his newest prize) in his mouth and carried it as he climbed down the cat tree and strolled over to me. He gave one muffled squeak, dropped the mouse at my feet, and flopped over so I could give him a belly rub. Unfortunately I did not have my camera with me or else I would have recorded it. But he was SO CUTE. All in all it was a very pleasant morning!

Do your cats like to greet you in the morning? What are your morning routines with your fur people? Are they lovey in the morning or in the evening? Tell your stories in the comments section!

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