My cat, Saber, is truly something to behold. She’s a sweet (most of the time, when she wants to be) Domestic Shorthair that my husband and I adopted from our local animal shelter in September 2016, when she was just three months old. She’ll be a year old in June, and she’s already gotten so big. Here’s a picture of her:
While she is sweet and beautiful, she can also be rather…tenacious at times, and I mean that in the most literal sense of the word. A Google search of “tenacious” yields this definition: “tending to keep a firm hold of something; clinging or adhering closely.” And another definition: “not readily relinquishing a position, principle, or course of action; determined.” This is my Saber in a nutshell. She is probably one of the most tenacious felines I have ever met. Let me tell you why:
1. She Literally Holds a Firm Grip
Saber often likes to pounce on my leg and dig her claws in, and occasionally even bite me while doing it. Of course, she’s just trying to play and utilize her hunting skills, but it really hurts! She’s been good about not doing it in the last few weeks, though, at least not on my right side, which is typically her leg of choice. Maybe she knows I’m getting a tattoo there, and that’s why she hasn’t chosen to do this as much. For that, I am grateful, because she really knows how to be aggressive when she wants to play in this manner. Usually a firm, “no!” and picking up her favorite toy and playing with her is enough to get her to stop. Most of the time.
2. She is Persistent about Playtime
Ever met a cat who is absolutely persistent about being played with 24/7? Probably not as persistent as my cat is. When she wants you to play with her, she lets you know by meowing as loud as she can. Her meows often turn into shrieks or screams at times if you aren’t paying attention to her the second that she wants you to. The cutest thing she does, though, is when my husband and I come home from work, she will meow at us and rub up against us until we acknowledge her. I’ve noticed that if I go do something in the apartment before acknowledging Saber after I walk through the door, she will meow, and meow, and meow, and meow, while following me around, until I pet her and say hi to her. But I love this, and think it’s absolutely adorable.
Another way in which Saber is tenaciously persistent about playtime is that she will do things to get your attention–often messy things, to let you know she wants to play. She may unroll the toilet paper, start scratching in her litter box just to see how much litter she can kick out onto the floor (thank heaven for litter mats), drag food out of her food bowl and then bat it all around the bathroom floor, or jump in and out of the bathtub and run back and forth through the house at mach speed. But I love her through it all. She’s cute, and she’s just trying to get a little attention. And I, as a good kitty mommy, am happy to oblige.
3. Speaking of Playtime…She Thinks She’s Our Personal Alarm Clock
Saber has a job in this household, or at least she thinks she does. 🙂 She operates as our personal alarm clock on a daily basis. When she was a very small kitten, she would sleep curled up on my chest most of the night, then would wake up at 4 A.M. and start getting into things. However, she eventually grew out of that and now, she starts out by sleeping on my chest, then migrates to the foot of the bed by morning. She generally likes to wake us up between 6:00 A.M. and 7:00 A.M., which is fine, as we have to work, but she’s persistent! She’ll start chirping, as though she sees a bird, at about 6:15 A.M, which is code for, “Mom and Dad, wake up!” Normally, it’s mostly, “Mom, wake up and play with me!” but she’ll take whoever wakes up first. I try to ignore the chirping until at least 6:30, but this usually results in her pouncing on me and playfully biting me, or she’ll jump up on the bed, lay on my chest, and start batting at my face until I get up and go play with her favorite toy out in the living room. Speaking of toys, want to know what she has chosen as her favorite? It is literally a piece of fleece cut into strips and attached to a string. Similar to this, but slightly larger:
Yes, my cat is a tenacious little girl, but I love her despite everything. Often, when she and I are relaxing at home on one of my days off, she will curl up on my lap, purr, and fall asleep as I am lying on the couch watching Netflix, Hulu, or playing video games. When she does this, my heart absolutely melts. I love cuddling my kitty and bonding with her, any chance I get.
I hope you enjoyed this glimpse into the tenacious life of the American kitty. I’m sure if Saber could talk or type, she would add more to this blog post, but that is all that I could come up with for now.
Tricks of the Trade
One last thought that I will leave you with. If you’re looking for some good supplies for your cat, I highly recommend PetSmart. They have quite the selection for cats, both online and in-store. Here are some of the things that I use to keep my kitty happy and healthy, and to also maintain nice, clean, scratch-free (relatively, except for our furniture) living quarters:
- Whisker City Litter Catcher Cat Mat–This thing has been an absolute life saver for me! At our old apartment, whenever Saber would use the litter box or play in it, she would throw piles of litter everywhere and get it all over the bathroom floor. I actually ruined a vacuum cleaner because I was constantly vacuuming it up all the time. Now that we’ve moved to a larger apartment, we have this litter mat, and it is extremely convenient. Any mess she makes is confined to the mat, and I can just shake it out onto the floor and sweep it up whenever I replace her litter.
- Good Natured Kitten Food–This is the PetSmart brand of cat food, and it is what I am feeding Saber right now. It’s first ingredient is chicken. It’s mostly chicken and vegetables, and has no by-products in it. It’s super healthy, and super affordable! I’ll keep feeding it to her over the course of this month and next month, then when she turns a year old, I’ll switch her over to Good Natured Adult Food. She only likes dry food, but they do also offer wet food for cats and kittens, should you desire this over dry food.
- Tidy Cats Lightweight Cat Litter–This is literally the best cat litter that I have discovered so far. As far as odor control is concerned, I’d probably give it about a seven out of ten, but in terms of effectiveness and weight, I’d give it a ten out of ten. It’s so easy to scoop when cleaning the litter box each day, and because of how lightweight it is, it doesn’t hurt my arms carrying it up to our third-floor apartment, like other types of cat litter do. This is the only cat litter that I will buy, now that I know of its existence (I was using Fresh Step with Febreeze before, which is also good, but very heavy), and will be sad if they ever stop making it.
- Comfort Zone Spray with Feliway–This is one of my favorite cat products so far, and one that I will probably keep using with every cat that I ever have. It has several different functions, all of which are absolutely wonderful. The biggest thing that we use it for is to keep Saber from scratching at our bedroom door when we have to close it, and to keep her from scratching walls in general, or trying to jump up and get at the fish tank (which, thankfully, she hasn’t done, yet). It works like an absolute charm! We also spray it in her carrier a few minutes before we have to take her somewhere, and it calms her down enough to where she will just meow in protest, but won’t frantically try to find a way out of the carrier like she used to when she was younger. This also works as a deterrent for cats to stop urinating in the house, though we have never had to use it for this purpose, as she only did that when she was sick when we first adopted her, then stopped doing it once she got healthy, and has used the litter box ever since with no problems. Therefore, I can’t speak to its effectiveness as a deterrent to urinating, but others say it’s effective. It’s also safe for cats, as it only has two ingredients: Feline facial hormone/pheromone, and ethanol. We have never had any problems in using it, and will continue to use it indefinitely.