My cat’s online dating profile

photo (1)Name: Pancake

Sex: Female

Residence: District of Columbia, just up the road from Bo.

Age: Between 2 and 3, but I don’t look a day over 1 and 1/2.

Looking for: Someone to share the litter box with.

Kittens: None and spayed.

About: I was adopted from a shelter nearly two years ago. Since then, I’ve moved around a bit with my owners (I let them think they own me, but really, I own them). I’ve been living in the nation’s capital for about six months now and find it very invigorating.

My favorite hobbies are looking out the window and mewing at birds, watching the garbage truck in the morning, spreading cat litter all over the apartment, chasing laser pointers and shoelaces, and climbing into the toilet. Although I don’t mind playing alone or with my “owners,” I know having like-minded company would make playtime way more enjoyable. It’s no fun to get high on catnip alone, after all.

I can’t get enough tuna in my diet, and I want someone who is willing to share a can with me, maybe even let me get the first helping.

I am very clean, always licking myself everywhere, sometimes this results in hairballs, but it’s the price to pay to look good. If your not clean it’s OK, I’d suffer a hairball for you.

When I’m not playing or eating, I’m probably pooping or sleeping. I try and get a solid 19 daily (this applies to pooping and sleeping).

I can offer lots of cuddles and endless scratches.

Paw me up!

Copy cat

I blogged yesterday about the summer cold that has been tearing at my very being the past week. I am just now emerging from drowning in my mucus-laden lungs and able to, once again, inhale some quality O2.

I guess my cat felt that my being ill was detracting far too much from the over adoration I oh-so-normally dote on her and decided that two could play at this game.

"Meeeeeeowwwww...I feel sick...I'm going to puke on you now."

“Meeeeeeowwwww…I feel sick…I’m going to puke on you now.”

So, like a true drama queen, upon arrival at home, Pancake puked three times (that I could find) and meowed incessantly the most pathetic little mews that ever mewed until I thought my heart would shatter. I can’t imagine what it must be like for parents taking care of actual people/children because I was ready to rush her to the emergency room lest something more terrible be amiss!

I instantly began Googling what to do when one’s cat is sick and what the causes could be. The internet has some scary information out there and, naturally, I assumed the worst.

There was a series of manic texts to my boyfriend, the original Pancake owner, with panicked hypotheses. I was sure she had swallowed one of my hair ties, or that she poisoned herself on some cleaning supplies, or that she had cancer and cat diabetes and the flu. The boyfriend told me to relax and said that she probably is just constipated which made me want to run out and by laxatives for the poor feline to alleviate (or, I guess add a bit to) her suffering.

In the end, I relaxed and did my best to make her feel comfortable, thinking that if by morning she wasn’t well, I would call 911.

I built her a fort. She likes to be alone when she feels badly, and tends to prefer isolated dark places which aren’t in abundance in my city apartment. I constructed an epic fortress that she could feel safe dwelling with all the privacy a sick cat could hope—with me checking on her every five minutes.

La Fortress da Pancake

La Fortress de Pancake

Next, I brought a glass of water near to her so if she got thirsty and was unable to make it to her normal watering hole, she’d have easy quench access. Dehydration is a terrible offender with the sick and I don’t want to have to resort to a cat IV.

To offer her further comfort, I put out a heating pad for her to lay on. I read that this makes her feel like she’s not alone, while being alone (best of both worlds), and feels reassuring, like a security blanket. When it gets too warm, she can lay next to it, and when she needs it, plop back on! I certainly enjoy a warm blanket on my belly when I have a tummy ache too.

Toasty, cozy belly warming pad.

Toasty, cozy belly warming pad.

Throughout the night, the mews slowed down, she strolled around a bit, rolled around to find the best position to relax her belly, and by morning she wasn’t at 100% but she was most certainly better. No 911 calls were made…yet.

Last night, I was able to forget my own pain and suffering to ease that of my diva cat. I don’t know if all this was a ruse for more attention or to help me forget my troubles by mimicking my mannerisms and woes from the last days, but it worked. She got a fort, excessive cuddles, light play, a few snacks that she kept down (and some she didn’t), and someone else to clean up her messes without complaint.

My feline roommate

So…I have a cat. Her name is Pancake.

Since stealing obtaining this cat from my boyfriend several months ago, I noticed a little hitch in my daily routine. Everything I do and everywhere I go within my 800-square feet abode, there is a little kitten invading my space, tripping me up, and making even the simplest of tasks  cumbersome.

I type away at my computer, blogging as I do, when my breakfast-named cat marches onto my keyboard, sits her rump down on the letters, and just looks at me like, “what are you going to do about this?”

Cats and owners that blog together, stay together.

Cats and owners that blog together, stay together.

In the shower, I’m singing the latest hits from the pop charts, and a little face pokes between the curtain, gives me a quizacle look, then just stays there, gazing at me lather, rinse, and repeat. Suddenly, I feel very self-conscious.

Privacy in the shower? Who wants that?

Privacy in the shower? Who wants that?

Practicing dental hygiene is a chore, as that’s when Pancake decides she wants to hang out in the sink, preventing me from preventing cavities.

Pancake: "I'm sorry, were you using this space?"

Pancake: “I’m sorry, were you using this space?”

The creepiest moments are when I wake up and she is sitting like a sphinx on my pillow, watching. How long she does that for I don’t know, but it’s enough for me to wonder what she is pondering.

Hello. I am here. Watching.

Hello. I am here. Watching. Waiting.

Laundry, cooking, vacuuming (she fears this most of all), stretching, sitting, she’s always there…perhaps…plotting her owner’s demise?

I'm laundry!

I’m laundry! Wash me!

Even though she gets in the way from time to time, and tries to jump in the toilet when I’m not looking, hacks hairballs occasionally, and almost gouges my eyes out every 5am morning (weekends included), I can’t imagine a better cat to make my daily life slightly more difficult.

This is how we roll in my apartment. Word.

This is how we roll in my apartment. Word.

Snuggles!

Snuggles!

When my evil plans come to fruition…I get a cat.

Growing up, I lived in a very pet friendly house, especially for dogs (at one point, my house boasted 5 pups). From dogs to guinea pigs, hamsters to goldfish galore, and even a brother, I was never wanting in the pet department.

Alas, there was one animal I always wanted that was never to be: a sweet, little kitty cat, but everyone in my stupid family was allergic.

I made one attempt at cat ownership in high school. One summer, on an organized excursion in Maine, I stumbled upon free kittens. I tried soooo hard to 1) smuggle one in my shirt and through the New England states back to PA and 2) convince my mother that the cat could live a great life in my bedroom, thus, no one would have an allergic reaction. There was a “no” and lies about how crossing state borders with cats was illegal.

Most people may think I’m crazy to have desired a cat so very, very much. They think cats are feisty, moody, high-strung creatures, and while some are, others are quite delightful and chock full of personality.

Pancake, yes Pancake, my cat, yes MY cat, is small, mighty, and full of personality—and hairballs.

The story of Pancake is both magical and not magical (it’s not magical).

IMG_1561

Pancake just loves my closet, but she never can decide what to wear, so she just sheds over everything.

Once upon a time I started dating my current boyfriend, and truth be told, what won me over was his cat, Pancake. It was our 3rd date—a date I forced myself go on to give him “one more chance” and to prove to me he was worth either a 4th date or to put the kabash on the whole situation.

When I entered his apartment, there was Pancake meowing and purring sprawled out on the floor ready to have her belly rubbed. So wacky and sweet, she couldn’t get enough tummy cuddles from me, a complete stranger. It was love at first sight. In the following weeks I visited my boyfriend and spent considerable time having Pancake chase a laser pointer and sneaking her cat treats she would later vomit (and that the boyfriend cleaned up). She tried so hard to crawl into the toilet and refused to drink from anything but the faucet or my glass of Miller Lite.

It came to pass that I was going to catsit Pancake while my boyfriend hiked Mount Rainier for two weeks. The boy and I packed up her favorite loveys and her litter box and settled her in my 800-square foot apartment for an adventure in the nation’s capital.

On Pancake’s first day at my place, I left for the gym only to come back to her meowing like crazy, stuck on top of my kitchen cabinets, an ordeal she endured for several hours. She didn’t climb up there again.

Throughout her stay at Chez Gingermermaid, she was super cuddly and a respectful houseguest, always snuggling next to my legs at night to sleep, demanding belly rubs every time I walked in the front door, and managing to get in the toilet only once.

IMG_1873Alas, the boyfriend returned and it was time to give back the sweet little taste of kitty bliss I had. Since that time I began plotting…

I pondered 1) smuggling Pancake across the Maryland/DC line, but my mother’s lies still haunted me. 2) I began convincing the boyfriend he was a terrible caretaker and that Pancake was far happier with me than with him. 3) I looked at him with a quiver in my lip and a single tear in my eye, and only asked sweetly.

He replied to my requests, “but then I’ll miss her and she’s my cat.” I pretended to understand, but really, I thought he was being unfair and selfish. He may have rescued her from the shelter two years ago, but it was time she really understood what a loving home was about.

I won’t go into all the details, but there were two bigger cats living at my boyfriend’s, Pancake started getting  fat and was puking all the time (bulimic in order to cope with the stress from being away from me?), and the boyfriend was heading on an extended work trip. When I offered to catsit again, it turned into, “why don’t I just keep her?” He thought and thought and I batted my eyes and batted my eyes, and in the end, I won. All the while making him think it was his idea.

photo (4)photo (3)

Pancake is mine now.

What this story shows is that through manipulation, persistence  and the responsible use of sad girlfriend eyes, living on my own, I beat my odds, obtained a cuddly pet, and made the impossible dream come true of having my own kitty cat.