Friday, May 20, 2011

Toy Time

Amy at the House of Cats wrote that she has a mysterious toy destroyer in her house. I can relate. Except that my toy destroyer is not a mystery. Star has been here for nearly 10 years, has had tons of toys, and very rarely have any of them been destroyed. Most of the time, when they were destroyed it was in inherent design flaw (one wicker ring with feathers on it came apart the first time I tossed it, she still likes it, but it’s a long thing with feathers now) or human error (stepped on, sucked up in the vacuum). (Amy, I try to comment, but it almost never seems to go through.. I don’t know why)
But now, I can watch toys being actively, deliberately, joyously destroyed almost on a daily basis. The sparkle ball on a stick with feathers.. Star had that for several years and it held up. Leo, here less than two months now, ate the blue and yellow feathers off the bottom of it. Those feathers, I have never seen again. There are also several ball type toys with feathers stuck on them, at least half have been de-feathered. However those feathers, mostly browns and black, are scattered all over the house.
Leo will pick up the broken, ex-toy feathers and carry them around in his mouth. He will pick them up in his large paws and swat them around. I haven’t the heart to toss them out even though they appear to be just scrap now, he loves them so.
I am so very glad that Star’s favorite toy doesn’t have feathers at all. Her butterfly has a body stuffed with catnip and wings lined with something crinkly. Over the years she has lost it and found it again. It turns up in odd places like under the dining room table. I know... it doesn’t seem like something could get lost under a dining room table.. But remember that the table is my computer center, the top is covered with all my periferials and under it is assorted other hardware and the odd old computer or two. Really, the only place for feet to get under it is, well, where my feet go. So her toy turning up there after a once-a-millennium cleaning was indeed odd.
Star doesn’t bat her butterfly around much, or play with it in a traditional cat like way. No, what she does is hold it between her paws and rub it around on her face. Sometimes she will hold it down with her arms and just lick lick lick lick it for the longest time. The rasp of her tongue slowly going over that material is oddly loud and sometimes feel like when nails run over a blackboard.. *shudder*
Amy also mentioned about Trixie liking pink toys. I can understand that. I once read an article about how cats tend to favor certain colors. So I put Star to the test. Whenever we go to a cat show, I go nuts at the sellers tables. I always buy a bunch of little fur mice. I always got mostly white ones with one or two black or gray ones. When I tested Star to see which color she liked, she showed a marked preference to black mice. Now I buy mostly black mice with one or two white or gray ones. Her butterfly? It’s black. Several of those ball toys with feathers are leopard skin patterned, with black on them of course.

I will have to test Leo one of these days and see if he prefers any color over another. We already know he prefers feathers to anything else! The yellow feather turned back up, and afer cleaning day it was in a pile of toys in a cat bed I made that no one uses for a cat bed.. It was buried under several things and Leo sat next to the bed and slowly, painstakingly, pulled that feather out from under everything else. Does this mean that he prefers the yellow to the purple?
This picture shows some of the toys in a pile by the myriad of scratchies. That blue thing stuffed under the chair? That’s the bed I made. Most of the time it’s just a boat for toys, when it doesn’t get shoved around.
Leo likes to lay where he wants to lay. He doesn’t care what is in his spot or what’s covering it.
The Royal Footstool is almost always under the card table when it’s up for dinner. And Leo is almost always on the Royal Footstool under that table.
Leo likes to sleep on The Chair, even when it’s being used as a catch all. Even when a tray table is covering it. (He tried to steal the folded towels from on top of that table.. Silly cat, go find a feather!)

As I’ve said before, and have a million pictures of, Leo wants to sit on the hidiously uncomfortable folding chairs whenever they are up. Sitting on one yourself? Don’t stand up, because even before your posterior has completely cleared the chair’s air space, he will be on it! Heaven forbid you should sit back down without looking...

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