Playing Fetch…

Cats love a good game…

I try to set aside a little time each day to play with Callie and that wasn’t too difficult when she was the only one in the house.

We play ‘feather’ which involves a very long peacock feather regularly donated by my son and his wife, the bird trainers.

I sit on a couch in the study and wave it in front of her nose and she gets quite a workout chasing, leaping, stalking, and occasionally winning, the prize, if only for a moment.

Initially she’d start to pant after five minutes of strenuous jumping and twisting her body this way and that.  She’d lie on the carpet, pupils wide, chest heaving, ears flattened, her tongue hanging out.

At first I was startled but she gained stamina and now rarely gets so visibly puffed so I read her body language and when she begins to flag I say,

“That’s all!” and return the remains of the feather to its hiding place on a shelf in the hall.

She lets me know when she wants to play again.  I’ll find her sitting patiently at the closet door and gently mewing.

When the Barnies arrived on the scene I had three cats to entertain and found they were pretty good at providing enrichment for each other.

I wanted to be part of the fun and games so started the kittens with simple activities to uncover their particular interests.

Magic enjoys chasing my fingers across the back of the sofa or along the coverlet on our bed.  He attacks me quite roughly so I pull my hand back and walk away to teach him to go gently.  Gradually he’s learning how to keep his long claws sheathed and his teeth soft.

The object of this game is to get him to rush my hand so fiercely that his momentum tumbles him over the back of the sofa or the edge of the bed,

“Gotcha, gotcha, gotcha!”  I’ll say and get back to what I’m doing leaving him to figure out how he can make the game last longer.

He’s always ready, hunkering down in the couch cushions when he sees me coming, his eyes wide, his ears flat against his head and his hind quarters wagging from side to side.

Shadow takes a different approach.

A very different approach.

He has taught me to throw his mouse for him.

He has three and they disappear from time to time usually underneath the oven.  He has a well loved, grubby, white one, a tiny iridescent ‘pinky’ with a bell attached to its tail, and a loosely woven red one that snags his claws and has been loved so hard I’ve had to sew it up more than once when its insides start to  spill out.

I have to say this is the most adorable behavior and I can’t resist him when he runs towards me and plonks his toy into my lap,

He can keep it up for a couple of dozen throws…

…when he feels like it!

And I’m game whether I’m watching Netflix or it’s bed time…

He’s such a dog!

Only, there’s no slobber!

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