Friday, May 15, 2009

Is the Glass Half Full or Half Empty?

By Daniel Quagliozzi


Our recent blog, My Cat Made Me Do It and My Alarm Clock Is Hungry sparked some seriously interesting replies from our readers. It's good to know that I am not alone in my situation with Matilda, the 18 year old tortie-terror.

As promised, I have compiled a lot of the replies that I found most intriguing and have posted them below. What amazes me the most about your emails and comments is the popularity of cats that drink from glasses, sinks and non-pet specified decanters. Maybe we're on to something here? Enjoy the comments and thanks to all of you for contributing to LDYK!


Water, water everywhere and not a drop to drink...

My little Matilda's name was Klarizza, big gold eyes and black she owned me! Also not only did she drink from the glass she would cup her paw in the glass and drink that way. But what I still miss is I couldn't figure out why I didn't always here the alarm. Because Missy Klarizza would walk on or around my head and stand with her from legs on the snooze button and then go back to her pillow and back to sleep. That was my girl and I still miss her.

~ SFGATE comment


Double ditto on the water glass. And if the water level is too low for the little pink tongue to reach it, in goes a cupped paw to get the water up to tongue level. Cats have staff.

~ Heandi


Daniel has Matilda the cat. My roommate Karole has Betsy. Betsy drinks out of a medium sized blue mug located on top of Karole's bookcase. Usually she dips her front paw into the water and then licks it off. Over time Karole has tried to replace it with other styles of mugs, but Betsy refuses to drink from them. Betsy also likes to collect random objects from all over the house and deposit them on Karole's bed. Yesterday's haul was a plastic straw and a quarter.
~ Jamey


I am currently the owner of two adorable, large, quirky cats. They are both physically eccentric, which makes me even more fond of them, and in my eyes very enjoyable to watch in their day to day activities. One of my favorite things to watch these little rug rats do is drink water. I swear, I have tried every shaped water dish for cats you could find. They refuse to drink out of water bowls, it's just not in their nature. They eat of out normal cat dishes, but when you place the water next to it, they could really care less. Usually, they just pig out and get food in the water, thus turning them off even more.


So how do my cats stay hydrated? My bathroom sink! I could hire Mr. Clean and I still would have a consistent amount of kitty paw prints on my sink counter. Lily literally wedges her entire body into the sink, head towards the faucet, only to enjoy just the smallest dribble of water. I can be doing my make up, brushing my teeth or cleaning and she will still just get all up in the sink, like she owns it. I guess it's therapeutic for her? She reminds of a fat raccoon washing in a stream - except it's my big girl cat who knows she's getting her way.

~ Jessica


Soze balances on the toilet ledge, using his one front arm to steady himself, and then dunks his head into the water. I mean full on facial dunk into the toilet, like he needs a refreshing dip with his beverage? He will also meow/howl if the toilet seat is down, only to stop once you lift the lid for him (don't assume I'm rude b/c my toilet seat is always up!). He also gets annoyed if the toilet is in use, because apparently toilets only exist to keep my cat's thirst at bay (for the record, he only drinks clean toilet water!).

I suppose this is bad kitty behavior, but I have literally tried to detour them, and it just won't work. It also doesn't help that they can open doors, so shutting them out of the bathroom is just a joke to them. All in all, they are good kitties, and I am a sucker so therefore they get their way. I must admit, it's pretty entertaining to see 12+ lb cats wedge and dunk in my bathroom, when they could just simply lap out of a water dish. Although, I must admit, life is pretty good when the only living thing hogging your bathroom is your cat....

~ Stacey

It doesn't end with water. Some people shared all kinds of stories with us...

My number one cat had a list of tricks to play on me, seventeen pages long, single-spaced. She never had to go beyond page one. One of my current cats came to me when he was eight years old. He is still training me; I am so stupid.

~ SFGATE comment

I had a cat like Matilda. Her name was Gina. Funny, also a torti. And funnier still - with that exact behavior of turning in circles under the covers until she found her exact comfy spot. One cute thing she did was she would curl up around my neck and let me wrap an arm around her to which she would raise her arm and drape over my arm. God, I miss that.May she rest in peace 1989-2007

~ Tortimom

My 14+ year old 16 pounder also has her list of commands, which include: 1) I should stay home all day every day (it's a challenge, what with the full time job and all) 2) Water in the same locale Matilda prefers--and it had better be fresh! 3) Shade pulled up JUST enough to let her see out and make maximum use of afternoon sun 4) food bowl NEVER EVER SHOWING THE WHITE AT THE BOTTOM! 5) litter box cleaned WAY more than I do it. Apparently I am still not quite fully trained, but I'm working on it! God I love cats.

~ SFGATE comment

My feline companion, LittleBit, comes to me in the afternoons and demands I tuck him into bed. He will sit there and cry, then race to the bedroom and proceed to burrow under the covers by my feet. I have to stay put for at least 10 minutes or he gets cranky. He also let's me know when the kitty litter is getting nasty by having me follow him to the back, placing one paw in the litterbox, then looking up at me. He's such a good boo.

~ SFGATE comment


First off, I would like to commend your most recent blog about Matilda's quirks, it was a very fun read and it's nice to know that my cat wasn't the only one to demand cold water out of a glass :) Missy hated anything and everything with a strong odor. So I suppose it goes without saying that everything scented had to go. No more lotions, perfume, hair products, air fresheners, incense, smoking, even gum - it all had to go. She was blessed with many crazy quirks, which can never be duplicated quite the same, and despite her passing last year I still plan on keeping my house ever more scent free...

~ Kirsten

And FINALLY, We saved the BEST for Last...

My cat Violet was born to a feral mother who lived somewhere among the runways at SFO. She's never been a particularly affectionate cat (with humans, that is. She loves her cat companion, Junie, like crazy), but she has ways of asking for the kind of attention she's comfortable with.

This video shows her engaging in her nightly bid for some "buttbone-bumping" with my foot:

~ Dennis

Wait....before you click to see Violet's Ritual, take note of the two links below it. Ok, now you can watch the video.

We love your stories. Keep them coming! Email any stories or requests for Cat Behavior advice topics to

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