Starlight’s New Toy

by | Jun 15, 2014 | Nedda's Animal Family | 7 comments

Starlight Meets Daisy

The indoor world’s a bore.

The outdoor world is more . . .

more stimulating,

more exciting,

more alive!!!

more challenging . . .

more dangerous . . .

more thrilling!!!

A life of safety and comfort is also a dull, boring life.

Indoor cats suffer from boredom which can leads to lack of exercise and over-eating, as well as dulling-down their powerful, sensitive sensory system.  After all, there’s no need to hunt with that food dish sitting around.   All in all, this leads to unhealthy, fat, and bored cats, and the more intelligent the cat, the more deadly the boredom.

Yes, intelligence requires sensory stimulation, and also exercise.

Have you ever seen a cat outside?  It’s eyes, ears, whiskers, tail – every part of that cat is on the alert, not just for possible prey or predators, but for play, too!

What an injustice we’ve done to our cats by keeping them confined indoors.

Still, I’m not about to open the door and allow a naive, innocent kitten to run outside into a world with only her instincts and no training whatsoever.  Mother cats who live outside DO teach their youngsters how to hunt and how to be safe.  There’s no experienced adult teacher available to teach Starlight.

So since I can’t get another kitten right now, as that would be grossly unfair to my to older beauties, I keep trying to find toys and other things to interest Starlight.  Perhaps I’ve found a piece of the answer?

Where's Daisy hiding?

Where’s Daisy hiding?

 

How tragic that I have to get my kitten a stuffed toy to play with, but how wonderful that she has taken to this little Gund kitten.

Yes, cats live longer, duller lives when we keep them inside.  There is no way we can replace the sensory input of the outdoor world that their eyes, ears, whiskers, and noses are designed for.

It’s hard work keeping Starlight active, exercised, and intelligent.

Found her!

Found her!

 

Wrestling Match

Wrestling Match

 

Got Your Tail.

 

Your ears are cute.

Your ears are cute.

 

And what does Starlight think of her new playmate?

STARLIGHT:

“I know Daisy isn’t a real cat.  I named her Daisy myself.  I know she isn’t real because she doesn’t bite me back or try to kick me or run around.  She doesn’t taste real when I bite her.   But she’s fun to play with, especially as I can’t seem to get Violet to play with me.”

Come on, Violet. Let's play.

Come on, Violet. Let’s play.

What’s a kitten to do?

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7 Comments

  1. Ali

    Hi Nedda,
    I live in another country. The only danger to our cats are traffic, dogs and poison. Our family of dogs and cats go out together sometimes or lie together in the garden sunning themselves. Sometimes when the dogs have been out for a walk the cats will run up the street to greet them, I love to see this.
    I noticed in one of your other blogs recently, you’d had a bear at your back door so was wondering what other dangers are lurking out there for Sarlight?

    Reply
    • Nedda

      Hi, Ali,

      Well, for starters, we have foxes, wild dog or coyote-dog packs in the fields behind my house, racoons, foxes, and hawks. All of these animals are far more dangerous to cats than the bears because bears won’t eat cats – are more likely to swat them and injure them. The hawks, foxes, and dogs or coy-dogs will eat them. Not sure about the racoons, but a fight with a raccoon can badly injure or even kill a cat.

      We also have bobcats around and even cougars, although the authorities aren’t admitting to the latter. The variety and quantity of predators in the area are growing, which is from one perspective a good thing. However, unless a cat knows the dangers and knows how to protect itself, it’s really dangerous out there.

      In nearby states like Rhode Island there are fisher cats, which aren’t really cats, but are ferocious predators who hunt for fish in ponds and streams and rivers. These guys are deadly to cats – they’re larger than domestic cats and very quick and fierce.

      Hattie, the feral cat who decided to live underneath the porch of my house, has been out there a long time (about 14 years) and survives primarily by hiding and being very, very fast. Even so, she has sometimes shown up injured. It’s quite unusual for a cat to survive this long outside, but I think part of the reason is that she’s found a home with me because I feed her once a day.

      Starlight is fast, but wouldn’t know to hide or even to plan her adventures so that she’d know all the easily available hiding places. She thinks everyone is her friend.

      Reply
      • Ali

        Oh my god, didn’t realise you had so many preditors, Daisy sounds like a much safer option. Not sure I’d be leaving the house either.
        We have foxes too but I’ve seen the local cats and foxes sitting around together in groups, almost as if they were talking among themselves and all looking very relaxed.
        Love the name Starlight picked for her new toy.

        Reply
        • Nedda

          I’m not sure it was a good idea to name the toy. Calling it a name like Daisy almost gives it a personality and makes me concerned that it’s unable to defend itself. It was my idea to name it, and Starlight chose the name, but I wish now we had just called it a toy. Aren’t we humans silly?

          I do think that some stuffed toys do develop personalities and feelings, kind of like Winnie the Pooh.

          Yesterday I sat on the floor and made Daisy move around to play with Starlight. Starlight was fascinated, until Daisy jumped on her. That was NOT acceptable to Starlight, who was totally put off by the experience. Now I wonder how she would take it if another cat were to initiate play. Violet and Sakhara never jump on her, although Sakhara will play a swat game with her if Starlight shows respect by lying upside down with her stomach exposed while they do it.

          Reply
  2. Ali

    Starlight sounds like a right little softy, how gorgeous. I’m sure she will recover from being pounced on by Daisy.

    I know what you mean about toys having a personality. We have a foster dog staying here who plays with Santy and Octopus. They get shook about and tossed into the air on a daily basis. I had to convince myself that the toys liked it because I felt sorry for them!

    Wouldn’t it be good if someone had an old barn to fit out with cat climbing frames and toys. Then people could take the cats to it for play days. Or perhaps roof gardens for cats! Ever thought about redesigning your roof?

    Reply
    • Nedda

      I’ve seen cat climbing structures created inside houses so that they can walk along near the ceilings and climb up and down and have resting places at various levels. The only issue I would have with that is that sometimes we need to catch a cat and if the cat climbs up when you need to catch her, you’ll never be able to do get the cat down! Those structures are not sold pre-made. I think you have to find someone who loves cats and would be willing to design and build one to fit into your house. 🙂

      Reply
  3. Doug Hagens

    I like Starlight. She seems like a fun cat!

    Reply

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