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October 8, 2007

Every Breath You Take

[Just a heads up- this might be a cat-heavy week on callalillie.]

As many of you might already know, the Lexacor household has been marred by feline unrest since the Merger of 2005. We've resolved the skirmishes for the most part, though it has resulted in us dividing the house in half. The Robettes rule the kitchen/dining area. Irving and Olive roost in the living room/sleeping area. They're happiest this way and we've acclimated accordingly, though we still dream of having them all coexist once more. Every once in a while we give it a try, though none of us are willing to risk the tufts of fur flying just yet.

So what better way to add to the situation by introducing another cat? Well, kidding. Sort of.

Meet kitty, the robot cat that breathes. She was given to us as a gift to help re-introduce our real felines. Apparently, if you rub the fur of one cat on her and put her near the others, it's supposed to help them get used to one another. The kicker? The thing BREATHES and kind of purrs.

We rubbed Olga's fur all over kitty and then stuck her in the living room. After some initial hissing on Olive's part, both she and Irving went on to their normal task of ignoring the world. We're pretty sure that the experiment failed, though we're going to continue to apply Robette fur to the breathing robot and then place her next to Olive when we can. Our guess is that we scarred Olive for live during the initial introduction two years ago, but we can always dream...

Did I mention that this fake cat breathes?

Oh, and Irving did make good use of the robot cat's bedding, even if he had some minor spatial misconceptions.

Posted by callalillie at October 8, 2007 6:59 AM | Feline Musings


Wait a minute! Dimitri has the breathing robot kitty! (Come to think of it, Dimitri's model bears a striking resemblance to Irving himself save, of course, for the flat underbelly and hemmoroid-like battery pack protrusion on the inorganic version.) Which makes me wonder ... Are these being marketed to children and households with sparring feline populations alike? I find something remotely unsettling, and wildly over-the-top capitalist, about that. Although, I must admit, that Dimsum does have a propensity towards manufactured-for-kitty products, case in point being the usurpation of Callie's mice from Saratoga. They remain as permanent passengers in a Tonka tow truck.

Posted by: erin at October 8, 2007 10:50 AM

Dimsum has one?? I find them so strange because you can't actually hug them (or even uncurl them). At first glance you expect it to be like a stuffed animal. Our is heavy as sin.

I think Irving has a hemorrhoid-like protrusion, too.

Posted by: corie at October 8, 2007 10:55 AM

They are marketed to anyone who has a need for them.

Regarding the Lexcore's "Robot Cat" he was sent with the hope that he would be a peace maker for the Lexcore cat wars.

Our Vet is using one to sooth the way for the vets two fighting in house cats.

Posted by: petrie at October 8, 2007 1:12 PM

I hope it works, but I've gotta share my gut reaction: that is so weird. Next it will be a fake breathing baby to help kids get over sibling rivalry... ;-)

okay, that was a grosser idea than I initially thought.

Posted by: ms. frizzle at October 8, 2007 1:50 PM

i'm dealing with an even screwier problem: cat is jealous of boyfriend. she won't let him in certain rooms, and lies by the door to stop him. when he touches me, she lunges at him. it's not pretty

Posted by: alyssa at October 8, 2007 5:40 PM

This is hilarious!!! I wonder what my cats would think of it. Given their intermittent dysfunctional moments, I would be curious to see how they would react.

Posted by: brklynstories at October 8, 2007 8:34 PM

Olive has the look of "You're kidding me, right?" I do like how Irving has taken over the little bed.

Posted by: Divaah46 at October 8, 2007 8:39 PM

Olive spends a lot of time sniffing it. Irving likes to lay up against it. Even if it doesn't achieve it's intended purpose, I say at least it's giving them a little comfort :)

Posted by: corie at October 8, 2007 9:01 PM

I'm pretty sure I saw the suggestion here before, but we had some small success with the Feliway plug-in things. We're a 4 cat household, with 1 cat who gets picked on by everyone (and also has bathroom issues [bathroom issues appeared long before the current crop of cat residents existed]). After about 2 weeks of using 2 Feliway plug ins, 1 in the bedroom where we all sleep, and 1 in the living room, there was a noticable decline in aggression. After 4 weeks, there was even an improvement in bathroom issues. At 5 weeks, everything went back to the way it was because I forgot to replace the refill thingys. We're now about 7 months into using them (consistently) and while there are still hissy fits, there has been almost no full-on fighting. So for our particular feline crew, the Feliway seems to be working.

Posted by: Andrea at October 9, 2007 11:38 AM

After googling and reading about the Feliway things that Andrea mentioned above, I think you should try those. We have had to move our senior cat (age 15) to our other house because the two junior cats (brother, age 4) suddently started bullying her. It was so bad that she hid under our bed 24/7 and wouldn't even come out to eat or drinking. Too bad I didn't know about Feliway at that time. We like having her at that house when we spend time there so I don't think we will change the status quo, but I'm keeping Feliway in mind for any future problems.

Posted by: kmkat at October 9, 2007 1:00 PM

We tried Feliway many just didn't work for our cats. The two bigger cats were just incredibly aggressive toward Olive- and at a certain point, that behavior, on both sides, became somewhat ingrained. The larger cats aren't as aggressive anymore, however Olive has pretty much been scarred by it.

Posted by: corie at October 9, 2007 1:05 PM

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