We’ve had Beau, our first cat, for several months now. He’s my first cat. While my family had a cat when I was a child, she kept to herself. Cricket was my mother’s cat. She did not like me or my brother at all. Beau likes me.
I know this because he kneads me.
I’ve learned quite a bit about cat behavior since adopting Beau. The kneading thing was a big surprise.
If I’m sitting in the leather chair in our library, a chair which has suffered some damage since Beau arrived, Beau will jump up on the arm of the chair and reach out to gently poke my face. Most of the time this is enough to get me to scratch him. Sometimes, I’ll present my hand to him and say “Shake” like I do with the dogs. He doesn’t shake with a paw, I’m told no cat will ever do this, but he does put his head down into my hand for a scratch which is pretty cute. If I can somehow get this on film, I think there is some potential to finally go viral.
After he has poked me, Beau will then put his fore paws on my stomach and begin to knead me. He sort of paces in place, lifting one foot, then the other, pressing into me each time like he is kneading a pile of dough. After I’m soft enough, I guess, he’ll then hop on and curl up for a nap. But sometimes the kneading continues even after he has curled up and begun purring.
Does your cat do this?
I was told that cats eat small amounts of food at a time but Beau tends to scarf his food down almost as quickly as a dog does. He takes a few breaks, but he’s basically eaten the bowl of food in a couple of minutes. Especially if it’s the canned stuff. He’ll clean his plate for canned food every time. We don’t leave food out for him all day long because the dogs will eat it which may be why B eau is such a dog-like eater.
Beau is still working things out with our two dogs. Neither one of them will approach him, but he’s still not leaving the library even if the dogs are out of the house. C.J. insists that this is okay. He says once Beau has given Clovis the scratch he’s destined to get, Clovis will leave him alone. Clovis is our Bassett who really just wants to play and can’t figure out why Beau is so stand-offish about it. Clovis is a three-year-old male. The other dog, Gabby is a small mutt, smaller than Beau by just a bit. She keeps Beau on his guard but she has no interest in the cat as a playmate.
One of Beau’s favorite things is to have his belly scratched. If you start, he’ll roll over for you, he likes it so much, almost all the way over onto his back the way a dog does.
Finally, I do want to mention the miracle of the litter box. How can science explain this phenomenon. Clean it once a day, keep it sufficiently filled, and Beau uses it every time, did so right from the start. As a nearly life long dog owner, I still can’t get over the litter box.
It’s a wonder.