Skip to content

A Quick Update On Our CH Household

April 24, 2013

It’s only been four months since my little CH family moved into our new house, and it already feels like home.

bothIt’s been interesting to watch how the cats have adapted to the new place – things they like to do now, how they’ve overcome challenges, and the like.

Most notably, the biggest challenge was definitely the stairs. CG has taken to them like a pro, and Ellie has done her best, too. There have been a few incidents where Ellie has fallen down nearly our entire flight of carpeted stairs, but to our amazement, she has an unbreakable spirit and doesn’t let it her get it down. That said, I still have a tough time watching her climb up the stairs, simply because I don’t want to distract her and cause a fall.

The stairs have played a tremendous role in getting our cats in shape. For some reason, I had imagined that going up and down stairs every day would slim them down. On the contrary, the exercise has bulked them up! Ellie, who’s still on the smaller size, now has a strong core, which used to be like jelly! CG, too, has become more solid, and I’m glad he *loves* the stairs, otherwise he wouldn’t get too much exercise. (Maybe that’s why he loves them!)

You can only imagine our cats’ amazement when they learned that we don’t only have one flight of stairs, but two! The other, which is not carpeted, leads to the basement. CG was automatically intrigued, and I was automatically terrified.

One morning I woke up to find the basement door open (it can be easily opened if not latched properly) and found CG exploring down there. I escorted (carried) him upstairs, but I’ve since learned that he’s rather capable going down the stairs. It’s a tough line to walk, between allowing your cat to build his confidence/abilities and keeping him safe. Like with Ellie, I cringe, knowing that one day something will happen, but I really believe that him doing it on his own is a huge confidence builder. And I can’t deny him that.

sunThe basement is now one of his obsessions. He’ll beg (cry and paw at the door) to go down, so we try to give him opportunities when he’s not begging. I’m hoping it’ll change his behavior (cut back on the crying and pawing at the door), but to be honest, it’s nice to see him passionate about something.

The only thing I would change about our home (for our cats’ sake) would be to have more windows closer to the floor. On the first floor, it isn’t too bad, but all of the windows on the second floor are far too high for the cats (even with the aid of a cat tree). But they’re good sports about that.

We’ve placed our cat tree in our front living room window that looks out to our small garden and the street. Ellie, who maneuvers like a mountain climber to get to the top of the cat tree, absolutely loves it. Some mornings I’ll find her there, just watching the world go by.

For CG, the front window shows a bit too much activity – too many people walking by, scary cars, and the like. Fortunately, he’s a fan of looking out our dining room window, which looks out to our backyard (and the alley, which can sometimes be scary, too!). This is where we hope to put up a bird feeder this spring. I figure he could use a source of entertainment as well.

While the cats are still my little shadows (they follow me nearly everywhere constantly), our slightly larger home with more rooms has helped contribute to greater independence, I think. Now, instead of *always* being by my side, I’ll sometimes have to go look for one or both. It’s nice, because I feel like they’re finding enjoyment and pleasure in their own ways, without me.

backyardIt’s also been fun to watch where our cats’ favorite spots are. One of the small bedrooms faces the south, and gets excellent sun (when it’s sunny). This is the room we found the previous owner’s cat sunbathing in when we first looked at the place, so Matt and I agreed it would be my office. I expected the cats to spend the entire day lounging in the sun in that room, but they’ve proven me wrong.

They do love the sunbathing in my office, but they have other favorite spots, too. CG prefers sleeping in our bedroom, which also faces the south, most of his days. Ellie’s really a toss-up. Sometimes she sleeps in my office in a cat bed, other days she’s with CG. Some days I find her under our guest bed – just hanging out – or under the sink’s cabinet in the bathroom. I don’t know what she’s thinking, but she seems to enjoy it!

It’s been such a joy to go through this time with our cats, and I’m eager to see what happens next.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. April 24, 2013 9:26 am

    Poppie has yet to figure out that what goes up, must come down. He insists on coming up the stairs but HATES coming down. He wants to come up at 3 am when he realizes he’s all alone, including our other cat who is sleeping on my bed. He thumps like a lumberjack and falls onto doors in the hall making crashing noises that wake the dead. He hates to be picked up but I sweep him up and dump him on my bed to stop the noise. This is all new since we moved back to the US. Your cats seem to have adapted better to the new environment.

  2. Lauren Torggler permalink
    April 25, 2013 10:00 am

    So glad to hear they are doing well! I’m sure Ellie will master the stairs eventually, or close to it. It took Mimosa a while to figure out a “method” of coming down the stairs that works best for her. Obviously coming down the middle didn’t work since she had no support. She then tried hugging the wall for a long time, but now she does some crazy zig-zag pattern when she comes down the stairs, going from one wall to the other, back and forth, until she reaches the bottom. I don’t know why she does it, but it seems to work and keeps her from descending too quickly, which is usually when she takes a tumble. I always try to video or photograph her crazy habits, because they make us laugh later!

  3. Roz permalink
    April 29, 2013 11:52 pm

    Our mild CH girl, Stitch, just LOVES stairs, and has taught us to play Hide & Seek (where we either lie on our stomach on the top landing and offer her our fingers/hands to catch, or play a head-bobbing game with her.) She also does a zig-zag descent and sometimes takes a tumble, but like Ellie doesn’t let it bother her in the least. Depending on the day she can negotiate the stairs faster than her human housemates!

    • April 30, 2013 6:29 am

      That’s pretty impressive! It’s amazing how resilient they are. Sometimes after Ellie tumbles down, I go to give her a hug, but she just shakes it off and looks at me like “What?”. It’s definitely a good reminder that she’s tougher than I think!

  4. Lauren Torggler permalink
    May 7, 2013 8:27 am

    I 100% agree with your comment about the exercise bulking the cats up. When we adopted Mimosa she was about 7lbs and after a while, she averaged at about 8lbs. Last year, when I lived in a one-bedroom apt, I took her to the vet and she weighed 8.5lbs and they told me she was getting a little chubby around the middle, so we cut back and got more exercise, bringing her back down to about 8lbs. This Friday we went to vet and she weighed a whopping 9.5 pounds, which is HUGE for that little one. I was horrified at first, however, the vet thought she looked fantastic! When I took her out of the cage, the vet actually gasped – saying she looked completely different since last time she saw her – when she was a little scrawny thing. I never really noticed a change until I went back and looked at old videos/photos. That extra 1.5lbs must be all muscle, from going up the stairs and such, because she doesn’t look chubby at all and the vet didn’t think she needed to lose anything. Quite shocking, but impressive.

Leave a Reply to Janet Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: