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Life in the Cat House



I have sore feet. It’s not the kind of sore you get from hiking a hundred miles. It’s not the kind of sore you get from wearing new shoes that are not broken in yet. It’s the kind of sore you get when your feet are under steady attack from a feisty kitten.

Our kitten, Amelia Jane, loves human feet, especially bare ones. I sometimes go around the house barefoot and that presents her with opportunities to indulge in her favorite sport. When I get up in the morning and put my feet on the floor, there she is. If I am lounging in my recliner with no shoes on and get up to walk to the kitchen for a cup of coffee, every step involves avoiding tripping over a ball of fuzz that seems to come from all sides at once.

I suppose from the eye level of a kitten, feet are about all that can be seen of a person, so that’s what she tries to grab in order to gain attention. Except I don’t have to be walking around to attract her. I often sit with my feet curled up beside me, which sounds awkward but is actually very comfortable. Amelia Jane is big enough now to get up in my chair, so no unprotected feet are safe.

Once she wears herself out trying to destroy my feet, she will sprawl over them for a nap. I am not sure if she does that because it’s comfortable or if she is trying to guard them because they are her treasure.

When she first came to our house, we put down a towel on the floor for her to sleep on. That worked for a few days until she discovered my house slippers. She selected the left one for her own and was tiny enough to fit in it when she took a nap. She eventually outgrew that nice fit, but didn’t want to give it up. She kept trying to stuff her body in the slipper until she was hanging over the sides. She managed to rip out some of the seams, making the slippers impossible for me to wear. I finally got a new pair and left the old ones for the kitten.

Eventually, she grew big enough to get up on the couch and abandoned the left slipper. The couch became her preferred sleeping spot until she grew more and could move from the couch to a lamp table and make the leap from there to my chair arm, and then onto my feet.

My wife, Vivian, doesn’t go barefoot as much as I do, which saves her from the bulk of the kitten’s foot assaults. The kitten does love to untie Vivian’s shoe laces or go for a ride on Vivian’s swinging foot. Amelia Jane will tackle feet with shoes, but she really prefers those that are bare.

She doesn’t try to hurt my feet. It’s all a game to her and it becomes more fun when I dance around and yelp. She appears to enjoy making me stumble, too.

She has since given up sleeping on the couch at night. She can get up on the bed now and wants to snuggle with a person. She gave both of us a test snuggle and seems to have settled on me, at least for now.

She is growing fast, but she is still very much a rowdy kitten.