Tuesday, December 30, 2008

If the cat is in the bathtub...

That must mean she wants a bath, right? Hmmm...

Poor Mabel. But if she didn't sit in the bathtub and whine to be watered, I probably would never have thought to give her a bath.

This is Mabel, a cat of many families.
Mabel has had an interesting life. She was rescued as a young cat - already declawed in front, and after a run-in with a car - by a young woman who later married the brother of one of T's sister's husbands. (I think that's right - would that be my brother-in-law, one family removed?) Anyway, Mabel lived with them, until they moved and couldn't take her. So she was sent to live with the husband's parents.

When my sister-in-law A and her husband L were married, Mabel went along as a house-warming cat. And she was happy enough with A & L until they moved to an apartment on the second floor. Being an indoor/outdoor cat by nature, Mabel started letting herself out via the screen on their second story bedroom window - not a good activity for a cat with no front claws.

But L's parent's couldn't take her back for whatever reason, so Mabel ended up with A's mom,V, my mother-in-law. Except that V's mini-dachshund Ginger did NOT like her. And tried to eat her whenever she ventured upstairs
from the basement. And Mabel, being a social creature, did not like living in the basement.

So at Christmas two years ago, Mabel came to live with us. She made the 7 1/2 hour trip complacently curled up on my down jacket in the back seat, emerging periodically to check that we still weren't willing to share any jerky with her. On arriving, she took great delight in tormenting poor Snowball, who was sure Mabel was going to eat her. For a year we woke to cats squawking and the scrabble of feet as cats lunged across us in the dark.

Eventually though, Mabel & Snowball came to an understanding, and they now nap on the bed together - not quite touching, but almost.

Mabel & Snowball
Back to the bath...
At some point among her previous residences, Mabel became accustomed to drinking from a dripping tap in the bathtub. So when she wants... well, pretty much anything, from food or water to her belly rubbed, Mabel sits in the tub and talks about it to anyone who will listen. She has a very extensive vocabulary.

And there's no place like a bathroom for captive audiences.

Occasionally, she gets herself trapped between the shower curtains while lying in wait. If the bathroom door is closed and she can't get in, she thumps on it with her back feet.

Sometimes she even sleeps in the tub so as not to miss an opportunity to demand that we turn the water on for her. (Even though the cat food and water is much more conveniently located in the kitchen!)

It's mildly entertaining, but...
Anyway, right now she's shedding, and a little dandruff-y despite frequent grooming on her part and regular brushing on mine. And hairballs are just nasty when coughed up on the floor for bare feet to find. So last night as I was brushing my teeth, there sat Mabel in the tub. Shedding. And whining - loudly - to have the water turned on. So I did.

I adjusted it nice and warm, and proceeded to shampoo her and use the showerhead (it's on a hose, so you can move it around) to rinse her off all squeaky clean.

Ordinarily, I wouldn't bath a cat
- they don't need it -
but I just purely couldn't resist.

Actually, she wasn't too fussed about her bath - I think the warm water and the massage while I lathered her felt good - but she didn't much care for being towel dried.

This morning, guess who
was sitting in the tub again.
I do wish I'd gotten pictures of her
all spikey-wet and drying carefully
between her toes with her little pink tongue!


buckpony said...

Thank goodness you were able to give poor Mabel a home! It sounds as if she was passed around enough. Too funny how she enjoys the bath tub!
Makes me miss my Molly kitty and all of our conversations.
What happened to the orange kitty that you found a few months ago?
Glad to hear Thunder wasn't hurt when you found him on the wrong side of the fence!
Hope all is well with you and your family. Maybe I'll have a chance to blog again one day soon. I am missing it!
Have a very Happy and Blessed New year.

BrownEyed Cowgirls said...

She is beautiful! Very nice of the family to keep her in the family even if she didn't get to stay long.

My daughter gives all of our cats baths. They have all gotten less impressed with them as they got older, but still tolerate them.

Anonymous said...

Mabel is gorgeous! And certainly is a resilient cat. I'll bet she has a huge personality. My Fabio is one of those Mr Personality types. He is beside me right now and must know that i am writing about him, because he just rolled and stretched and said, "Reow." I had to stop taking pictures of him because he was getting such a big head. He is a long haired sealpoint with turquoise eyes. And he knows that he is handsome, although he does like for us to say so in front of him.

SunnySD said...

Oh my, BECG - I can just picture those cats getting baths :)

Thanks, SMR! I'll pass you compliment on to Mabel, and I'm sure she'll appreciate it. Your boy sounds lovely - he's a Siamese? They have such expressive eyes, and what they're eyes can't tell you, they're usually more than happy to express vocally - lol!