Camping In The Kitchen

Scout has a darn good life but he’s been experiencing some anxiety whenever I leave home. An act as simple as running out to the compost bin is worrisome to him. Leaving for work is a traumatic event every single day.

This is a relatively new development, along with a handful of other behaviors that I hope are just part of a phase – like the terrible twos.

I’m trying to help him through this phase as much as possible. Part of that simply means keeping him entertained with active playtime, lots of toys and plenty of windows to sit in and watch birds.

My home currently looks like a bunch of cats had a frat party – there are toys everywhere.

A pal from work gave him a new favorite toy for Christmas – a tent that’s just his size. Technically, it was from Ben’s cat Casper but someone had to deliver the package!

Scout loves his tent and always keeps it stocked with mousies and jingley bells. It’s great for play, for naps and for hanging out while I cook.

And while he drags his shark tunnel all over the house, the tent isn’t allowed to leave the kitchen. Don’t ask. That’s just where it lives and it’s non negotiable.

While it’s a little annoying walking around all his stuff, who could say no to this little face?

Leaving Scout For Adventure

Scout did better while I was gone this last trip. He suffered severe separation anxiety during my late summer western vacation and I wasn’t sure how he would do with being left again but was pleasantly surprised with the results.

This time, he was nice to my mother for the first couple of days and turned a bit mean toward the end.

He isn’t a bad cat but clearly was worried I wasn’t coming back and maybe just a little impatient from all the waiting.

He was the sweetest little boy when I came home. He greeted me at the door, happy to be held, and purring while nuzzling up against my neck and face. This lasted approximately ninety seconds before he turned angry and started biting my hands.

He was upset and this was the only way he knew how to express his anger, fear and sadness. So I let him go at it for a minute before offering my him a toy in exchange for my hands.

Afterward, he had a little snack and, belly full, curled up in his chair by the window for a nap while I did chores.

All was right with the world.

When he woke up, life went on and neither of us spoke another word of my irresponsible disappearance.

I’m hoping it continues to get easier for him and suspect that it will. It has to be hard to be a little animal, a creature of habit who doesn’t understand why his human mom disappears.

I wish there was a way to tell him that, no matter what, I will always come back for him. Since there isn’t a way to tell him, I’ll just have to keep showing him.

Want to read about how Scout did when I took my western adventure? Click here.