May 25th, 2011


Sense of Smell Controls Behavior

Spelunker is a "nose" cat. Yesterday, as I was cleaning, I picked up both his tray and Jabberwock's, which sit on opposite sides of a waterer. When I set them back down, I refilled them and trilled my "come and get it" call.

Jabby, asleep behind my chair, did not stir. Spelunker wandered in from my bed, where he'd been sprawled in the sunlight. He yawned as he passed my chair.

Spelunker loves to raid Jabberwock's dish, and was strongly and repeatedly disciplined for that.

How strong is his motivation to eat only from HIS bowl?

As he lowered his head to eat, he HISSED!

I got up, reversed the two pans, and he chowed down contentedly, but briefly. He was really not hungry, just keeping up appearances.

I had evidently put the bowl Jabby uses in the spot where Spelunker's goes. They are both recycled, washed black trays, but are not identical... I never paid attention to the variation in shape, but it is easily spotted when one allows one's brain to register more detail than "black cat food tray"...

Forever hereafter, Spelunker gets the slightly shorter, but fatter one. Jabberwock gets the longer, scooped edge thiner one.

Care to explain THAT to an emergency replacement cleaning/caregiver, or why it matters?
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