Indecision and cats

Kamikaze Catwalk

Tessa here. Mom was so happy when she read all your compliments on our Catwalk. She sure did a good job, BUT I want to point out that I’m the chief designer!

Here’s Mom’s original version: two wall shelves, connected with some sort of weird bridge. Kajsa was very interested. Many of you know that we call her the Queen of Indecision as she’s very careful and needs a lot of time to make up her mind.

This picture is Kajsa in a nutshell: she stands on 3 legs, moving one foreleg forward, pretending to take the next step…

… only to take her paw back.

And forward. And back. And forward. And maybe, or maybe not, go one step. She was standing there for over an hour, moving her foreleg back and forth, until she decided that it’s not safe to walk on this bridge. At least for now. After a small break, she can continue with her decision-making progress for another hour.

Our human doesn’t take Kajsa’s indecision issues seriously as Kajsa always needs a lot of time to make up her mind. When she finally left the lower shelf, it was my turn to inspect Mom’s work. (Sigh. It’s not only our human who’s running out of patience when it gets to indecisive cats!) I had a look at the bridge, put 1 foot on it, and knew immediately that it won’t carry me. I left. Done.

When Mom saw me turning away, she knew that she’d have to come up with a different solution. So here’s what you saw yesterday: 3 wall shelves.

What did I say? I’m the chief designer! Ok, Mom frames it slightly differently, “if kamikaze cat is concerned about the Laws of Physics, it has to be really dangerous”, but the result is the same. I’m the chief designer. Now, where’s my paycheck?

 

Advice wanted: what to do with Lady Indecision?

Warning: long text for a short question, hehe.

It’s been over a year since we moved from a semi-detached house with a garden to an apartment building. Don’t get confused, we moved this spring again, but our current place is quite alike the former apartment house.

Kajsa hasn’t been outside ever since we left the single-family house. Why? Well, she never made it to the groundplan because she couldn’t make up her mind in the staircase (the house has no elevator). I admit that I often run short of patience; I normally waited for 15 minutes (felt like hours) before I gave up. However, lack of patience was not the reason we never got to the first floor. One day, we were for over an hour in the staircase, but then some neighbor came home and Kajsa fled to our apartment. It’s actually a miracle that we had the staircase for ourselves for over an hour. I figured that unless I go out with Kajsa in the middle of the night (when all neighbors are sleeping), we’ll never ever come to the next stop that requires heavy thinking: the front door. Sigh.

Tessa has been out with me several times, and Kajsa knows where we are because she watched us from the window. I was nevertheless uncertain whether she actually understands what is waiting for her beyond the d**** staircase. I carried her twice to the transparent front door, thinking that she may get out when she sees the park behind our house. Well. She was interested but her indecision required so much time that our neighbors decided for her: she runs in panic to our apartment as soon as someone else is in the staircase.

There’s another problem here: when she’s running up the stairs, she’s way faster than me which in turn multiplies her anxiety because the leash is stopping her. As a result, she’s now afraid of the leash. Sigh.

Some weeks ago, I decided to give it a last try: I carried her all the way out. Don’t get me wrong – it’s of course fine if Kajsa doesn’t want to go out. Thing is, she wants to go out, but her indecision makes it impossible to ever get to this point. She was really mad at me in the staircase, she hissed, tried to escape and started growling like a very dangerous dog. However, once we were in the park, she actually loved being outside.

She wasn’t hiding, but got up to have a better view. She was really exploring, went way longer than Tessa and tried to chase birds. After 1,5 hours (!) she took a break. Can’t really see a very unhappy panicky cat on this picture either.

So what to do with our Queen of Indecision? We had the same ride the next time we went out. A crazy cat fearing for her life in the staircase, and a very happy cat outside.

Now I’m the one with an indecision issue. Shall I continue forcing her out? I’m feeling like a very bad person in the staircase, but I also feel like doing the right thing once we’re in the park.

 

Summary: she’s very afraid and totally crazy while I carry her out. Once we’re outside, she’s very happy. We’ll never get to the point that she slowly gets herself out because she needs too much time: we’d need at least 5 hours until we’re outside, and we’ll never have the staircase to ourselves for such a long time. When a neighbor is in the staircase, she goes crazy. So there’s no other way than carrying her out.

What would you do?

 

Tail Index

The great thing about our catio is that Kajsa can celebrate her in-or-out indecision for hours because Mom doesn’t get annoyed – at least as long as it’s not too cold.

Over the last weeks, Kajsa elaborated different stages in her decision-making process: here she’s come quite far, but part of her tail is still inside!

 

Indecision saved the cat

So what was Kajsa’s reaction to Tessa’s adventure? Of course she had to inspect this very compelling pile of banana boxes, too.

Trouble is – we call her Queen of Indecision for a reason… Will she or will she not follow Tessa’s lead?

Watch the video on YouTube if the embedded video doesn’t work.

 

Cat versus human logic

Okay, we do admit that Mom made a great effort to catify our balcony, but keep in mind that she wanted to build a cuboid. We only demanded free access to the balcony, nothing more.

She also needs to become more efficient; it took her two days to build the cube. Way too long! Indeed, Kajsa and I were not satisfied. Mom took this picture while she was “working” on the balcony and saw two impatient cats through the window.

Don’t really understand how she had the nerves to take pictures – shouldn’t she spent all her time on her work? Would she play with her smart phone if her boss supervised her at work? Certainly not. Bah.

However, we were thrilled when she finally opened the balcony door! Kajsa, our Queen of Indecision stood the first hour on three legs in the living room holding the fourth paw through the door frame. The important decision “in or out” always requires a very long working process.

I again was very excited about exploring the world from our balcony. So many new perspectives and views! So I spent the entire evening on the window sill, observing the living room through the balcony window.

Can’t really understand why Mom got so annoyed. She normally complains that we ignore things she does for us. So here we were, on the window sill and in the door frame, exploring the world, appreciating our new freedom and her hard work, but she was still frustrated ?!?

Turned out that she wanted us to look at something else than the living room and the door frame. Human logic … wasn’t it her who enjoyed observing us in the living room earlier that day? And doesn’t she always stress that we’ve to be careful when exploring new places? So what is wrong with Kajsa’s careful decision-making process and me observing the living room?  Sigh.

 

 

Should I stay or should I go

Oh, in case you were wondering why I only showed pictures of Tessa yesterday: Kajsa spends most of her outside time on the doorstep, trying to decide whether she wants to go out. She needed about 30 minutes from the first to the last picture on this post.

cat has difficulties to decide if she wants to go out

She usually stands on three legs with her 4th paw in the air, uncertain if she wants to complete this step or turn around and go inside.

cat and indecision

cat can't decide

cats are poor decision-makers

cats can't decide what they want

Although Kajsa drives me crazy with her indecision, I also appreciate her slow approach: she never manages to go on “smaller excursions” of her own, in the opposite to a certain long-haired cat.

mommy nov2015

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