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November 18, 2004

Popcorn feet and other tidbits.

When you just go around reading animal groups on the Internets, sometimes you get some really weird stuff. Not long after we acquired Max, I was reading some posts on some site or other geared toward people who have Pomeranians, and this woman posted the rather embarrassing revelation that her dog's feet smelled like popcorn.

I laughed my ass half off over that, and I never thought any more about it.

Then, one night, I was lying on the sofa and Max jumped up there with me. So I smelled his foot. You know what? The sucker's feet do, in fact, smell like popcorn. I suppose it has to do with the sweat glands in a dog's foot, and it's likely most dogs' feet smell like that. And here I was laughing at that poor woman when she was absolutely right.

Here's a question -- and I admit I've seen it before, on the 'cat groups' -- why does the diameter of a cat's nether eye have no apparent connection with the size of what's extruded through it? Tink's anus is the size of an asterisk, but her turds are nearly as big around as the dog's. Doodle poops bird droppings, and hers is the size of a nickel.

And where are they trying to dig to, when they dig around in a perfectly clean litter box? They know the litter box is finite, and yet Gord and Squeek, especially, will root around in there as if they were digging for gold.

I wondered about Doodle, but I know why she does it -- when we first got her, we were having a battle with Poop Spiders. If I recall correctly, they were wolf spiders -- the brown ones with the little black lozenges on their backs, the ones that start out small but can get to be the size of a tarantula if they find a good hideout and plenty of food. All's I know is, they were darned persistent about hanging around in the litter boxes, and Doodle was on the case. She'd spend hours sitting in the bathroom waiting for one, then she'd hop in the litter box and beat it all around until its legs were gone.

I think, to be honest, the Poop Spiders were waiting around for ants or woodlice, both of which we see in the downstairs bathroom on occasion, but even woodlice and ants are smart enough to stay out of the litter boxes. Even if not for the cats, ants don't eat cat poop.

Every now and then, when she has access to the run, Doodle will still bring us in a wolf spider. They're usually partially dismembered and the legs they have left are ratted up into a knot. Wolf spiders are relatively harmless, as spiders go -- she doesn't seem much inclined to bring in any other kind, so either she knows that or wolf spiders are the only ones stupid enough not to get the hell out of the way when they see a cat coming.

What am I saying -- they were living in the litter box. Of course they're stupid.

Tink never brings us anything. She doesn't know how to hunt, she was too young when we brought her home. She'll play with an ant on the floor for hours, but never kill it -- just maim it so badly it drags its flattened abdomen around in a shallow, wobbly arc, with the two or three legs she's left it, until one of us crushes it and flushes it, or until another of the cats eats it.

Squeek, for her part, probably kills things -- but she doesn't bring them to us. Doodle, more than the others, brings her kills in and announces them to us. She used to kill the little rope from the monk-shaped Frangelico bottle and bring it to us, until we got the dog. Now, if she finds one, we're lucky if she can make it across the room before the dog has snatched it away from her to devour. We actually quit drinking Frangelico as much because Doodle couldn't kill the belt anymore as because we don't like Frangelico.

Posted by Melinda at November 18, 2004 11:16 PM


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