For the forseeable future, instead of Fluffy Fridays, we’ll be getting updates on Athena instead. As I’m counting her age based on weeks at the moment, these will probably be at the weekend, and we’ll be talking about the development that happened in the previous seven days.
At the age of nine weeks, coupled with the fact she moved houses, there were a LOT of little connections being made in the little lady’s tiny brain. This has been characterised by bouts of very enthusiastic play behaviour (interestingly, most of it focussed around people, I think because the change in her circumstances at the start of the week made her keen for reassurance. Her favourite way to play is sit on someone’s lap and bat at her toys, or play fight with a person’s hand) and then deep sleeps (which she also prefers to do on someone’s lap). All in all, for a lady who was mostly hand reared I have to say she’s extremely well adjusted, if a little clingy.
Between 8-10 weeks, kittens go through something called a socialisation period – the things they experience this week, particularly people, will set their expectations up for the rest of their life. So I’ve been having guests around and making sure to do things like laundry, hoovering, hair drying, changing the bed linens, etc. I live in a busy tenement flat so she’s been hearing all sorts of household noises (her first siren made her eyes go VERY wide indeed).
The physiology and behaviour is all very interesting, but I thought this would be a cool opportunity to look at how a bond between a human and an animal develops. When will she do the things that are characteristics of my cats, when does she teach me the things she wants?
So in that vein, here are some of the more personal developments:
She’s a big cuddler, and really prefers to be close to your face. Today she’s discovered she can lie on the top of the sofa’s pillows and rest her head on my shoulder while gaming. This is the best place to be and she’ll purr very loudly.
She’s discovered the view outside the window, and was especially fascinated when the football crowds were walking past.
When she’s feeling insecure she hides in the bottom shelf of the TV stand, behind my basket of miscellaneous games controllers, DVDs and chargers. She has not quite figured out what her igloo bed is for.
She very quickly got into the habit of using her scratching tree and is only mildly confused by my rug which is of a similar material. Climbing the scratching tree to the top platform is how she shows off to guests.
Guests are awesome, they mean extra cuddles.
Bedtime is also awesome, because it opens up a whole new type of game to play (the crawl under the covers and tickle Jilly game – if one day I blog about the sad incident where I squashed the kitten, this will be the cause of it), but she’s beginning to think about sleeping in one of her beds as she becomes less reliant on me.
She’s not super amazing at cleaning herself and has a semi permanent gravy stain on her chin.
She thinks claw trimming is great fun.
Things I’d forgotten but quickly learned:
The dangerous way that kittens will feedback into the gaming loop where you can’t stop gaming because you’d move the kitten and that would be cruel.
The scratches all up and down your arm.
Being catted but also desperately hungry.