Guest Alex Erickson: Troublesome (but Loveable) Felines

By Liz, happy to welcome another Maine coon cat (and all other kinds of cats) lover to the blog! Alex Erickson is here today to talk about how his complicated relationship with his cats…and it’s so hilariously on point! Enjoy!

Luna says “keep working!”

My cats are jerks.

I mean that in the nicest way. They are family. I wouldn’t trade them for anything.

But man, can they ever get on your nerves.

Want to know where I get inspiration for the zany things animals do in my books? Look no further.

While no dogs live here, that doesn’t mean they aren’t welcome to visit. Rodents have lived within these walls, but they lived high-risk lives with a cat who has managed to knock an entire wing of a gerbil cage from its moorings, sending plastic ball and terrified rodent flying across the room. The little guy was rescued, but the incident gave him a few gray hairs.

So, my cats. All of them have their own . . . quirks? Malfunctions? Whatever. They have issues.

Loki

Loki, the biggest and oldest of the three, is also the calmest. Sure, if a piece of paper comes anywhere near him, it will soon find a cat butt sitting upon it. And yeah, he will intentionally trip you or grab your arm if he thinks he can get you to drop the cat treats or deli sliced ham you’re carrying. And Christmas trees? Do I need to comment on that at all? He also has a tendency to sit outside the bedroom at two in the morning, singing the song of his people in a series of “mrroooowwwwws” that would make anyone weep. Especially since you’re now awake.

Luna as a kitten

Then there’s Luna. Recent health issues gave us a scare, but once she recovered, she went right back to her “I’m better than everyone” attitude. Not paying attention to her? Fine. She’ll just grab hold of your hair with her teeth and yank. Touch both sides of her face at the same time? Nope. A nip for you! Is it three hours before her scheduled dinner time? Best start demanding food and tearing up the rugs until someone takes pity on her!

And last, but most certainly not least, is Jinx. Jinx, Jinx, Jinx. I mean . . . ugh!

Jinx and Luna

Jinx is nothing but muscle—with a bit of a housecat paunch. He doesn’t look heavy, but he’s solid. When he steps on you, you know it. And boy, does he ever love to trample you. It starts at around one in the morning. Then happens nearly every hour on the hour, and is accompanied by him getting into your face and meowing like he’s afraid you aren’t going to wake up and acknowledge him. He doesn’t really want pet. Or fed. He just doesn’t want to be awake by himself. Once you’re sufficiently roused and confused as to why you’re awake, with bruises on your side or stomach where he stomped on you, he nods to himself, jumps down, and finds someone else to wake up. And don’t get me started on how often he’ll jump onto the table, just to sit and look at you, when he knows he’s not supposed to be up there.

But it’s not just the humans he must annoy. Another cat needs to go to the vet? Well, now they’re getting hissed at for the next week. Another cat walks by him? ATTACK! Looks at him? ATTACK! Dares to sleep in his vicinity? ATTACK!

Now, he isn’t vicious. He’s still young, and maybe once he gets a little older, he’ll calm down. But for now, sleep, for cats and humans alike, is unobtainable.

Then there are the kitties that had come before. Georgie and Sissy were afraid of people, and Sissy flat out refused to come out from her hiding place for anyone, family included. Valkyrie, with her busted hip, was the bully before Jinx took on that role. She had the piston-like stride down pat. And Misfit . . . If you ever read my Bookstore Café series, you know what he was like. If you so much as thought about resting an arm or a hand on him when he slept, the trap would spring shut and blood would be spilled.

So, yes, my cats can be jerks, but I love them anyway. They give me countless hours of inspiration I can use in all of my books, including Dial ‘M’ for Maine Coon, which features a cat much like my own Loki.

What kind of quirks do your pets exhibit? What makes them, well, them? What gives you gray hairs or cuts and scratches that you wear like badges of honor? My kitties can’t be the only troublemakers out there.

Can they?

Alex Erickson is the author of the Bookstore Café and the Furever Pets mysteries. He’s a gamer, animal lover, and a not so good guitar player. You can find him online at https://alexericksonbooks.com/ 

10 Thoughts

  1. I get walked on nightly. Just as one bunch of scratches is healed I end up with new ones. Belle loves to wake me at 4am because she thinks she starving but I make her wait. The boys Barnabas and Fella enjoy wrestling every morning while I am trying to enjoy my coffee.

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  2. Hysterical! Right now I have Jenny (mother) Piper and Cub (kittens). They were dumped in my yard on Thanksgiving week and since we only had five others at the time, we figured what’s a few more. Piper and Cub are inseparable and united in their hatred of their mother. Yes, we finally had to declare them the downstairs cats, Jenny is the upstairs cat. It only took two trips to the vet to treat Jenny’s abscesses before that decision was made. Poor Jenny, she won’t fight back.

    Kitty Characters? Well – Starlight used to take our conure (small bird) for a ride on her back. When she’d had enough – she was in her 20s – she’d walk under a chair and the bird would perch on the rung. Freddy was a huge kitty, 20 pounds and all muscle. He was also a gentle giant who would fall asleep in his catnip. Missy loved all of her fellow cats, she considered them servants. Missy never groomed herself. Not her job. Zoe was our Maine Coon mix. She considered herself queen of all she surveyed and as long as others paid homage, she was happy. There were more, but you get the idea. Their personalities are distinct, and they leave giant pawprints on your heart.

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  3. My “badges of honor” are the fading bite marks. We had to let maniac kitten Ganesh go outside last spring. It was that or give him back to the rescue organization. We now can’t use most of our blinds because he ate the strings. Most of the houseplants got moved to rooms where he isn’t allowed. And more. But now when he’s in at night he’s sweet (mostly), and the rest of the time he comes and goes at will – which is what he was angling for all along, I think!

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  4. Oh my, I laughed at your cat stories (sorry)! My most recent black cats, Prince and Sheba, have passed away and I’m still too heartbroken to get any new ones, but Prince was a very solid pouncer and biter who would tolerate only a small amount of petting before he’d nip. My family always had cats and I do miss having a furrpot around. I will look for your books to read about the kitty adventures!

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  5. The cat stories are priceless. I have one that loves to get outside of our door also. We started locking her out in hopes of getting some sleep and she scratches at the door yelling very loudly. Good grief it’s horrid. lol
    The faces though are so innocent looking.
    Thanks for sharing.
    Enjoy the weekend.

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  6. Although we don’t share our home with a cat, are best friends have always had cats and we are always the godparents to those cats.

    As for us, we are owned by a 17 year old chihuahua named Snickerdoodle. They say as you as you mellow. Well Snickerdoodle must be doing it in reverse. As a pup he was a go with the flow fella. Now he’s more like that grumpy old man – do it my way, in my time and I slept all day so why do you need to sleep at night. He’s lost just about all his hearing and sight so any movement means something is out to get me and has to be met with anger. He might have lost a lot of things but he still has all his very sharp teeth and strong bite. He has this scratch my butt but don’t you dare touch my ears attitude and isn’t scared to let you know it. It’s amazing how fast he can go from oh that feels good to what the hey no you don’t. But all in all, we love the little fart and pray he has at least another 17 more years.

    Can’t wait for the opportunity to read “Dial ‘M’ for Maine Coon”. Love the cover! Although our chihuahua is black with white and brown, he so resembles the one on the cover – all innocence but once you get to know him you know better.
    2clowns at arkansas dot net

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  7. We’ve had so many cats that have had so many quirks, I would need a book to list them all. From staring at pookahs in corners, reading our magazines with their elbows, counting my nose hairs (I have to assume that was what she was doing), bringing us the tail and back feet of the leftover chipmunk that was dinner, to leaping from 3rd floor balconies to visit a neighbor, we’ve had the gamut of quirks. Love them all.

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  8. We have three cats. One cat (Daisy) has is so skittish she stays mostly in one room, the bathroom. She is very small for her age so the other cat (Luci) we brought home from the Humane Society intimidates her. The little one is beginning to stand up for herself. It is funny to see her growl and hiss at her brother (Fearless) and sister.

    Fearless is a lover. He is a happy go lucky cat that we rescued from outside. When he was a kitten in our backyard, he chased a full size raccoon and groundhog out of our yard. That is how he received his name. When I was able to work, he would sit on the front porch in the morning and walk me to the car. My husband would have to go with me to lift him out of the car so I could go to work. He would be on the porch waiting for me when I came home. He would run and greet me every night. There was no way that he was not going to get into the house.

    At this moment, Luci and Fearless are both laying on separate folding chairs next to my husband and my chair in the kitchen asleep. Thank you for letting me tell you about our three cats.

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