Rules for Housecats

The following was written by my cat, Sissy. So, I assume no responsibility for its contents.

Rules: Begin people training early. You will then have a smoothly running household. Humans need to know basic rules. They can be taught if you start early.

Do not allow doors to be closed in any room. To get a door opened, stand on your hind legs and hammer with your forepaws. Once the door is opened, it is not necessary to leave if you have chosen not to. When you have decided to go outdoors, if you’re allowed, and the door is opened for you, stand halfway and think about a few things. This is important, particularly during very cold weather or in the mosquito season.

If guests come by, determine which guests hate cats the most, rub against trouser legs, or select a fabric or color that contrasts well with your fur. For example, black wool clothing is best with white fur. If you can manage, sit on that lap. For a guest who professes to love cats, apply caution. They are appeasing the hosts. Act aloof with disdain; apply claws to stockings or a quick nip at the ankles.

For book readers, get between the face and the book; peer up as if checking to see if the human is alright. Or, lie across the book or computer. This will remind the worker that you are still around and must not be ignored. If subject is knitting, curl up and purr, quietly, on the lap of the knitter, reach out and hook the needles or yarn, whichever is closest. The knitter may attempt to distract you with a scrap of paper or string of yarn. Ignore it! The aim is to discontinue work. If the human is cooking, sit just behind the back of the feet where you will be stepped on. At this point, squeal loudly. This will prompt the human to pick you up and you will be consoled. This may prod the human to serve you with a dish of your favorite snack to keep you out of the way.

It is important to get enough sleep in the daytime so that you are fresh for nighttime frolics, like pretending to catch a non-existing mouse or be ‘King-of-the-Hill’ in your human’s bed. Try to keep the hours of 2 and 4 AM for such activity.

It is good practice to pretend that the food offered is unacceptable. On the other hand, complain loudly when your dish is empty. When they respond by bringing food to your dish, it is not necessary to eat it. Carefully, observe it, sniff it, and slowly walk away. This will show humans that you are not easily mollified. This can cause the human to consider better cuts of meat or higher grade canned food.

Mostly, do not feel hurt if you are being scolded for leaping onto the dinner table when guests are dining. Look like you believed you were invited but the invitation got lost. The idea is to convey the action as, “but, when I’m on the table at other times you don’t complain.” Pretend to be obedient by leaving the table. But, do not leave the area. Stand beside the chair of your human and look hurt and surprised. You could be rewarded with a chunk of meat as a well deserved apology.

Lastly, always accompany guests to the bathroom. It is not necessary to do anything. Just sit and stare. You will give notice to the guests that you are the main figure in this palace and remind them they are intruders.

If you feel an urge to throw up, quickly get to an oriental rug where the fancy pattern will disguise the evidence. If an oriental rug is not in place, a shag or a wall-to-wall will do. Avoid napping in special beds or baskets designated for you. Change your napping areas often and try to select your human’s favorite chair for your daytime naps. It will establish your domain.

If you follow the above rules you will be a happy captive as I have been for 986 days of my captivity. If the human living in the house seems discontented, don’t fret. Purr often and remain quietly aside for at least a week. Remember! Royalty before loyalty.


Frederick the Great’s 18th century dictum sums up America’s current geopolitical dilemma neatly.

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