If you’ve owned many cats, you know what happens when you return from the briefest of vacays. You rush in, still clutching your measly bag of airline pretzels, and hug Mrs. Cat long and tight. “Oh cookie-wookie, Mommy missed her wittle kitten-witten.” You plant smooches all over her head, and you hope she stops looking bored very soon.
This aloofness (or stand-offishness or abject hostility) is known as POST-VACAY CAT-SNUBBING. Your fickle feline has a definite talent for punishing anyone who dares leave her in the care of that neighbor kid who smells like Dachshunds. Wet Dachshunds.
First Mrs. Cat makes it perfectly clear that she is butt-hurt and it’s all your fault. At this point your furry friend does one of three things: She either stands across the room looking daggers at you, refuses to eat her regular food and demands fresh-caught wild salmon fillets or she throws up in your shoes. If your cat does all three then you have either been living on a Greek island for the past few months, had neck surgery with complications or just didn’t get your shoes put away in time to avoid projectile vomiting.
Next, Mrs. Cat may try to blackmail you, by demanding you chew the salmon before you feed it to her or by withholding purring for a week. She will snub her usual favorite spot on your laptop computer and instead camp out in a cardboard box. Cats generally get this sit-in (box) idea from watching all the Occupy protests, but like any feline, will of course think it was her idea and those protesters stole it. If your cat does NOT act like a cold fish after you’ve been gone, then it’s highly likely that she has a more dastardly plan.
This plan will entail your cat enjoy watching you plead with her. “Oh Mrs. Cat! How I have wronged thee! I promise I will never ever leave you with Dachshund Boy again!” To which your kitty will raise her nose, shake her back paw and march right over to the window to watch those birds you keep denying her.
Like Henri, your cat will play the victim for several days following your return. You will hear caterwauling all night, become the object of derision by day and feel the cold cold shoulder of rejection every moment in-between. If you are smart, you will NEVER EVER take another vacay as long as you live. And, oh. Don’t forget to hide your shoes.