I’ve told the tale of Zorro joining our household before but I’m not sure I have ever told about how smart he was. Here’s one story of his intelligence.
Zorro was a scratcher. I’ve known a lot of cats over the years (other people’s cats) and no one could scratch like Zorro. And he scratched everything: sofa, beds, tables, piano bench, speakers. Everything. I tried every technique you can think of to re-direct him. Multiple kitty scratching posts, catnip spray (to entice him to the posts), cans with pennies, squirt bottles, double-sided tape, aluminum foil, bitter apple spray. I even tried little shields that you put onto the kitty’s claws. Take it from me, don’t try this. You’ll get damaged doing it and within 24 hours, the kitty will have chewed half of them off.
I know that de-clawing a cat is an awful thing to do. I know exactly what they do and I know that many vets will not do the procedure. I had a long talk with my vet and as much as I loved Zorro, it was coming down to keeping Zorro without claws or having to find Zorro a new home. This was a terrible decision and I flip-flopped back and forth for over a month. But he was literally scratching his way through the house. The day I caught him scratching the piano leg (ignoring the kitty post that was 12” from him), I knew I had to act.
Suffice it to say that it was a rough surgery and he ended up staying at the vet two extra days so that they could keep him contained and quiet. After he got home, he limped for two weeks, breaking my heart with every step. I knew I was going straight to kitty-owner’s hell. Then one afternoon, I was standing in the kitchen and from where I was located, I could see Zorro up on the buffet in the dining room, but he didn’t see me. He jumped down and walked toward the kitchen with no limp whatsoever. As he crossed the threshold into the kitchen, he looked up and saw me; he immediately sat down and lifted up his “sore” paw. I snorted at him and told him he was busted; he must have heard my intonation or maybe he just knew the gig was up. He never limped again.
So all those folks who think cats aren’t smart because they can’t be trained like a dog, I say, you didn’t know Zorro!
Have you ever been scammed?