Matthew Warner

My Office is My Cat’s Toilet

Okay, here’s the first ramble, and this will prove to you that I’m not going to use this blog for ever more glamorous self-promotion.

My office is my cat’s toilet.

I have three litter boxes in my office: two open-air ones in the corner by the furnace, and one covered one in the opposite corner. I keep them impeccable, immaculate, and because of Deena’s pregnancy it’s been my sole responsibility all year. I scoop the litter every day, and I completely change the litter in all three boxes twice a month.

Except, we have three cats, and maybe that’s the problem. Scotch, a girl, is a 12-year-old longhair with, shall we say, a sensitive stomach. Moody is a 5-year-old shorthair who is the specimen of feline physical perfection if not necessarily the paragon of mental stability. I never would have thought a cat could be OCD until I met him. And Percy, our 2-year-old shorthair, well, Percy . . .

Percy is the Devil.

He’s also an outstanding hunter. He started with insects, then moved up to field mice, then to large bunny rabbits, and peaked out on squirrels. The progression of ever larger prey led us to nervously joke that one day he would bring us a small child. Like many wild animals, he prefers to bring his prey inside the house and down into the basement — where my office is — to eat them or let them loose. I prefer it when he eats them, because then all I have to clean up is a pile of feathers or an intact liver. When he doesn’t eat them, many hours of “fun” ensue as we chase maimed or perfectly healthy wildlife through the house. Recently, we did battle with a squirrel who lived in my office’s suspended ceiling for three days.

But the most frustrating part about Percy’s behavoir is that nearly every day he takes a tremendous shit in the middle of my floor. Sometimes, he’ll take it less than a foot away from the litter box, as if to show me who’s boss. (This is what cat owners call “thinking outside of the box.”)

What can I do, short of using a staple gun to permanently close his anus? Really. Do any of you cat lovers have a suggestion?