Because Pete is very relaxed about the concept of going out and doing exercise, his claws have got very long, and they’re very sharp. And when he digs them into my leg, they’re very sore. I’ve tried to contact some of the mobile groomers in Edinburgh, but they’re as relaxed about answering queries as Pete is about going out. So today a friend gave us a lift and we went to the Groom Room at Pets at Home (Fort Kinnaird).
There’s no need to make an appointment for nail trimming for cats, so we just turned up. Poor Pete; he really doesn’t like travelling in cars and he was quite vocal in his protests. He perked up once we got into Pets at Home – all those live tasty snacks in cages for him to look at. The groomers had a couple of dogs being groomed when we arrived, but they moved them into another room for minimum stress and disruption while Pete was there. The groomer asked if I wanted to hold Pete, but I didn’t think he’d let me – he won’t let me touch his feet or hold him upside down and I didn’t think he’d cooperate for me. So she got another groomer to help and asked me to leave the room to reduce Pete’s anxiety. I stood outside, feeling like a parent on their child’s first day at nursery. I had a little look round but then moved so I could see what was going on. One of the staff was holding Pete up so that his feet were reachable, and the other one was clipping his nails. It was done very quickly, and when the staff saw me watching they mouthed that he was fine. Once it was done I went back in and we got him back into his carrier. They said he’d been good as gold, and the thick leather gauntlets on the bench hadn’t been needed at all. One of his back nails looks like it’s been pulled out (probably when he slid down the shelves) but it’s growing in at the right angle and she said it probably doesn’t need the attentions of a vet. £8 for all his nails to be clipped, with no drama and no bloodshed. He didn’t like the journey back much either, and he’s ignored me all day, but it was a good service and I’d happily take him back there next time.
Just after we got back, the post arrived, which included his new toy. The Feather Frenzy Cat Toy is from the same people who made Da Bird. It’s a long flexible plastic wand (come tightly coiled in the envelope so be careful as you open it or it’ll whack you in the face) with a string attached. The string has a carabiner clip on the other end, so you can attach different toys. When I ordered the toy, I also ordered the mouse attachment, but today Pete and I have just used the standard feather toy.
The feather toy has a couple of ethically-sourced pheasant and turkey marabou feathers attached so that when you wiggle the wand, the toy flutters and whirs. Pete was moping on the floor when I unpackaged it but within a second of me setting it up he was hunting it. He was in a frenzy of predatory lust, eyes dilated, tail thrashing, stalking and running and leaping and pouncing, and not getting bored of it at all. He’s had two 20 minute sessions and a 10 minute session with it today and I’ve never seen him so intent on a toy. I had intended to let him catch it a few times to prevent frustration and mimic natural behaviour, but he’s so quick he caught it even when I didn’t want him to. And then he kept the feather end in his mouth and ran into the house to eat his catch by his dish, with me running along behind him still holding onto the wand. I think I’ve done as much running after the toy as he has! It took him a few catches to work out it’s not actually edible and once he’d worked that out, he was better at letting me take it off him to start the game again. I’m delighted with how much interest he’s showing in it (crazed, murderous interest) and I hope I can ration it to maintain his interest while giving him more exercise. Really good toy, highly recommended.