“Mouse Hunt’s” funky synthesizer churns a chunka-a-chunk, bump, bump beat for a solid hour while a cartoon mouse darts across our 44-inch television screen–and SeaTac the cat is hooked. Really hooked. If I suddenly switch to the Food Network, he gives me the nastiest look and starts shaking. The withdrawal symptoms are strong. Very Strong.
“Nate, I’m worried about the cat. Should he be watching this much television? It’s like a drug. He screams at us until we put this video on.”
Nate takes a close look at our jacked up cat and says, “Maybe we should get a bird feeder and put it outside. It might be healthier for him.”
So, we stop by Lowe’s and pick up some hummingbird feeders, a couple of yard hooks, and feeding/nectar solution, which I swear is really grenadine. I try to convince Nate we could just use grenadine, but he’s not having it.
For weeks we had debated whether or not to get a hummingbird feeder. Nate had spotted a few of these kinds of birds in our backyard and, according to Seattle Audubon, our area draws in Anna’s Hummingbirds, which are commonly found year-round according to the “Bird Watch” website of the Seattle Audubon Society. Ever since we moved here from Ohio nearly two years ago, our cat has seemed bored and depressed. “Real cat TV”–or opening up the windows so that the cat can see into the yard–can help with boredom but, since we haven’t landscaped yet, not too many birds come around here, but that’s about to change.
The bird feeders are easy to install. We just shove the “hangers” into the ground in our backyard and clamp S-hooks into the slots on the top of the feeder. Finally, we pour the nectar in, which Seattle Audubon says should only contain a 1:4 ratio of sugar to water solution otherwise, the kidneys of the hummingbirds will be damaged.
While we wait for birds, I’ll share a few factoids about Anna’s Hummingbirds along with some SeaTac the Cat factoids for your enjoyment:
Anna’s Hummingbird Factoids: (From the Bird Web of the Seattle Audubon Society)
–Anna’s Hummingbirds are medium-size with a bronze green coloring above and a gray coloring below for both the males and the females. The heads of the males are red, while the females have green heads.
–Males perform a “flight dive” and follow it up with a “popping” noise, which apparently helps with mating.
SeaTac the Cat Factoids:
–SeaTac is a black domesticated cat we adopted from the Humane Society in Ohio. He came declawed, so we keep him indoors.
–Past and previous veterinarians have described him as “obese” right in front of him! They’ve explained to us that since he is not a baby puma, tiger, or cougar, there is no moment in his life where he should ever weigh close to 20 pounds, but we only feed him cat food–not people food and we follow the feeding instructions exactly. We believe then, that he is probably just a larger cat and, when we put him on a diet, he is only able to lose two pounds. In fact, when we adopted him the professionals at the Humane Society shelter had named him “Bubba,” which almost rhymes with “Blubber,” so we kind of think even they knew he is supposed to be on the larger side. However, we renamed him SeaTac, so he wouldn’t have to have a name reminiscent of “Blubber.”
–SeaTac has been to the airport that bears his name. We flew with him from Ohio on a Southwest plane. He is not impressed with the airport.
–He has been frisked by TSA agents. So has Nate. Both Nate and SeaTac have a mutual contempt for TSA agents.
–He has a long, luxurious tail, which gets him into trouble sometimes. After dinner, he likes to sit in Nate’s lap, while we’re still seated around the dining room table. Sometimes he stands up in Nate’s lap to turn around and get comfortable and the tail lands in the salad bowl with all of the salad dressing. I then chase SeaTac with a wipe cloth so that he doesn’t get dressing on the couch.
–He had ear surgery this fall and it was very painful, so he spent a lot of recovery time under the bed hiding. When he finally felt better, he climbed triumphantly onto the dining room table, which he is not allowed to do, but I let him do it this time because I was so happy to see that he was feeling better. I would never let Nate or Alex climb onto the dinner table after recovering from a cold, though. In fact, I’d say, “Get down from there! What are you, animals?” But SeaTac is an animal who has us all wrapped around his luxurious, just-fell-in-salad-dressing tail.
Your Turn: If you own a pet, what is his or her favorite form of entertainment?