Thursday, July 13, 2017

nonverbal communication

We have a water fountain for the cats. Yes, they're spoiled - but also, it means I can just pour more water in, let the two cats duke it out, and clean it / change the charcoal filter once a month, instead of having bowls on the floor that need monitored daily for water volume and cleanliness.

Because it's a fountain, the motor noise changes when the water level drops past a certain point. This makes "when to refill" really easy.

Now, some people have cats that meow a lot. Some breeds are naturally talkative (meezers!), and others, it's been argued, figured out that the big dumb thumb-monkeys can't figure out body language and have to be meowed at like kittens. My cats, well, the maine coon kitten chirrups, but the older cat doesn't meow.

Kili just came and got me, by way of walking to where I was sitting, and putting a paw on my knee. When I put the book aside to provide a clear lap, she faced away from me, then stared over her shoulder. I sighed, put the book down, and followed the tail-high slow walk that stayed two steps ahead of me to the water fountain. She crouched and stared at it, but did not drink.

"It's full, Kili."

She stared at it, and did not drink. When I didn't get it, she looked up at me, then stared hard back at the water fountain.

"Cat, I have it on the schedule to clean it and replace the filter Saturday."

More staring at the water fountain, like it's a spider she hasn't decided how to kill.

I sigh, unplug it, and pick it up. Kili immediately dashes around the kitchen island, jumps up on the counter, and stares at the sink where  I'll wash it.

"I got the point, Kili."

Right, maybe there's a reason this cat doesn't meow. She's got her people pretty trained on the nonverbal communication.