Tuesday, December 07, 2004

Arthur and the Sofa of Doom

This morning, Arthur gave me quite a scare. I had my coat on and was about to leave for work, but before I leave each morning I look at the boys and what they're doing and I say good bye to them. Well, I found Beowulf, because as soon as I came out of the bedroom, he started following me around and meowing, but I could not find Arthur anywhere.

I looked everywhere and I mean everywhere. I checked the kitchen and all areas of the livingroom. I checked the litterbox. I checked under and on every table and chair. I checked behind the desks. Then I started looking into places where the cats should never be able to go. I checked the bathroom (which we leave closed at all times to keep them out) and the bedroom (same thing). I even checked the closets.

Finally, I started to panic. I went out into the hallway outside our apartment and walked around calling for Arthur. I thought maybe he had somehow gotten out of the apartment. But he wasn't there. On the theory that his brother would find him, I carried Beowulf around the apartment and let him meow for Arthur. No luck.

I listened carefully, straining to hear the sound of Arthur's collar. No luck.

I called Liz at work. "Did you check the closets," she asked. "Yes," I said. "Did you check the litterbox, behind the desks, under the chairs, under the air conditioner, behind the steroe?" Yes, yes, yes.

Where was Arthur? Had he crawled somewhere, gotten hurt and died. A friend of mine once came home to find his cat laying dead in the mechanism of a reclining chair and I always think about that whenever I can't find the boys. We don't have a reclining chair, but you never know what they could get into.

The one place I checked but didn't believe he could get under was the sofa. The reason I didn't believe it is that we have fortified the sofa so many times to prevent them from getting under. We have thick books stuffed into every opening and the boys have thus far been unable, despite their trying, to get in. Well, just as I was about to lose it, I noticed a little paw sticking out from under the sofa. Somehow, he had pushed some of the books in and squeezed himself in. When Beowulf saw the paw, Arthur crawled out to play with his brother.

Whew! Now, how do we really keep them from getting under there?


Thumper said...

Unless you have a sofa that sits up *really* high, eventually he'll grow too big to hide there. And then he'll find somewhere else... Our cat managed to find hiding paces in a house that had absolutely no furniture. We were tearing through the house trying to find him--he was sitting on top of the refrigerator, watching us, probably laughing.

Until he grows too big to get under the sofa, you might want to get some wood to block the base with, something he can't push inward.

He'll still find places...Max has places we haven't discovered. There are just times we can't find him, even though we KNOW he's in the apartment.

Shirlie said...

Boy you can say that again. They always find SOME out of the way place, don't they? Our Thai, a Siamese, disappeared once. We were wrecks, of course. When I finally found him, he was curled up in a tiny little space behind my computer - snug, warm, and very sound asleep!

Anonymous said...

I would build some sort of "toe kick" to attach on the underside of the couch. The local PetSmart here in Maryland has a cat adaptation center and the cages are about 7" off the ground supported by wheels. The problem they have is the older volunteers have a really hard time getting under the cage to get the cats after cleanings.

So they wanted me to see about designing and building something closing it off. They have yet to follow through with getting the materials so I can do something for them but it can definitely be done. Depending on the type of sofa you have you might be able to use some wood that matches your sofa nicely (or you can cover it with a similar fabric).

Drew McManus

Anonymous said...

My friend has four cats. Every morning before she leaves for work, she does a head count. One morning she was in a hurry and forgot to count. She went back in the house to get her lunch out of the fridge, and her kitten Topsy was IN THE FRIDGE of all places. Little buggers......