Monday Morning Bernie & Vinny

Monday, November 15, 2010

Vinny, whom I've dubbed Vin Peisel, has been up to his old tricks. Just when I think we're developing a routine and he's getting comfortable and feeling at home, he pees.

I felt bad that he was an outdoor cat who's now forced to live an indoor existence so I bought him a harness. I only walked him in the back yard because, honestly, if I saw someone walking a cat, I would be the first one to make fun of them.

Last week, I decided that I would tie him out so I could clean yet more pee from my living room rug. I kept looking outside to check on him and he seemed to have found a comfortable spot under my neighbor's front bush.

When I went out to get him, I tugged on the lead and instead of feeling any resistance, it slid right out from under the bush.

Without Vinny attached!

I couldn't figure out how he had Houdinied himself out since it was still fastened. I walked around the yard, calling for him, but he was nowhere to be found so I went inside to call my sister.

"Oh my God! I can't believe he got away. Does he have a collar on with a tag?"

"No, I took his regular collar off when I put on the harness."

"Oh my God! He's not used to being on a busy street. He's going to get killed! What if another animal gets him? Oh, Chrissy, what's the matter with you?"

By now, I'm crying hysterically because I've left this poor kitty out to die. I spent the next few hours hanging out with Bernie and berating myself for being such a bad mother when I heard the dogs next store going crazy. It must be Vin!

Sure enough, there he was sitting on their front porch, tail swishing from side to side, daring them to come and get him. Luckily, they were locked behind a fence.

I felt like Dorothy went Toto came back.

"Vinny, you came back!"

Of course, 10 minutes later, I was contemplating opening the door and letting him out again when he peed on Bernie's blanket.

My friends can't understand why I keep giving him another chance, but c'mon, that's what I do with all the guys in my life. I let them piss all over me and then convince myself that I'm going to be the one to change them.

This time, I knew I wouldn't be able to do it alone, so I joined a chat room for cat lovers and asked for advice. If anyone will know what do, it's the crazy cat ladies. I've taken their advice and I'm happy to say, we're in our second pee free day. This is what they suggested:

Don't take him out at all. It just confuses him and makes him want to be out again.

Use the pheromone product, Feliway. I bought both the diffuser and the spray. It emits the same facial pheromones that cats do so that your home and objects seem familiar to the cat.

Don't play favorites. This one's tough. I mean, c'mon, Bern was my first baby. But I do try to give equal lovin' so neither one gets jealous.

I even got a direct email from some dude who had this suggestion:

ok the best way to cope with the cat is to pee on him i have been told this so
try it if you dare ????? .. i got a cat and i want try it

Um. Pass.

The other day, when Bernie came in, I could see that Vinny just wanted to sniff her because she smelled like the outside. Well, he made the mistake of putting his paws on her. I have NEVER seen Bernie move so fast in my life. She was growling and going after him and he was swiping at her with his paws.

By evening, they were fine.

"I better cover my face so no one sees this dog lying so close to my bum."

"I guess she's not so bad."

If the crazy cat lady suggestions don't work, that's it. I'm done!

I know...I know...who am I kidding?

He's not goin' anywhere.


  1. Ha! Lovin' the name, Chrissy! I still think you should pee on him. That'll teach the little tinkler.

  2. @Laoch of Chicago,
    Thanks. So is your kitty!


    Isn't the name perfect?

    Well, I did cover the new sofa in plastic..

  3. Careful hanging with the crazy cat ladies. Just hope we dont see you on Hoarders some day.

  4. OMG, Chrissy...adorable, and I mean ADORABLE photos and captions!

    And I love this....

    "Vinny, whom I've dubbed Vin Peisel.'

    Bwhahahahahahahaha! That is hysterical!

    I'm so proud of you for giving Vinny another chance. You GO, girl! I have a feeling that the crazy cat ladies suggestions WILL work, so keep the faith!

    X to you, Bern, and Vin Peisel!

  5. Try putting a diaper on Vinnie. It won't work but it will provide you with several minutes of entertainment.

    P.S. Wear thick rubber gauntlets when you put the diaper on him.

  6. Sometimes I wish I were a cat person.

    Peace, Love and Chocolate

  7. I have had many cats and unfortunately, males do "spray". Is Vinny really peeing or spraying? If a cat is peeing anywhere other than his litter box, he has issues and needs to see a vet because it would be highly unusual. I think he is marking his territory. He wants to me the alpha animal, which male cats often do when they become adult cats.

    I used to hear about fixing the male cat before he is 6months old...but it is not true. I had two male cats: Maximillion Marblecake "Max" and Fergus Magee. Max was an only cat, so he never sprayed until we moved. It was a new place so he had to mark it as his.

    Fergus never sprayed until we moved to a house. There were neighbor outdoor cats who came on our porch and sprayed on our front door. Ferg would not have it and took to spraying all four corners of every room. I had drapes on double slider doors measuring 12 feet across the back of my house. He would spray those drapes!!! I had to take them down, wash them on the patio with a hose and then hang them on my patio cover to dry in the sun to get the scent out...then he would do it again. I tried for four years.

    I had my son in law pee around the perimeter of the yard and used chili pepper powder and moth balls to keep the neighborhood cats out. It was a constant task, otherwise they would return.

    At the end of the four years, my house smelled of cat piss as soon as one entered the front door. It was awful. I loved that cat but had to adopt him out so he could be an only cat. He also would not eat cat food. He would only eat Chicken Noodle baby food with Purina kitten chow or people food scraps. He was the most affectionate, loving cat and did not scratch the furniture. The older woman who adopted him was also madly in love with him.

    I had to hire a man to spray the house with some stuff to take away the smell, which worked once he was gone and not re-spraying.

    Good Luck. I hope for your sake and his, he is the exception.

  8. Great post! I am also relentlessly forgiving of cats. I had a charmer who lived to be 18, and he peed wherever he pleased. My husband once commented (at the time of a certain Clint Eastwood film about the west) that if they ever made a movie about Mort (the cat), it would be called "Forgiven." Yup.

  9. Oh, my Disco is Peesco sometimes and has been on various anxiety meds and got the Feliway plugins too (damn they are expensive). He is on Paxil right now with 90% good results...I just can't leave my purse on the floor or hang a coat over the back of a chair. The cat hospital where I work uses a behviorist group that has helped me learn a lot...cats feel intimidated by things that have been outside of their house--shoes, purses, least he's never sprayed on me...


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