Kitties, cats, cats

by Alison Rasmussen


Peak's Woods Mintie, and Colbert (we call him "Bear") in the background
I'm one of those "pet-friendly" doll collectors. I can no longer honestly state, "my cats stay away from my dolls." I have four children and four cats, and a hefty set of IKEA Billy bookcases anchored against the wall in our living room, with heavy glass doors, which the cats cannot open.

Despite these protective measures, I am still at risk for the antics my furry beasts make to harm, not my beautiful dolls--they love the dolls because I do--but their accessories! Let me share some of my trials and tribulations.

  • The shoe box. I have this gorgeous, arranged by color jewelry tray of shoes for my 11" dolls--it's like a tray of jelly beans. The cats never showed any interest, until the day Chanel, our then six month-old kitten, walked on top of it and spilled it. Each of those lovely shoes was a special treat for her to bat all around the house! (Why I hadn't put it away--well, I was in the middle of a project, you know.) Now, I have to hide the thing.
  • Shiny, sparkly objects. It doesn't matter if it's Crystal Barbie's stole, the coolest acrylic-heeled shoes from DollHeart, or a face-up protector for a BJD, Lily (18 months) love sparkly things. (I'm a diamond girl, too.) She is all about the shine. She will even settle for Barbie packaging. She comes running if she hears me opening a box, her hopes high.
  • The wrapping pounce. Nico, our 19 month-old sleek black cat, can't help himself around piles of brown wrapping paper: shredding it, hiding underneath it to pounce on an unsuspecting foot or brother or sister walking past, or resting on top of it. Like my children at two, packaging makes the perfect toy. It does make wrapping dolls for shipping difficult, however.
  • The photo prop. Since we have four cats, this happens frequently. It isn't till I upload my photos that I realize a cat has been in the background the entire time. Colbert (four years) is the biggest culprit. It's probably his massive body, and that he spends his days lying around. I hardly notice, since he only gets up if he thinks I won't be coming back in that room. (He's really a sweetie.)
  • Mohair wigs. Those I have to hide like my jewelry. The cats can smell them, and they just adore them. They chase them, kill them (that's a lot of work, and very time consuming, it turns out), carry them around in their mouths for a while, and then lick them. When they are pleased with the kill, they bring them to me, usually leaving them on my pillow or bringing them to my feet, expecting praise, rather than a horrified reaction.
By now, dear reader, you might suspect I have a giant label on my forehead, written in some sort of writing only cats can see, in bold letters, that reads, "SUCKER." Well, you might be right. I hear squirt bottles work. I have been known to wrestle and scruff a cat. And yes, they all four follow me around the house all day, like dogs, as if I am their mom. And I stare them down a lot, to let them know who is in charge.

So... now you know. If you have severe cat allergies, please stay away from my dolls. But if you love cats, kids and other animals, you may be able to identify with me more.