I am 15 years old and for most of my life I lived with my best friend, a gray tabby like me. My human adopted us both from the Humane Society when we were kittens. But a few weeks ago, my friend got very ill and died. As you can imagine, I was grief-stricken and very depressed. Well, a week barely went by before my human decided I needed a “new friend” and brought home a 6-month-old kitten! Like just anyone from the Humane Society can replace my closest companion. As you might have guessed, I am not too fond of this kitten. I can’t turn a corner without getting jumped by him. He tore up my two toy mice and my human has gotten him about a half-dozen more cat toys, all of which he is destroying one by one. I’m really not in the mood for a “new friend,” and in any case this kitten is really annoying. I know I’m not young anymore, but I’m really tempted to run away. What do you think?
Don’t run away… that is, unless maybe you can just get out and hide under the house overnight or something like that. That’ll put some fear into your human and teach her a lesson for trying to replace one cat with another—and lying to you. The truth is that she wasn’t getting you a “new friend”—she was getting herself another cat! That whole show about finding you another pal was a ruse. Humans are like that. They don’t mean to lie, necessarily. In fact, your human may be lying to herself about her motives in dashing off to the Humane Society mere days after the death of your best friend. But if she were totally honest with herself, she’d know that she got a new kitten to inject some youth and life into a house that probably seemed rather bleak and depressing. If she’d really given the situation—and you—some thought, she would most likely have waited a while longer and brought home a mature cat who was less likely to destroy your few toys and get on your nerves. At least she gets kudos for going to the Humane Society. That’s always a good place to find a kitty who needs a home.
In any case, what’s done is done and you are now stuck with the results of your human’s unthinking and impetuous whim. Because of his boisterous and downright obnoxious nature, this kitten is hard to ignore. And you don’t seem to be in the mood to give him the thrashing that would teach him to stay away from you. I normally don’t advocate passive-aggressive approaches, but in this case I think it may work. Hide a lot. Show up late for dinner, if at all. This type of behavior is almost sure to upset your human. She’ll start thinking something’s wrong with you. Hopefully, she’ll call the vet before actually taking you down there, and the vet will probably explain that you are depressed over the death of your friend and this new kitten has turned your life upside down even further (like it wasn’t obvious to begin with, but you know how dense humans can be). If this tactic doesn’t make your human pay more attention to you and give you some space to escape the annoying kitten, then yeah, maybe disappearing under the house overnight might be the next move to get her attention. As for the kitten, give him some time. At 6 months, he’s at his worst, but eventually he’ll calm down. You two may never be best buddies, but at least his irritating antics will lessen as he matures.
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