If I had known that Denzel was going to spend a week under the bed huddled in an area that can’t be more than one square foot, I wouldn’t have worried so much about getting him a spacious carrier. Hell, I could’ve put him in a shoebox with holes. Okay, a boot box—he’s a big cat.
The first two days or so, neither Denzel or Desdemona left the small bedroom they were first let out of their carriers in. They spent most of their time either under the bed or under the covers.
Desdemona was out and about after a day and a half. She made herself right at home and after three days, she’d checked out every single corner of the house—parts I doubt even the Ledouxs have seen.
But it seems Denzel has taken permanent residence under the bedcovers.
After about four days, I become a bit concerned. Is he eating? Maybe he leaves the spot and eats when I’m asleep. Sure, someone has been drinking the water and eating the kibble, but that could be Desdemona, who is adjusting better than any of us. I think she’s already been to Paris several times. Or at least Pontoise.
I tried all sort of tricks to get Denzel to come out from under the bed (I feel he must do it willingly or he will be further traumatized). It was easier evacuating the settlers from Gaza. The trick that seems to work the best is lying down in a semi-fetal position near the foot of the bed. If I stay still long enough (and I can’t be looking at him), I can hear the jangle of his new jewelry (rabbies vaccine tag and microchip number) as he crouches his way over to investigate.
If I move or acknowledge him, he’ll probably crawl back under the bed, so I play dead as he sniffs around with what I imagine is concern. I wait until he seems comfortable and then tell him what a good boy he is and I slowly sit up. He allows me to pet him, which he seems to enjoy immensely
Now I slowly coax him downstairs. He is distrustful, but he follows haltingly. I continue to tell him what a good boy he is as Desdemona watches, probably a little perplexed (I just hope she’s not jealous—it’s always the difficult child who gets all the attention).
We finally reach the kitchen (this takes approximately 45 minutes) and I point out the waterbowl and the kibble bowl while opening a fresh can of the finest French catfood to tempt him. He is clearly jittery, but interested. I put the bowl down and he takes a few bites. I feel triumphant. Until he stops after two bites, looks up at me accusingly like I’m trying to poison him, and skulks off again, already hunched to the ground in his under the bed position.
In the past couple of days, I’ve seen a little more of him. The last couple of nights he’s come all friendly and demanding attention. Then after an hour or so of heavy petting, he skulks back under the bed as though he has been mortally wounded. I figure sooner or later, he’ll have to come out amongst the living.
As long as I don’t vacuum for the next six months.
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