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Jared Felkins: The animals are slowly taking over

Jared Felkins • Updated Dec 9, 2017 at 11:00 AM

 “No animal should ever jump up on the dining-room furniture unless absolutely certain that he can hold his own in the conversation.” 

— Fran Lebowitz

Anyone who may be a fan of this column may already know this, but I am a dog lover. So let this serve as a spoiler alert, disclaimer or what have you, there may be some demeaning things said about cats in the column below. Read at your own risk. You have been warned. 

In my defense, the only cats I plan to speak ill of are my own. I don’t know your cat or cats, and I’m sure they are wonderful animals. They may give you great love and joy or even do tricks. That’s great. I am happy for you. 

Mine, however, do not. My dog Rock does, though. He’s such a good boy, yes he is. 

So allow you to tell me about the animal dynamic in the Felkins home. The oldest boy is Bryant, and he’s about to turn 16. Oh wait, that’s the children. They’re easily confused with the animals. 

No, there’s the afore-mentioned Rock. He’s a greyhound we rescued about a year ago. Not that we would place labels on the animals, but Rock is more of an elitist in the bunch. He is, after all, purebred. 

Did I mention he was smart? Well, he doesn’t do any tricks, but he probably could if he wanted. I figure he would use tools if we got him his own doggie hammer and screwdriver. 

Now, when most people meet Rock, they are taken aback by how big he is. He does weigh 78 pounds, which is pretty close to his racing weight when he was racing. I say that with great pride, because he’d eat a full loaf of bread in about three chomps if we let him. And everyone knows bread goes right to the hips. I digress. 

So imagine Rock’s surprise when my lovely wife, Mary, brought home two kittens a couple of months ago. Our daughters quickly named them Luna and Tinkerbell, which meant we had to keep them. 

Again, not to use labels, but these cats are far from pedigree. I don’t blame them, though. They are just victims of society, disenfranchised if you will. 

So that brings us to the most wonderful time of the year. That’s not the case with two cats. We found that out the hard way when, during a 10-minute trip to take my daughter to school one morning, we gave the cats a little freedom. Bad decision. 

I returned to find no fewer than half of our Christmas ornaments on the floor. I fished Luna out of the middle of the tree. She apparently was throwing the ornaments to Tinkerbell on the floor to play with – just for fun. 

After that, we had no choice to sequester the cats to the guest bathroom. But that didn’t work, since they somehow figured out how to open the door. I’m not giving them any credit, though, due to their mischievous intent. 

So, then we decided it would be in our best interest to keep them in our bedroom with us until after Christmas. That’s worked out swell, since Rock also stays in there. Luckily, his immense intelligence keeps his animal instincts at bay, even when the cats display their nocturnal tendencies to entertain themselves. 

In all honesty, Rock appears to simply be disinterested in the cats, which is either also a sign of intelligence or he’s prejudice toward other animals as an elitist. I’m pretty sure it’s the former rather than the latter. 

Regardless, he’s such a good boy, yes he is. 

It never helps when one of them beats Rock to his bed. He just shrugs it off and goes to lay down somewhere else. When the cat moves, he’s quickly back in his domain again. He’s such an intelligent dog. 

So that’s our animal dynamic at the moment. Let’s just hope our sanity holds out just a few more weeks when the Christmas tree goes back in the storage shed and the cats regain their run of the house. Maybe then, we can all get a little normalcy back in our lives. 

Jared Felkins really doesn’t mind the cats all that much, but he loves his Rock. Yes, he does. He’s also the editor of The Democrat. Email him at jfelkins@lebanondemocrat.com and follow him on Twitter @paperboyfelkins.

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