The Kitten Formerly Known As Miss Prissy

Tazzy McFitz
My kitten, looking sweet as can be.

Well, this is awkward. Turns out my kitten wasn’t a female, after all, but a male.  Sigh. I guess that explains why she… er, HE… could go from acting sweet and cuddly to being my worst nightmare faster than you can you holler “Ouch!” And I have about a million scratches criss-crossing my arms and legs to prove it.

So now that we knew she was a he, Miss Prissy needed a new name. But what to name him? I wanted to name him something that started with a ‘P’ and ended with a ‘Y’, but I couldn’t find or think of a single name I liked. Then I tried to come up with a name that rhymed with Prissy, but failed to think of anything worth considering. I spent three hours googling ‘male cat names’, ‘male names for a black cat’, etc. and it was a total waste of time.

So I tried to find words that matched his temperament, instead. I opened up my trusty dictionary/thesaurus program and started looking up words. I can’t remember them all, but I thought I found the perfect name with Stormy. It definitely fit his temperament! But after a while, I changed my mind. It just wasn’t… right.  I suggested the name Fitz, because he’s always throwing a fit, but no one liked it but me so that was shot down, too. So I started looking some more. And then I found it. The perfect name…TAZ.  (As in the Tasmanian Devil from the Looney Tunes cartoons.)

taz

But did it fit? Let’s compare the cartoon character’s temperament with my cat.

Short temper? Check.

Very little patience? Check.

Enormous appetite? CHECK! We have a winner!

Taz, or rather, Tazzy, would be his new name. (I call him Tazzy McFitz… because I like it.) He started responding to it almost immediately, so it was definitely the right choice.

Tazzy McFitz
Tazzy McFitz, formerly known as Miss Prissy, looking as mean as he can be.

 

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Wild Thing

Miss Prissy

It’s been a week since Miss Prissy came into my life, and what a week it’s been! The first couple of days were easy. Priss was a little uncertain of her new surroundings, and cautious about checking things out. She ate a lot, and slept a lot. When she was awake, she was playful and sweet… and when she decided it was time for a nap, she liked to be in my lap, or at least lying close to me. The only time she seemed to get agitated was when she had to wait for her food bowl to be refilled. Other than that, she wasn’t much trouble at all.

Then she got used to being around us… and unleashed her inner Wild Thing.

Each day, she explored more areas, and more things caught her interest. She’d jump a little higher, play a little harder, get into areas and things she shouldn’t get into… and heaven help the person foolish enough to try to coax her away or stop her from doing something… that unleashed Psycho Prissy.

If I made her stop scratching at the couch? Psycho Prissy decided it was more fun to slash and slice my arms. Take away the cord she was chewing on? No problem, Psycho Prissy would rather bite my hand, anyway. If I was silly enough to wear yoga pants, Psycho Prissy enjoyed taking a leisurely, claw-digging stroll up my leg. If I walked past her and disturbed her playtime, Psycho Prissy had a blast pouncing on my ankle for a quick scratch and bite… which was almost as much fun for her as jumping on my lap, walking over me to sit on my shoulder and smacking me in the face with her tail.

And those are the mildest encounters I had with the Wild Thing. I’ve had cats in the past, but I don’t remember any of them biting and scratching so much in a single week. I’ve got more scratches than I can count! Ouch!

But… she’s still a baby. It’s going to take time to get her settled down and used to living inside. Little as she is, she’s got a lot of fight in her, and I’m sure that’s what kept her alive before we took her in. I can’t expect her to switch that off immediately. And honestly, I don’t really want her to… that’s the sort of thing that makes a cat a good mouser, and when you live in a rural area, the occasional mouse will get in your house. She (briefly) caught one the other day, but it got away. She must have scared the hell out of that mouse, because we haven’t seen hide nor hair of it since, which suits me just fine!

So, yeah… she’s going to drive me a little crazy sometimes. She’s going to scratch or bite sometimes. She’s going to inspire new ways for me to arrange things so she won’t chew on them or possibly hurt herself… and that’s a good thing. I’ll have to get used to looking at the floor when I’m walking in a dim area, so I don’t accidentally step on her.

The good thing is, it’s not constant chaos… even the Wild Thing has to sleep sometimes.

Miss Prissy

Little Miss Priss

In my haste to post about Miss Prissy a couple of days ago, I neglected to mention that the photo I used what NOT an actual photo of her, but one I found on Pixabay of a kitten that looks similar to her. Even though I only have one (awful) photo of her, I decided to go ahead and put it up so you can see what she really looks like.

THIS is Miss Prissy…

Miss_Prissy_cr_edited
Miss Prissy aka Little Miss Priss

 

See? I wasn’t kidding when I said it was an awful photo. This is pretty much where she stayed most of that first night, which didn’t offer any decent photo ops (especially not with my phone, rather than my Nikon). I’ve been too busy to get a decent photo of her yet… maybe I’ll get that done over the weekend.

She was pretty thin when we found her, and hadn’t done very well in finding food on her own, so it’s going to take a little while for her to fatten up. Or maybe it won’t, considering how much she’s been eating. (I’ve been joking her name should have been Miss Piggy!) That first night, she ate two cans of tuna, and by the time we’d gone shopping and come home, she was halfway through a third can. Sometime in the wee hours of the morning, the tuna was gone and she was hungry again. She had a bit of an attitude when I gave her the first bowl of kitty food—she sniffed the bowl, looked up at me and meowed as if to say, “Really? This is not what I wanted!”—but she decided she liked it after a bite or two.

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SmartyKat Bouncy Mouse (Source: Amazon)

Last night, I bought her a new toy, you know, because two multiple toy packs were just not enough. (Don’t laugh at my lack of self-control… even if it is funny. Haha!) I knew she’d love playing with attacking this mouse toy, and I had the perfect thing to hang it on—an unused plant stand she became fascinated with yesterday morning. Sure enough, as soon as I put it on there and she saw it sway, she was all over it, pouncing, grabbing, swiping, and biting like her life depended on it. There’s no way for me to permanently hang it on the plant stand, so she was triumphant in defeating her dangly new foe many times, bringing it down to the floor where she continued to delight in playing with attacking it . And woe to anyone foolish enough to attempt reattaching it to the stand while she watched! Miss Priss didn’t take very kindly to her prey being touched, and let it be known with a couple of lightning fast swipes of her paws. (I may need to start buying band-aids in bulk if we continue to engage in such risky behavior.)

It turned out to be a wise purchase. Miss Priss spent so much time and energy waging war on her enemy that she completely exhausted herself. As I type this, she is lying in her bed, sleeping peacefully. I know this because I moved her bed from the floor—where I said she was to stay—onto the couch—which I said she would never be allowed to get onto, because she didn’t need to be there.

It’s only been a little over 72 hours since we took her in, but I’d say she’s learning very well. Miss Prissy will have us trained in no time!