Look out! It’s a trap!

Watanuki has long, silky fur on his tummy.

Looks like it would be very pleasant to rub, doesn’t it?
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I don’t recommend trying. Unless you happen to be Maggie, nine times out of ten, if you see him in this position, he’s trying to lure you close enough to allow him to latch onto your hand with all four sets of claws. The tenth time, he’ll add a mouthful of sharp teeth as well.

We try to discourage such behaviour.

6 thoughts on “Look out! It’s a trap!

  1. NO one, who knows the slightest thing about feline behavior, would fall into such a trap- not without wearing gauntleted welder’s gloves, which kind of detracts from the point of the exercise, at least from the tummy-rubber’s point of view. This is one of the reasons reasonable people tend to be somewhat ambivalent about cats in general. They don’t really like us, when you come right down to it- or, if they do, they will still (for reasons variously explained as “instinct” or just “evilness”) kill us, if they can. Makes for interesting relationships.

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    • While I’ll grant that there’s some validity to your position, it’s really not that simple. Yuki and Kaja both expose their tummies for rubs in the same way, and the worst that’s likely to happen to you if you agree to their request is that you’ll get drooled on (Yuki is a big drooler).

      Maybe they’re just better about repressing the urge to commit mayhem. Or maybe ‘Nuki is just demon-spawn.

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  2. This post has made me realise that after all these years I have been stupid enough to fall into this trap over and over again. I don’t consider it to be insanity though, here’s my argument: Of our 3 cats (photos in blog), 1 attacks when belly rubbed, 1 stretches and drools like cute Yuki there and our 3rd simply prefers to roll over for a butt scratch.So I’ve been fooled into a false sense of trust? Ha! I’ll be unable to resist the next belly rub, scars are trophies right? – Jill

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    • Scars are indeed trophies, and I’ve got a whole shelf of them myself, mostly from Sachiko’s lack of clarity around the proper role of teeth and claws in snuggling.

      Thinking about tummy rubs, we’ve got two that like them (Yuki and Rhubarb), two that can take ’em or leave ’em (Kaja and Kokoro), and two that play the trap game (‘Nuki and Sachiko). I have to wonder if there’s some significance in the two trappers being the tuxedo wearers. Is there an analogy here for the modern Class War? Or am I reading too much into Sachiko’s “big brudder worship”? Probably both.

      But I digress. More importantly, Rhubarb has been camped outside my office all day, keeping me company without being a pest about it. I think he deserves a tummy rub for that.

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      • I think you’re spot on, they have clans amongst themselves and can’t falter in their facade towards their kinsmen! When the humans give them what they can’t let on what they want, it’s a betrayal to their values. Until they come to terms with enjoying the belly rubs, they won’t let on they like it. Rhubarb knows where its at, give him a tummy rub. Good human.

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      • Then we’ve got a whole crew of traitors who don’t hesitate to let us know what they want. Usually food or catnip. 😉

        And Rhubarb will get his rub as soon as I call it quits for the day.

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