Playing with Fire

It was a cold and rainy night.  Mr. Man decided that it was a good occasion to have a fire in the fireplace.  I was not so sure for two adorable reasons.  Yes, my fireplace was still packed full of cardboard boxes to keep Anabel and Sally out of it.  No, they hadn’t gotten bored with it by now.  In fact, Sally had just spent the whole weekend trying to get in there.

So even though I love a cozy evening by the fireplace, I was concerned that we would have more on our hands than Mr. Man realized.

Our dearly departed Clementine loved having a fire in the fireplace.  Clementine was always looking for the warmest spot possible and lounging on the ottoman in front of a raging fire was one of her favorite ways to spend her time.  But she was a grown cat by the time the fireplace came into her life and never paid it any attention when it wasn’t serving her insatiable quest for warmth.

As Mr. Man was removing my make-shift barricade and getting the logs ready to light, I was in the other room putting the kittens’ harnesses on them.  When I bothered them by attaching the leads, they knew that something was up.  This part was probably more disturbing than the fire wound up being.

Mr. Man kept telling me that I was over-reacting because animals know what fire is and they know to stay away from it.  I’ve seen The Jungle Book, I get it, but I also have seen how interested these kittens were in a candle.  I felt that an abundance of caution would not be regrettable in any case.

Helpful hint: place your candle inside a large glass cylinder to keep curious kittens safe.

The kittens and I watched from a safe distance as Mr. Man lit the fire.  Once he had it going and the screen back in place, I let them wander around and check it out.  They were respectfully interested, but not overly so.  Within a few minutes I felt comfortable taking the leads off so that we could all go about our own business.

Sally did get bold and approached the hearth, but he didn’t get after the screen like he does other times.  I will probably want to put the leads on again the next time we have a fire, just until things get going.  But it is looking like the kittens and the fireplace will be able to co-exist peacefully and happily ever after.

2 Replies to “Playing with Fire”

  1. Sally’s tail is a real show stopper. Alexandra had a tail like that for about 4 years and then not so fat. She was a full blood Maine Coon.

    How did you train the kittens to harness and leads. I have put a harness on Nikolas 5 times. He thrashes for 30 to 40 min and then starts to cry pitifully. I can’t stand it, so of course I take it off. The leash is another non-starter. He just lays down.

    1. Sally’s tail is amazing. Clementine would be so jealous. I’ll have to try to get a photo of it at full mast, you won’t believe it!

      I think that my kittens are a little more easy-going than Nicholas II. I think the first time that I put the harnesses on, I did something to distract them after I got them geared up – got a toy out or something. They never got too bothered about it. I didn’t try the leads at all for a few weeks, then when I did, I had treats. Sally will totally walk with me, he is food motivated. Anabel isn’t, so if I put her lead on, I have to pick her up. I need to work with her with a toy, I think that will work for her, I just haven’t done it yet.

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