The Mission: Put together a Cat Palace that Atari will love and not destroy quite so quickly.
For future reference, The Cat Palace is red plush with white rope scratching poles. Atari is a small, grey fluffy cat with brown, tan, White, cream and dark grey splotches. Building took place in a hallway about 1.5m in length.
The box arrives and we eagerly open it. Inside are the treasures that will become our new Cat Palace. But will Atari prefer the box or the toy? Only time will tell.
An open box with plastic inside. In front are the pieces of the tree. Visible are: a house (box), two square platforms, one round platform and three posts. On top of the house is a bag with screws and a sheet of instructions.
Atari has seen us putting together this strange contraption. What could it be? she wonders. And why are my servants not paying attention to me?
Same scene as before, taken close up and to the right side. The left aide of the photo is obscured. Atari sits looking up at the camera next to the wall.
She decided to check it out. It smelled interesting enough. Maybe the servants were paying tribute to their goddess! We had barely gotten started when she shoved her way in and demanded to know what was going on.
One of the platforms is upside down, three posts screwed into the bottom. A third post is visible next to the wall. Atari is sniffing the platform.
She tested her new toy out immediately. Safe to say she liked the way it sharpened her claws.
Same as previous scene, except that Atari is now scratching the post nearest to the camera.
We got the platform attached and asked her what she thought.
She looked at us for a while, then decided she'd rather play with the box.
Two platforms standing on thin edge, with the posts connecting them. Atari is in the centre looking at the camera.
Atari is sitting inside the plastic bag inside the cardboard box, looking up at the camera.
We kept working, adding the house to the upper platform. Atari noticed immediately that we still weren't paying her any attention.
The house can be seen, with a hand and arm on top. The box in the background has an Atari head poking out of it.
As we kept building, she got more and more interested. She was very subtle about this, of course.
The box. Atari is standing with her front paws on the edge, looking at the palace. Her back feet are still inside the box. It is very obvious she is watching us.
We finished and presented it to her for inspection. Her first act was to see if she could fit inside the small house.
The bottom platform and house can be seen, with a scratching post visible above the house. Atari has her head inside the houses.
Next she inspected the platform at the top, to see if it met with her exacting standards. She of course noticed the mouse we had attached to the bottom of it.
The middle platform and house can be seen, as well as the post above the house and the top platform. Atari is standing with her back legs on the middle platform and her front legs on the top of the house. She is sniffing a white mouse hanging from the bottom of the top platform.
We moved The Cat Palace next to her old tree, just to see the difference. The difference was stark.
Old Tree On The Right: Grey with white rope posts. Three platforms. A rope drops from the bottom of the top platform through a hole in the middle platform. Rope on posts is fraying and badly damaged.
New Tree On The Left: plush red with white rope posts. Another scratching post horizontal on the bottom platform, as well as a white paw print on bottom platform. House on the middle platform with a scratching post leading from the top of the house to the third, round platform. A mouse on a strong is on the bottom of the third platform.
New tree significantly bigger than the old tree! It is 1.2m tall, and comes up to just under my shoulder.
Atari wasted no time in playing with the new cat tree. She jumped onto the top and attacked the mouse with vigour.
House and top platform can be seen. Atari is sitting at the top, leaning over the edge and batting the mouse.
This vigour did not last long. She quickly got bored or tired or both, and flopped down onto the floor.
Atari lying on a tiled floor against the wall.
Atari loves her new The Cat Palace. She sits on it daily, covering it in her fur. Plus, the mouse and scratching posts keep her occupied when we're not home.