Freud was supposed to have asked, "What do women want?"
Today I ask, "What do cats want?" Specifically, "What do our cats want?"
I'm sure it's not easy to be a pet. You're much smaller than your owners, they never understand when you ask for more food/whatever, and you don't have much control over your life. It must be frustrating.
But, for the life of me, I have no idea what our cats seem to want.
We're taking care of our daughter's cat while she's in Egypt. Though loveable, he is driving me bonkers. The cat follows me around whenever I'm downstairs (kitchen, daughter's room, and family room/TV are there), pawing my legs when I stand still long enough for him to do so. He has water and food in all his bowls--three different kinds, I might add, because of his health problems. He doesn't want to be picked up. He doesn't want to be brushed (a favorite thing), he doesn't want me to pet him, he doesn't want to go out in the yard, and he doesn't want to play. Near as I can figure, he wants me to follow him around the house until he tires of it--to what end, I've no idea. Probably it amuses him to manipulate the human into doing what he wants.
I should mention that Tapper (the solid black cat in the pictures at the bottom of the right column) is an incredibly needy cat. He's extremely attached to our daughter, and when she's not home, he loudly demands that we focus all our attention on him and his needs, unfathomable as they are. He really, really wants attention from people most of his waking moments. And it's driving me crazy!
Our cat, Scritters (the muted calico), is a needy and demanding cat, too. However, what she usually wants is petting and rubbing. If not that, then it's food. If not that, play, but this happens not so often. So I have a thirty-three percent chance of guessing what she wants. She does, however, crave petting and attention almost as much as Tapper.
Additionally, the cats loathe each other, so Scritters basically lives upstairs (our bedrooms and offices are there), while Tapper lives downstairs, where our daughter's room is. Neither of them enjoys skirmishes, so they usually keep to their own levels--but become very jealous when one smells the other on us. Sigh.
I have never, ever had cats this needy, who want humans to amuse them 24/7. I'm used to cats who amuse themselves, but show up for petting occasionally and food often. And I've had a lot of experience with cats. But these days, we have two cats who act like whiny three-year-olds.
I love them both to death, but I just don't have enough hours in the day to suit this pair. I will be so glad when our daughter comes home and I don't have Tapper demanding attention every time I venture to the first floor. I can only deal with one needy cat at a time.