My sneaky cat has discovered she loves the taste of warm goat’s milk. It all started one day when she realized exactly why I brought the goat into the barn. She intently watched as the warm, white liquid filled the bucket. Once I was done milking, she curiously sniffed at the bucket and was sold. There is milk in there!
The next day she was waiting at the barn when it came time to milk. She tried loving up on my and the goat’s legs as we worked. A quick swoosh of my arm told her that I was not interested in any affection. I was hard at work. She instead sat back and watched again.
This watching lasted a couple of days. In her smart cat brain she was learning. That woman gets the bucket. Then she brings the goat in. Milks the goat. And finally places the bucket on top of some of the feed bins.
The next week, she was still there… but now she didn’t need to watch any longer. She had learned. All I need to do is wait on the feed bin. The milk bucket is destined to end up there. However, when I went to place the bucket there – I pushed her off and out of my way. Foiled again!
But this is no dumb kitty. She wanted her milk. She also learned that after I set the bucket full of milk down, I walked the goat back to the pasture. Sure enough, I came back to the barn to get the milk and found her halfway in the bucket… enjoying her well planned treat.
Ugh! I don’t want furry feet in my milk! So I once again swooshed the cat away this time with a strict “no!”
This continued on for a few days. Me swooshing her away from the milk, and then walking the goat to the pasture. All seemed solved for me, but little did I know my sneaky cat was still learning.
The next day I went to do my milking and my cat, Spice, was nowhere to be seen. Great! I thought; she is over the milk fight! I can do my chore in peace.
After finishing the milking, I placed the bucket in its usual spot on the feed bin and walked the goat out to the pasture. As I walked back to the barn to gather my bucket I let out a scream! AHHHH! The cat (who suddenly had appeared out of nowhere) had knocked over the bucket to get the milk and it was spilling all over the floor!
This was not okay, and I realized I was dealing with a much smarter kitty than I thought. Game on… I said to Spice.
She continued the game of hiding until I would leave the barn. I had to find new ways to battle this cat for my milk. I tried taking the bucket with me, but leading a goat, opening a gate and holding the bucket proved quite difficult. Next, I tried carrying the cat and walking the goat to the pasture, which really complicated things. Finally, I created my own hide and seek game. I would place the milk bucket in a new spot.
This process has worked, but my cat is still learning. It takes her a few days to realize the milk is being placed in a new spot. Then I have to move it again. I have now come to the conclusion I have to hide the bucket to keep her away from the milk. So, it is a new joy to my day… where can I hide the bucket to keep her from finding it? Certainly makes my chore a bit more interesting!