Cats make lousy coworkers.
From friends who report SHENANIGANS while trying to work from home to my own cats (one of them, at the least, is NOT management material) to trying to get some sanctuary business done in a borrowed office at Tabby’s Place, the proof is unquestionable. Even with practice provided by increasing time working at home, cats have not, as a rule, learned how to be good colleagues.
Lornadoone is a prime example. She is truly a terrible coworker. Be not mistaken. Lornadoone is an amazing cat. Of course she is! She is a Tabby’s Cat through and through, from her tiniest toe bean to the orange collar around her neck. The primary problem is that she demands a lot of attention. DISTRACTION (albeit a delightful one). Secondarily, which might also be primarily, this floofly, grey and white tabby enjoys walking on keyboards, posting unintended messages on social media, and lying on folders containing much needed documents.
It’s also a little difficult to work with someone who insists on climbing on one’s lap, leaning forehead to forehead, and biting on one’s shirt (The EEEEWWWW factor is significant. Cat slobber. Blech!). Not only does it take time to carefully disengage from inappropriate shirt chewing, it also takes time to interact appropriately and reinforce good behaviors. Besides, really, who could be in an office with Lornadoone without giving this particularly sweet cookie (so much better than the other kind) some attention and sweetness?
Gauntlet thrown! Find a super sweet, cuddly, chatty cat and try to get some quality work completed with alacrity. Let me know how that goes.
All said and done (Saying it all will never get done!), working with any cat – even one less…um…interactive…than Lornadoone – is bound to make it difficult to get down to business.
But, getting down to business is a particular forte of cats world over. They’re business is just a bit different from human business. For cats, the biggest business is dining. Their needs are often hobbit-like starting with first breakfast, progressing through variations of brunches, lunches, snacks, and teas straight through dinner and a light supper. Fish, chicken, and sprayable cheese must needs be appropriately interspersed with beef and more fish. Serious business indeed!
Play time and nap time are almost as serious business as multiple feeding times. Wand toys, balls, beds, and sunspots are required tools of the cat trade. Blankets and snuggly toys are also best provided.
Once satisfied (Tall order!), even a cat like Lornadoone will take a break and allow an office-mate to get something done. Afterwards, it’s important to make time for the more crucial business of providing pets and cuddles. Not only is a great afterwork kitty visit important, it’s the best compensation any worker could ask for.
Author’s note: Fuzzy photos are proof of the challenges of working with cats, especially this particular cat. Totally worth the effort! And, for whatever else it’s worth, Lornadoone really should share this by line.