The weekend after sailing season last November 2015, Damian and I adopted a 3 month old kitten from the local animal shelter. Little did the little guy know then that he would become a BOAT CAT!  Damian spotted him right away and knew he was the one for us.  Our Leo cat, affectionally called Booh-bah, is extremely lovable and takes command of a room with his lively presence.

Over the winter months, we had to leave him during the day to “make the monies.” He did not like that so much despite the cat tree Damian had made for him by the window and the many toys we leave out for him.  When we return home, he runs to the door to greet us and then embarks on meowing a monologue, detailing his day and listing his many “grievances.” Damian usually gets home before I do, so most days I find the two of them relaxing on the couch together watching YouTube or snoozing.  But when Schnitzel sees me, it’s play time to him, and all he wants me to do is play “bird” or “worm” with the cat-toy-wands (recommended by Jackson Galaxy) that enable him to use his kitten energy and instinct to track down and pounce his pretend prey.

We brought Schnitzel aboard the Gem&I in the beginning of May and oriented him to boat life.  We weren’t going to leave the little guy behind to cope with his separation anxiety! By the end of the first day, he had claimed the new environment as his own.  Sun spots and little nooks suited him quite well, and he was his normal “Mojo Cat” self.  He wears a little blue harness so we can tether him to the boat and make sure he doesn’t take off down the dock or fall off the side of the boat when he gets too excited about the local ducks who visit him.  We have also considered getting some lifeline netting to further cat-proof the sailboat to prevent him from falling off the boat underway.

Schnitzel likes being a boat cat, and he even told us so!  After spending a weekend with him on board, he reminds us that he wants to go back by rummaging around in his toy box during the day while we are gone at work and pulls out his harness, laying it out in the middle of the room so we are sure to see it when we come home.  At first, we thought it was a coincidental fluke, but that was not the case when he did it over and over again–just to make sure we got the message.  He wants to be on his boat!

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