“Nera, Fluffy, would you two felines please follow Tabby’s example and leave the table. It is really not hygenic for felines to be sitting where humans eat.”
I was not at all pleased, especially when not one of the felines gave me an answer. They just ignored me.
“Nera, Fluffy, are you listening?”
“Ok, Mrs. Human, yes we heard you. Please refrain from speaking in such a loud voice, it is not so good for our sensitive feline hearing. And as an answer to your command, the word “”hygenic” does not exist in meow, so we decided to ignore your words.”
“Nera, if you decide to ignore my words, I will also decide not to speak certain words, such as “tuna is served”.”
“Mrs. Human what is the problem? It is pleasant for the feline creation to sit in high places and your so-called table is ideal.”
“Fluffy, it might be ideal. At least Tabby is showing some respect and has left the table.”
I spoke too soon, Tabby returned and jumped onto the table again.
“Tabby, I was just saying what a well behaved feline you are, as you left the table and now you are back again on the table. Tables are not for felines. Humans eat their food from the table.”
“Sorry Mrs. Human, but I only went quicky to my litter box to deal with a small matter of recycling, now I am on the table again with my sister and brother felines, admiring the view.”
“You did what Tabby?”
Now I was really annoyed, thinking of all the various bacteria that was probably settling in on my table.
“Nera hygene means keeping things clean and bacteria free. A healthy environment for putting human food on plates to eat. I am sure you would not like it if your tuna fish arrived in a dirty dish, or had insects in it.”
“Mrs. Human, that depends. Some insects are quite tasty. Flies and ants are no problem, but we are not too keen on snails. A nice juicy butterfly is also very much appreciated. We would never put snails on your food Mrs. Human, so what is the problem.”
“Nera, it is not the insects that you see, but those that are so small they are not seen: the ones that cause illness.”
“But Mrs. Human” said Tabby, “you know that we always lick ourselves after visiting the litter box, and we are constantly cleaning ourselves with our paws after a good lick. We even clean your table sometimes with a nice lick. What more could you want?”
So, I was speechless. All three cats were taken from the table and put into the garden. I then spent the next half hour cleaning the table.
Meanwhile the cats were having a conversation.
“I think she is overdoing it a bit Nera. I have never been ill after someone has sat on my favourite cushion, before I have slept on it” said Fluffy.
“And if Mrs. Human gives me a tummy tickle, I don’t complain about the bacteria she might leave behind on my fur. I just love tummy tickles – no problem.” That was Tabby’s contribution to the conversation.
Nera had naturally the last word.
“They are a bit over sensitiive sometimes, those humans. Having words in their language like hygene is not normal. I still have a dried up snail in my fur since Summer and I am still thriving. Now and again I might even pick up the odd worm, but that’s a cat’s life. I mean we all live in symbiosis with those creatures. I still feel fine and am brimming with health.”
All three cats could just not understand the fuss Mrs. Human was making about a few minutes sitting on a table.