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The Pet Project, Part Four - Conquering Failures

If you have not been following along, "The Pet Project" is my humourous yet somewhat serious project to help out cat, Victoria, to lose weight through a combination of exercise and diet. You can catch up on this by reading the posts in order:

"Our Cat is Fat"
"Kitty is on a new Diet"
"Cat Walking"

Today I tried again to take the cat outside into the hallway to get her some exercise. She apparently has no problems attacking packaging, but when you try to put a collar on her and take her for a walk her response is to attack you.

Proof that if you want to feel like a failure,
you should try herding cats.

But amusing thoughts aside here is the video of Victoria playing with me, with collar on, as I am attempting to pick her up and take her for a walk. Or at least herd her towards the foyer, which I failed at because she wanted to play instead so that is what we did.

No amount of tickling her feet, trying to get her to chase my fingers or anything else worked. She just wanted to lay there all day and sleep - or bat at my fingers if I tried to do anything with her.

Obviously there is a difference in priorities here. My priority is to get her to exercise more so she can be healthier, live longer and have a fuller, more active lifestyle. Victoria's priority is to lay around all day, and do nothing but eat, sleep, and stare out the window.

So motivating her to exercise is going to be a challenge because #1, She doesn't want to exercise; #2, Exercise really isn't on her list of priorities at all: Her priorities are sleep, prowl, eat, sleep, prowl, eat - the way cats are in nature.

Except she doesn't have anything to prowl for, it isn't like we have a huge infestation of mice for her to hunt. All she has is cat toys that she gets bored with easily.

Thus my attempts so far to get her to go for a walk have been utter failures. However the trick to succeeding is to never give up and keep trying, sometimes using new techniques to get the job done.


The Laser Pointer.

She goes nuts for this thing. I got it while I was xmas shopping a few days ago and she gone bananas playing with it.

The one I purchased comes with 5 settings, Dot, Mouse, Star, Butterfly and Smiley Face - however she honestly doesn't care what shape it is. She chases it regardless and gets super excited and runs around like crazy trying to catch it.

Thus I have determined that even when the cat doesn't want to exercise, you just get out the laser pointer and suddenly she is all into it. (This is like shouting ICE CREAM in a room full of children, suddenly you have them excited.)

So how do you conquer a failure? Ingenuity and try something new/exciting.

As a metaphor for humans, I would point to the idea of using sports or other fun activities to get a person outside and having fun. Doesn't matter whether your sport is archery biathlon or mountain biking, if you are outside and having fun (and exercising by accident), then who cares what sport it is? You are not trapped doing team sports like baseball, hockey, football, soccer, etc. Go fishing if that is what makes you happy. Go scuba diving. Take a martial arts class. Learn fencing.

It seriously does not matter as long as you having fun doing your sport of choice.

Although I do admit, my long term goal with the laser pointer is to get her to go for walks outside, chasing the laser pointer. I shall endeavour to make a video of that in the future.

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