You know what it’s like. You come in from a hard night’s prowling and you’re starving because you didn’t get lucky! Then breakfast is put in front of you and you move forward to sniff the delicate aroma and you think to yourself: ‘Holy Mackerel and All that’s FISHY – what in Molesville is this stuff?’ 

Ollie - butter wouldn't melt in his mouth ...I do what any self-respecting starving cat would do in this situation. I walk away. Mum witters on in the background about how lovely it is but she’s lost my attention because I’m fuming. I’m starving and what am I served? Prawns and CARROTS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Who EATS carrots with prawns? Please tell me if you know because I’m not eating them.

Suddenly, I hear her opening another sachet. I wait on the bottom stair for the sound that tells me that she’s mashing whatever flavour this is in my bowl. Then I hear my crunchies sprinkled on top and start to salivate. She calls me and I stay where I am – every fibre of my being wanting to rush back to my bowl and eat every scrap. She calls me again. Again, I don’t move a muscle. Finally, she comes to see where I am – as I knew she would and I pretend I’m just about to go upstairs – having lost all interest in breakfast.

But she scoops me up, and kisses my face and I relent. I allow her to transport me back to the kitchen and place me down in front of my bowl on Garfield’s table. Casually I sniff. I can’t BELIEVE it! What is it THIS time??? I look up at Mum and demand an explanation.

Mum picks up the sachet and tells me it’s Salmon and Carrots. Salmon and CARROTS??????????????????  Who EATS this stuff? Do Humans eat Prawns and Carrots? Do they eat Salmon and Carrots? I walk off - disgusted and disgruntled because I’m so starving I could eat my own leg.

In desperation I hear the larder being opened but I reach half way up the stairs before I stop to listen to see if I can identify anything that might tell me if I’m getting another choice. This time I hear the lid being pulled off a tin – aah, perhaps 

Ollie eating his dinner - at last!

she’ll get it right this time.  I hear a bowl being brought out of the cupboard and the contents of the tin being mashed – again the crunchies that I like are being sprinkled on the top.

We go through the same scenario as before: Mum calls, I wait, Mum calls again, I still wait, Mum comes to the stairs and makes her way up to get me. She carries me down and puts me on the table where my dish is resting on a round table mat with pictures of ginger cats drawn in cartoon fashion. I sniff. What’s this? It smells NORMAL. I eat and Mum sighs. At last – she’s got it right.

She looks at the label on the tin – it reads ‘Chicken’. Plain and simple - ‘Chicken.’ Why do people who make cat food make all those weird combinations? Would Humans eat Cod in Gravy? Or Duck and Rabbit? Have you ever seen a rabbit and a duck chatting on life’s highway about their mutual interests?

Cats in the wild don’t have allotments where they grow their own vegetables ready to go – at a moment’s notice – with voles, moles, shrews, mice, birds and any of the other little furry scurrying things that we’re happy to snack on.

Cats in the wild haven’t got time to go shopping for vegetables in season to accompany their freshly caught mouse or shrew.  Cats in the wild just hunt and forage for what they can find and are grateful for it. They don’t throw up their paws in mock horror and tell themselves they have to have fine French beans or asparagus tips to go with that nice fat juicy goldfish they’ve just caught out of an unsuspecting neighbour’s pond.

On my travels I haven’t come across a hot food vendor serving up cats’ delights from his converted caravan, the dish of the day being ‘Mouse Mousse’ perhaps, or ‘Rat-atouie’, or ‘Shrew Stew’ or ‘Vole au Vin.’

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When will the people who make cat food realise that all we want is plain and simple food, not fancy vegetables that make me heave at the smell. Instead of all these silly combinations, why can’t we just have Mouse flavour, Little Furry Thing flavour, Next Door Neighbour’s Goldfish from his pond flavour? These are the things that cats ACTUALLY eat – not the highfalutin’ prawns and carrots, or lamb and peas, or haddock in aspic jelly.  If a Human wouldn’t eat it, why should Felines?

If you’re in agreement with me, or if you have anything else you want to say about what we’re expected to eat, please write to me at the Daily Mews office. If I get enough felines on my side, I’m going to storm the Prime Minister’s Office at Number 10, Downing Street. It’s about time he listened to the voters!

Timber from America has written in agreement with Ollie's diatribe, and you can read his rantings here:

One Cat is Company

"One cat is company.
Two cats are a conspiracy. 
Three cats is an attempted takeover.
Four or more cats is a complete coup!"

Shona Steele (Australia)

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