Like ants to syrup, there’s something about clean sheets, blankets and freshly made beds that seem to attract dogs and cats.
I remember a fun time I had years ago with my two senior cats, Desdemona and C.D. The girls used to love it when I folded bed sheets. They came to watch, crawl under them as they dangled to the floor and most of all – ride on them.
Desi and C.D. would sit or lie down on a sheet and I pulled them across a room. I remember how big their eyes would get as they tried to hold on with their legs spread out. Sometimes, C.D. would walk on the sheet like a treadmill as I pulled it.
Today, when I start stripping blankets and sheets from my queen-size bed, my three cats come from unknown places to watch and hop onto the bare mattress. Trucker, my 60-pound dog, also likes to join in on the fun. Four furry bodies on the mattress make it laughably challenging to try to turn it. I no sooner dump one cat onto the floor and another cat is sliding between the mattress and box-spring ready to be sandwiched like cream filling in a cookie.
My cat, Forest, can be rooms away and hear me folding a sheet. He comes running and grabs onto the sheet when it touches the floor, holding it with the claws of his front paws. He lies motionless under the sheet using it as a tent. Without fail, regretful if I take his toy away, I leave the clean sheet draped over him in a pile so he can hide for a while.
Sometimes I get sidetracked while making my bed and I leave the fitted sheet exposed. It never fails that when I return I find at least two cats and Trucker sprawled out on the sheet. One night I stepped away for mere seconds and returned to find Forest at one end of the bed, Trucker in the middle and my big cat, Jack at the other end. I didn’t have the heart to move them.
Another time I found Forest lying solo at the head end of my bed on the fitted sheet. He was partially upside down, snoring. I took his picture that I titled “Little Man on Big Bed.” In it, Forest looks dwarfed by the big bed that was covered with a hunter-green colored sheet.
Applying the top sheet and blankets is yet another challenge because my cats like to slither between the layers and crawl around like they are on a hunt. I dread when my female cat, Joan gets trapped between the layers with one of the boys. They sneak after her like a snake through tall grass and scare her into a growling, meowing fit.
Then there is the infatuation with one cat hiding under the bed sheet while another watches on top and pounces on them through the sheet.
I have a friend who said that while she makes a bed, her cat likes to dive under the top sheet, instantly roll onto its back and stick all four feet up in the air holding onto the top sheet with its claws.
Trucker likes to burrow under blankets and sheets, too. I love to drive him crazy by tickling his nose through the sheet, hearing him grunt, snort and sneeze.
Shortly after I adopted Trucker at the age of 5, I started taking pictures of him with his many blankets. Though I’ve purchased and given him multiple fleece throw blankets, and surrendered my old blankets to him, Trucker still prefers sleeping on my bed.
Nearly every night when I step into my bedroom, Trucker has already pulled back my sheet and blanket from the head of the bed by raking it with his front feet. He usually has positioned himself on the sheet curled up like a fawn.
My biggest mistake is stepping out of the bedroom after placing new sheets on the bed, fresh covers on the pillows and pulling my blanket back so I can slide into bed. I inevitably come back to find Trucker lying on the fitted sheet where I should be and his head cradled in one of my pillows. I feel badly about moving him, so I leave him be and slide into the bed from the other side to sleep peacefully beside him.