Nellie’s parents have known since she was adopted that she had a strong appetite for food. Because of her food motivation, she’s always struck them as more dog-like than cat-like, and they’ve even been able to teach her a few skills thanks to her love of goodies.
Nellie’s mother, Allison Riebel, told The Dodo, “She lives to eat instead of eats to live.” “She adores both the cat food and her cat treats.” We take advantage of her fondness for food to perform new feats. She’s gotten quite proficient at sit, high fives, and fetch.”
Nellie frequently finds herself trapped or into areas she shouldn’t be while on her hunt for food — and even when her parents think something is safe from her pranks, Nellie is quick to prove them wrong.
Riebel is a veterinary student who just chose to bake cookies for her fellow volunteers at the University of Illinois’ Wildlife Medical Clinic. She put some of the cookies in a sealed Tupperware container, thinking they’d be secure, but they weren’t.
“Nellie opened the container and dumped all the cookies on the floor,” Riebel explained. “The odd thing is, I know she pulled them all out separately because the cookies would have shattered if she had just knocked them out of the container.” However, they were strewn around our dining room floor, with nibbles taken from each. So she pulled them out one at a time, cut them up individually, and did it softly enough not to be observed.”
Nellie knocked something over, so Riebel took a break from studying and went downstairs to check what was up — and discovered her cookies on the floor, each with a bite eaten out of it. Nellie didn’t even bother to hide the fact that it was her, instead seemed delighted with herself for having found such delectable goodies.
“She didn’t appear to be guilty,” Riebel observed. “She does a fantastic job with it. It’s both irritating and amusing. She’s quite pleased with herself.”
As Nellie continues her lifelong search for food, it appears that her parents may need to find Tupperware that is a bit more cat-proof.