Cat

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Kittens, housecats, and large cats (all f) are carnivorous domestic animals and can be tamed with tripe, food/cram/K-/C-rations, fortune cookies, edible non-vegan corpses if they are fresh, and some other comestibles.

Eating the corpse of a domestic cat of any size is like cannibalism: unless you are an orc or a caveman, this will give you the aggravate monster intrinsic, but (unlike cannibalism) will not decrease your luck. The relevant message is "You feel that eating the <type of cat> was a bad idea." While you should not sacrifice a former pet that died tame, offering a cat corpse is otherwise safe.

The famous "Schrödinger's cat" can sometimes be found in a large box dropped by a quantum mechanic - either dead or alive. Just as in quantum physics, its state is determined only the moment you observe it by opening the box.

Types of cat

Kitten

The kitten is one of three possible starting pets, the others being dogs and ponies (for Knights). They will grow up into housecats after they kill enough monsters.

The kitten and its grown up forms are sometimes better fighters than newly started characters, and can be used to fight for you in the early stages of the game. Nevertheless, they may be more vulnerable than you against passive attacks, such as acidic monsters or floating eyes. They are also extremely vulnerable to falling rock traps and rolling boulder traps and many die from these within the first hundred turns of a game.

Housecat

The housecat is a grown-up kitten and is therefore usually encountered as a early player's pet. They are capable of growing up into large cats.

The housecat has the same attack as the kitten, but is slightly slower, and has a higher monster level. In other aspects it's mostly the same as the kitten. As with their brethren, they are excellent fighters to have as companions to early game characters, but remain vulnerable to passive attacks.

Large cat

The large cat is the final form of a grown-up housecat, and is therefore usually encountered as a player's pet (especially with early game characters, as they are easy to obtain by training a starting kitten). It is strong, therefore pet large cats can apport heavy objects, such as a large box with not too heavy contents.

As with their brethren, they are excellent fighters to have as companions to early game characters, but remain vulnerable to passive attacks. Eventually, it may be worthwhile to attempt to upgrade your large cat to another monster using a polymorph trap, especially if you have more than one pet.

Pet cats

Cats are one of the most common pets. Many roles begin the game with one.

Taming wild cats is usually easy, because all sizes of cat are considered domestic animals. Throwing a meaty treat, a safe fresh meat-based corpse, or processed human food at a hostile or peaceful cat will tame it. Throwing any other comestible at a cat will at least render it peaceful, with the exception of cream pies and eggs (which will break on impact).

All meaty treats (tripe rations or meatballs) can be used to train your cat to fetch.

You can #chat with your cat to get an idea of how it is feeling:

  • it will yowl if it is caught in a trap, confused, fleeing, or tameness is getting low.
  • if the cat is leashed, and there is a trap next to it, it will whimper without you #chatting to it. This works even if the trap is undetected.
  • if it will be hungry soon (1000 turns or less), it will mew.
  • if it is hungry, it will meow.
  • the rest of the time it will purr.
Pet type Corpse wt Can carry unassisted in uncursed bag of holding in blessed bag of holding
kitten/little dog 150 51 72 144
housecat/dog 200 / 400 68 / 137 106 / 244 212 /488
large cat/large dog 250 /800 172 / 551 314 / 1072 628 / 2144

Encyclopedia entry

Well-known quadruped domestic animal from the family of
predatory felines (_Felis ochreata domestica_), with a thick,
soft pelt; often kept as a pet. Various folklores have the
cat associated with magic and the gods of ancient Egypt.
 
So Ulthar went to sleep in vain anger; and when the people
awakened at dawn - behold! Every cat was back at his
accustomed hearth! Large and small, black, grey, striped,
yellow and white, none was missing. Very sleek and fat did
the cats appear, and sonorous with purring content.

[ The Cats of Ulthar, by H.P. Lovecraft ]


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