My "old lady stairs" for Athena arrived, and I set them up for her last night. Both she and Hamilton found me dragging them along the floor over next to the bed, grunting, highly entertaining. I couldn't even get out "There..now you have stairs Ath.." before I noticed that Hamilton had already gone up and down them TWICE. Athena watched him and then jumped onto the bed with a precarious scrabbling WHOMP; I guess she figured the stairs were for the cat (head in hand, wearily rubs own forehead).
Athena has a tendency to glaze over when she's not one hundred percent sure what she's supposed to do or when she's feeling particularly silly (see my chapter on her Agility demonstration), and when we started from floor, she went up one step and then jumped off sideways, then two steps (jumped off) then three steps (fell off) while I attempted to soften her premature exit by catching her and telling her to please
"No. Again." I instructed her, and hunching her shoulders up as usual when she's tickled with herself, Athena sashayed up the steps without any problems and gracefully stepped onto the bed. She looked at me with her idiotic opossum toothy grin of pride, making me wonder if she pretends
not to understand something in order to have a joke at my expense. Sometimes I think she's like a collapsing toddler who is careening side to side laughing, deliberately losing her balance while you try to hold her upright, telling her you know perfectly well that she is able to walk. Sure enough, I had her go up the stairs again just in case, and she climbed them like she has always had bed-stairs.
For anyone interested, the steps came from HelpYourPets.com, and they are very sturdy. I got the four-step version with dark gray carpet.
For the cat.
So far, unless I remind her, Athena still launches herself into bed from practically out in the hallway.
We'll keep working on it.