Field of Science

You just don't smell like you.

Our two black and white girls get along as well as any two unrelated felines can.  But feline tranquility has encountered a bit of disruption for last couple of days. The event that led to some unidirectional "I-don't-know-you" hissing and biffing, and the resulting hurt feelings of the recipient, was an annual checkup at the vet for the younger of the two, and that included a bit of grooming that ended with a bath and blow dry leaving a very fluffy cat even fluffier, but also smelling a bit like a floozy, a cat version of cheap perfume.  Now here's the question.  Why use scented shampoo on an animal, even a cute female animal, other than to please the owner, but pity the poor kitty whose #1 companion now hisses whenever she approaches, demonstrating that cats identify individuality more by smell than sight.  So why not offer scentless shampoo for the discriminating customer?  Or would it still wash off the "this-is-me" smell briefly erasing identity?  At least this only lasts for 2-3 days, and only happens once a year, and is not quite symmetrical, which is to say that when the tables are turned, she with the sensitive nose gets a curious "who-are-you?" cautious greeting, but no hissing.  Beside she is so put out at the affront of disrupting her daily schedule replaced by a very unwelcome physical and all that comes with it that she hardly notices anything else other than her own hurt feelings. 

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