Prince is a new acquisition and I don't know his history. He seems like an abandoned house cat. When he drops something accidentally, he automatically hides or retreats from me, until I come up and stroke his head and talk to him sweetly. I don't own anything at all of any value, so I don't see myself getting angry at him for dropping or breaking something. Is this a natural cat reaction when startled by something falling or could it be that he was punished physically for dropping things in his former life? If it's the latter, I'd really like to work on reassuring him that he'll never be punished. After all, if he drops something breakable, it's because I shouldn't have left it around to start with... It's also very noticeable that he will NEVER touch anything, even if it's obviously a cat toy, without looking up at me for permission first and until I encourage him to sit on / play with / touch it.