CHAOSTOCOSMOS

Monday, 10 April 2006

Intruder Alarm

So, here I was minding my own business at the keyboard, dog at my feet this morning, when suddenly, a singular caterwaul broke the morning's silence. Holly's sense of direction, it has to be said, is somewhat better than mine. As I began to check various directions, she bolted straight out towards the back utility room.

Nanoseconds later, Khan came rushing through the house at the speed of a bullet and fired himself out of the front door between the gaps in the trellised "kiddy gate". He was closely followed by a ginger cat of unknown origins, who was catching up on him rapidly as he passed through the house and similarly shot out of the front door.

Kitty was right behind the stranger. Considering that all three cats only had to traverse one 12 foot room and the 6 foot wide hallway to reach the door, either the dog wasn't trying or she is supremely stupid. She failed to catch any of them!

Betty was observing all this, calmly and serenely, from the safety of a windowsill and Mico was in the garden, not far from the front of the house. It all happened far to quick for him too. When I took the dog out to investigate what she'd missed (she wouldn't settle until she'd made sure the intruder was gone), Mico was just sitting there, transfixed, with a shell-shocked "WTF was that?" look on his face.

And, as we strolled down the garden, Balu ambled lazily up from the vines opposite to see what was going on. "You've missed all the fun, lad.", I thought.

In truth, there did not seem to be a great deal of animosity towards this stranger and the disturbance was minimal: everyone returned to whatever they were doing very quickly once he'd left and it is the second time I have seen him loitering around recently, which probably means he's been around much more that I haven't been aware of. Presumably now, he's "cased the joint" and got up the confidence to come in the back window in search of the food that is served out in that back room.
No doubt, this will open a new chapter in the tales of the feline frolics.

Sunday, 2 April 2006

Rabbit Rescue Employs New Security Chief

Yes, boys and girls, rabbits are in season again! Well, maybe the rabbits were in season how ever long ago it takes to make little baby ones, but rabbit hunting season (for cats) has begun again this year.

We have too many rabbits here and they do cause considerable damage to crops, especially the vines and, for that maybe the "responsible" thing to do would be to ignore it and let the cats get on with what is natural to them to control the population. Unfortunately, when they bring them, alive, into my house and the poor little things are screaming in fear of their captors, I find that I simply I do not have what it takes to be an accessory to murder.

So, one dear little thing spent the hot afternoon in a cool cat basket to rest and recuperate from the ordeal, after being inspected, given a little milk and some TLC in lieu of psychological counselling. When they are this small, I' m not sure that their chances of survival are good alone, but I've taken him (or her) to a spot where, hopefully, it will find some friends or, better yet, a new mummy.

Let the dog see the rabbit ...

I generally thought this meant so that they can eat them. Here was the curious thing and, I suspect it was because Holly picked up from my caring for the little bunny, that this was the right thing to do. So that is what she did. Just like she has done in the past with kittens. Strange and wonderful dog.
All afternoon, each time a cat went to go near the rabbit, she would stick her nose between cat and basket and give them a short, gruff bark and a nudge out of the way. These cats, her "older children", knew she meant it too, because I watched as they rolled over quickly into defensive postures, then slunk away.

A German Shep/Presa Canario mix is probably not what you'd normally consider as suitable as a babysitter for small rabbits (nor for small kittens, for that matter). I keep expecting her to revert to nature and behave like a dog one day, but it really shows no signs of occurring!

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