Over the years, we've had several cats and a couple of big, outdoor dogs. But big dogs smell if you don't bathe them and they're just too hard to bathe in winter. So, I've mostly been a cat person.
Titi and Daisy became pals until Daisy died of renal failure at thirteen. And I swore I'd never have another cat.
Cha Cha is a short-haired black male. Titi and the cat bonded. Scooter was terrified of the kitten. For awhile, Cha Cha thought Titi was his mother. And let me tell you, it freaked my husband out to see a kitten trying to nurse a dog. Especially a dog that never had puppies.
And that's when the fun really began.
My nephew had taught Cha Cha how to use the doggie door and he eventually grew big enough to jump the fence and venture out into the big bad world. At first, Cha Cha would bring in baby birds. We'd take them out of his mouth and set them free. Then he started bringing in dead mice and dead birds, leaving them as "gifts" on my daughter's bedroom floor. When we didn't appreciate his "gifts," he brought us another live bird and this time, he turned it loose in the house.
Do you have any idea how hard it is to catch a wren that doesn't want to be caught? I finally captured the little bird and tossed it out the front door.
Next, there was a live mouse. The cat dropped it in the kitchen while I was cooking and refused to catch it or kill it as it scurried under the dinging room table. I stood with spatula in hand, yelling at the cat to get the mouse. The cat laid in the floor an began casually licking his paws, looking at me as if I were a nuisance. Before I could grab a shoe and kill the thing myself, Titi ran under the table and killed it for me. And that's when I learned my dog is a champion mouser. But Cha Cha is a mini panther and he likes to hunt.
I came home one day to find a dead blue jay in my dining room. Cha Cha faked innocence but I'd had enough. I wanted to get rid of the cat, but Lauren loves that evil beast my husband nicknamed Satan. And I love my daughter. So, Cha Cha stayed.
After the blue jay incident, Cha Cha brought in a baby rabbit and turned it loose in my office while I was trying to write. I had a time catching it. When I picked up the little fellow, his little back legs were just a pumping,his heart a pounding. Talking to him in soft tones, I carried him outside and set him free while my husband held the cat hostage in the house until the rabbit got away. Or so we thought...
The next day, Cha Cha brought me a rabbit's foot--a bloody baby rabbit's foot. He left the mutilated bunny carcass, in the yard.
We're always finding dead, brids, mice, rats, moles, and voles in the yard. Cha Cha is quite the hunter. He once brought in a live squirrel and turned it loose in my bathroom.
I tried to catch the squirrel but it ran down the hall and into my daughter's room. My husband came at it with a baseball bat, wanting to bash it's little head in. I yelled at him and threw him out the room so I could catch the squirrel. Hubby yelled at me, telling me squirrels had sharp teeth and claws and would, "tear me up."
But the squirrel just looked scared. He was sitting on my daughter's pillow, his little chest heaving. The cat circled my feet, growling low and deep in his throat. I talked calmly to the squirrel, trying to gain its trust so I could pick him up. My husband raised the bat and told me to stay back.
"You can't catch a squirrel," he said. "It's a wild animal."
Naturally, I had to prove him wrong.
So, I picked up the baby squirrel, talking softly to it and stroking its tiny head. He curled sharp claws around my index finger and gave me a look of desperation. His claws tightened as if to say he'd fight to the finish if I harmed him, but the cat was growling and the Squirrel was terrified.
I was feeling rather cocky about it so when the cat brought in a flying squirrel, I thought I could use my animal talents to rescue that little critter too. The cat cornered the squirrel in the bathroom, so I kicked the cat out and shut the door. I squatted on my haunches and spoke calmly to the critter. It sat huffing and puffing beside the toilet, eying me with suspicion.
I approached slowly, as I had with the tree squirrel, talking softly. Moving cautiously, I reached for the little fellow with my right hand and cupped his bottom with my left hand.
And that's when he bit me.
He clamped down on my index finger and started gnawing me like an overcooked sirloin. I screamed and tried to pull him off but he dug down deeper. I tried shaking him off like a sticky booger, but he held on tight.
Finally, I lowered my hand to the floor until his feet touched the tile. And that's when he finally let go...and flew over my shoulder, scaring ten years off my life!
Now I was trapped in the bathroom with a vicious attack squirrel no bigger than my palm, but that little sucker could fly! And he was between me and the door.
Now, some people would say, "Just close off the doggie door so the cat can't get out." In fact, I've been told that alot. But Titi loves the freedom the doggie door gives her so the doggie door stays. I've threatened to get rid of Cha Cha, but my daughter loves him. And as much as I claim to hate that cat, he kind of grows on you. But just when I thought Cha Cha and I had made our peace, he decided to get even with me for releasing the squirrels.
I came home from work one afternoon and rushed to the bathroom. It was a bit of an emergency so I didn't take time to shut the door. Then Cha Cha walked in and dropped a full grown rat--not mouse--at my feet. I screamed and picked up my feet and the rat ran to the corner and looked at me with red beady eyes. I yelled at the cat to kill it, but he just sprawled out on the bathroom rug and started grooming himself. So, I screamed for Titi.
Titi came running but stopped at the doorway. The rat huddled in the corner. I sat on the john with my feet off the floor, yelling, "Get the rat, Titi! Kill it!"
Titi whimpered but didn't enter. She started in and backed out. My bathroom is small and apparently, my dog is claustrophobic. So I was on my own.
The rat started looking around for an avenue of escape and I couldn't just jump up and shut the door. Let's just say it wasn't possible for me to stand up and leave at the moment. So, I grabed the plunger sitting beside the toilet, thinking I could cover the rat long enough to finish my business and pull up my pants. But the rat was so big, it wouldn't fit under the plunger. It's head and tail stuck out. So, there I sat, pants around my ankles, holding a rat hostage under a toilet plunger.
Not my finest moment.
But the rat had to die. So I raised the plunger and started beating it to death. Not a
As soon as the rat stopped twitching, I pulled up my pants, washed my hands, and ran to the kitchen for the broom and dust pan. Once I tossed out the rat, I tossed out the cat. I closed off the doggie door and left the cat outside until the next day. But did Cha Cha learn his lesson? Oh no.
I tried catching the bird with my hands the way I did the wren, but the bird tried to peck my eyes out! And it wouldn't just fly out the window either. So, I got a broom and knocked the bird off the ceiling fan and into the trashcan. Then I threw a blanket over the trashcan and tossed the bird out the window. Lauren yelled at the cat and he immediately started snuggling her. And she forgave him. I still haven't.