Pack Hunting

by Cat Crazy

Tig BemusedAll those animal experts will tell you that cats are solitary hunters. Unlike dogs, they don’t hunt in packs. Well, hate to be the outlier data point here, but I beg to differ.

With my previous batch of cats, Tiggin especially was convinced that this vegetarian would never eat such disgusting stuff as tofu if I only had better hunting skills. (She proved that again and again by begging for scraps of my meal. When offered a piece of tofu something or other, she’d literally roll her lip up in a grimace and walk away.)  She was forever going down into my ancient stone basement where she’d occasionally capture a mouse that she’d bring up to me in the middle of the night. Now, I’d like to clarify that I’m not afraid of mice. However, when a cat wakes you from a sound sleep and drops a live mouse on you at 1 a.m., you’re going to bolt up from bed and scream…at least I did.  That would immediately lead to the mouse and the cats making a hasty retreat off the sides of my very tall 4-poster bed, and then the fun would begin.

Tiggin and her “siblings” would run around my bedroom as I got up, flipped on a light, and reached for a sheet of cardboard and a glass jar I kept for just these moments.  We’d race around together, me trying to save the mouse’s life by capturing it in the jar so I could put it outside, and the cats thinking that they were finally teaching the vegetarian how to hunt for a proper meal.  Sometimes, after 30 minutes of dashing about all over the house trying to save the mouse’s life, I’d just give up and go back to bed.  The next morning I’d awake to find the now thoroughly dead mouse laid at the threshold of my bedroom door.  Since I’d once again proven myself inept, undisciplined, and lazy, they were offering the mouse to me as a snack, but they were chastising me for giving up too soon and missing all the fun of chasing down the prey (thereby failing my hunting lesson once again).

My current crew seems to do the same with their toy mice. One of them will start flipping the toy in the air, and then everyone will start dashing about trying to find where it landed, and great noise and enthusiastic play ensue.  Late at night or early in the morning they will make the same kind of moaning cries that Tiggin did as she was carrying a live mouse up to my bedroom, except that, fortunately, all they are bringing me is a toy one.

(c) Copyright 2014, PeggyMalnati. All rights reserved. Photos my own.