Out of Retirement

So there I was last night commenting a trifle smugly on Sophie Scott’s blog about her hunting kittens. Cat, I was thinking, being an elderly boy, and never one for catching the birds, had hung up his Mighty Hunter vest with its myriad pockets and faux macho bravado, and opted for the quieter life.

I should have reflected a little more on his reaction to the rediscovery of the clockwork beetle toy the other day. He chased it up and down the stairs and along the landing. It would have been dead several times over had it been alive in the first place. He generously batted it across to me a few times so I could enjoy the fun too.

I was really a bit chuffed that his inner kitten made such a prolonged appearance. I hadn’t bargained on it reviving an interest in former pastimes.

So bathed and pyjamaed and ready for bed, I went out to get him in from his garden mooch. He was very lively. Springing about in the summer night. He didn’t seem too keen to come in. Then he pounced on something and the penny dropped. He’d got a mouse. It was still alive and he was enjoying carrying it around and apparently  showing it the different parts of the garden.

Actually, I think maybe he was wondering where to dispatch it. He knows from previous experience that I draw the line  at him bringing his prey through the front door. So it looked like we could be in the garden for some time.

Cat dropped the mouse a couple of times and quickly grabbed it again. Then he dropped it once more, and the mouse, who might want to consider trying out for the England team, shot behind him and disappeared under my car. Cat was looking wildly in quite the wrong direction. He didn’t give up easily, but after a few minutes I could see his heart wasn’t in it anymore, so I picked him up. Inside, he contented himself by giving a few threatening sniffs in a couple of corners of the flat, then laid down his gun and allowed me to give him his supper.


9 thoughts on “Out of Retirement

  1. Poor Mouse. Cats can be so cruel but I’m glad it lived to see another day.

    Bertha loves to play with some little toy mice the Kittens were given for Christmas. There are two in the house (somewhere – probably under the sofa again) and she found one at my Mum’s last week. Her particular favourite move is to flick it straight up in the air and then pounce on it when it drops. I sincerely hope she does not find any mice when out and about! Sunday was very unpleasant.

    • I know you won’t want to hear this, but I think you may need to prepare yourself Sophie.
      I remember Cat playing with a mouse in the garden years ago. It was like a game of Hide-and Seek. Cat would drop mouse and turn away, to all appearances counting up to ten, then turn back and catch mouse once more. This went on for a while. The mouse looked more fed up than traumatised, but I managed to distract Cat and mouse made good its escape.

      • 5 cats in the last 30 years and none of them have ever brought home a mouse. Only birds and very few apiece. I’m hoping the Kittens follow the trend if I wish hard enough.

        I once tried to dissuade one of the neighbours cats from playing with a mouse which was hiding in my flowerbed. He was there for over an hour. I don’t know if the mouse finally got away.

  2. Our Moggy still catches various wildlife snacks: he brings them in while I’m not in and eats them, usually in the kitchen behind a certain chair, dissecting out the bitter gall bladder and leaving nothing else behind.

    Its just natural, really. He’s 16 and still game.

    • Ah same age as Cat! Cat was a fairly dedicated moth hunter in his youth. Lots of acrobatics and snatching them out of the air. I didn’t see him with a mouse last year, but it seems like he is still keeping his paw in.
      My friend has two cats who are fearsome hunters. they catch squirrels and eat them, leaving just their tails…

  3. They seem to have hunting preferences. I had one cat that just moused while the others chased birds. And another that was an insect hunter, returning home with his face all covered with cobwebs to terrorize moths.

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