Target & Cat

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Target and Cat


Over the years there have been several cats, stray or otherwise which have frequented the property where I live. I would see them in the early morning whilst accompanying Target, my Jack Russell terrier on his early morning strolls in the field. His nose to the ground, with the scent of wild rabbits and cats in the dew, he was often oblivious of my need for the warmth of the house. Often I need to remind him of his purpose in having me standing in my slippers, shivering on frosty mornings, while he pees on every new scent.

For a while there was a tabby skulking through the tall grass on the edge of the field and on other occasions a black and white three legged cripple who never came very close but seemed intent on some feline mission or other, but lately I have not seen either one, and in fact the strays seemed to have deserted the neighbourhood – until early last winter. Like the winter of 1996, the winter of 2008 was particularly brutal for the Hawaii of Canada -- Vancouver Island. Against the whiteness of the snow that winter, I often saw a large gold coloured long haired cat sneaking along the side of the barn or strolling down the car tracks in the driveway. As the weeks progressed, it sometimes happened that when I opened the front door I would surprise this same orange- gold cat crouched on the porch.

Considering the depth of snow and the cold, I began leaving food and water outside for the cat -- and this from a guy who is not crazy about cats. It was not long, perhaps a couple or three weeks and the cat stopped bolting whenever it saw me. Soon it was rubbing against me and purring after it had been fed. By spring “Cat” was accompanying the walk Target and I took each morning, and in the evening, when Target and I headed for the field to play tennis…I hit the ball -- he retrieved it. Cat would make me smile by hiding in the tall grass and making every attempt to ambush Target.

I think the final integration of Cat into the family came last night while sitting out at the firepit, when Cat brought Target the gift of a live mouse. She has brought them dead to the front door ealier in the spring, as all cats do from time to time, but to have her deliver one for Target’s amusement, totally amazed me. Yes, I rescued the mouse or at least gave it room and time to escape. I hope, a much wiser and quicker mouse than the cat? Well, the cat eats dog food and the dog eats cat food. I guess that’s what happens; I guess that’s what cats and dogs do.


True story by Bob Long of Canada



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Bob Long
True Story?: