Shira has always
been a quiet cat. She says hello to me, she announces her presence when she
joins me on the bed, and she can be vocal when her food dish is empty. Oh, and
don't forget her many "I want a man NOW!" voices which can be heard
for blocks. Except for that she rarely talked. But motherhood changed that. Now
she talks to her kids.
"Get back here -- you're too little to run down the hall!"
"Don't cry, I'm right here."
"Babies, time to eat!"
"You don't belong under lisa-mom's dresser. Come out now!"
I thought I knew all her voices until early this morning.
Shira is a good mom and would be a fierce hunter if given the chance. (She did
catch, kill and eat a mouse in the yard one day when I was out there with her.
Her instincts have not softened a bit being in the house.) So like any good
catmom, she needs to teach her children to hunt.
Early this morning she kept coming in my room and getting in the nightstand
drawer. Since the drawer is where I keep her favorite toys, I'm used to her
pulling them out and carrying them off. Quite often I find them in or beside the
food dish and I've decided that she considers them prey. Once properly captured
they become food, even if she doesn't eat them.
But this morning she'd gone a bit further. She carried off teasers I keep in
there to play with Peanut and Talia, too. She'd jumped up on the dresser to
steal the toys we'd used last night for playing with the babies. And as she
carried them out of the room one at a time, she'd make her kitten calling noises
-- close to the same as she uses for calling them to eat -- but with a slightly
more ferocious sound. All of the purloined toys ended up at the foot of the
stairs where I found them this morning looking somewhat worse for the
experience. I'm convinced she was trying to teach her naughty kids
"Look, mom killed this for you."
"Here, you kill it and then we'll eat it."
"Wait, then pounce. Tear it apart with your teeth once you've caught
with your teeth and shake it violently. Once it stops moving, it's dead."
I don't know if the little ones have the killer instinct that would cause them
to kill and eat a mouse, but I do know they are capable of destroying a feather
teaser in mere minutes. It appears Shira has taught them well.
Cat Tails, Pg25)
2003 lisa s vasa