Feline hard done by

Steve Kendall | Bendigo Weekly | 18-Mar-2016

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Tommy was eating Nina’s food, and it had to stop.

Nina is our slinky black cat, and Tommy is the neighbourhood wanderer. He’s not a feral so I imagine he just runs around from house to house eating where he can.

It seems like a cat thing to do.

Anyway, I caught him tucking in one evening and decided enough was enough so I shooed him away.

He was caught with such a start he ran into the house.

This is not good, as even Nina does not live in the house so Tommy was off shedding fur on our carpets.

When I finally found him he was scratching his claws on the armchair, but he stopped when he saw me and ran under the bed.

My cat-free-zone house was being invaded, and the cat seemed to have the upper. Now I don’t mind cats, and think people who don’t like them have a screw loose, but after a few minutes of cat chasing I was starting to see the haters’ point. 

Thing is, cats are cleverer than us so that’s why people dislike them. It’s not about destruction of native animals, it’s about being outwitted. If we really wanted to stop the destruction of native animals we would eradicate humans.

Anyway, Tommy seemed to have the upper hand at this point and nestled in under the bed in the middle of the long-suffering Mrs Kendall boxes of CDs.

I thought I would be smart and coax him out gently. Tommy just glared, quite liking the look of the a new home under the bed.

He was set for the evening, or night, or week.

I opened the door to the verandah, hoping he would take the hint. No luck. I then closed the door to the hall, left the verandah open and started up the noises again.

Mrs K had left a riding crop on the verandah from her training session with the horse – that’s my story and I am sticking to it – and I thought Tommy might need some gentle persuasion from the crop.

He was now hiding on the CD box between it and the bed, so it was not easy to try to encourage him out.

Prod, prod with the crop only made him growl at me.

I told him off and prodded him some more, but he would not take the hint.

Then I remembered cats hate vacuum cleaners, so in a rarely performed task I took the vacuum cleaner out of the cupboard. After a few minutes I found the ON switch and pushed the nozzle in the general direction of Tommy.

Tommy was and is the first cat I have ever met who did not seem to mind the noise of the vacuum cleaner. He just hunkered down for a row.

He was yowling and a bit annoyed, so I stopped.

Though not keen on his squatting, I did not want to stress him too much.

I called on Mrs K who had been oblivious to all of this.

“Move the bed,” she said. Which with hindsight seemed a good idea. But first we had to move eight boxes of CDs.

“Do you ever listen to these?” I asked, with a view to recycling, but Mrs K wanted every last one.

So now we had a pile of CD boxes and a cat under the bed.

The bed is king-size and wooden, and was not an easy move.

Mrs K saw her chance and we moved the bed down the room, with the flick of the wrist Tommy was covered in a blanket and removed without fuss.

This had taken about 45 minutes and I was fed up. 

As we pushed the bed back the upright parted company with the frame and one corner collapsed. Last week’s heatwave had been the last straw on the glue.

Now, I can’t be certain but I am sure I heard a cat laughing as I spent the next hour glueing and strapping the bed back together.

I had seen a sticker on a car earlier that week. So many cats, so few recipes, it said.

I had written the driver off as a tosser, but he may have a point. 

Twitter@stevekendall1

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