The cat who allows us to share her house has been looking over her shoulder lately, on the lookout for Grant Sizemore of the American Bird Conservancy. Sizemore wants us to round up as many as 80 million unowned outdoor cats, take them to the pound and put them to sleep.
He doesn’t mean, of course, letting them actually sleep. What he really means is they all should be sent to that big litterbox in the sky.
Sizemore claims those 80 million unowned cats that live outdoors are responsible for the deaths of up to 3.7 billion birds and 20.7 billion mammals (mostly mice) every year in the United States.
If what he says is true, all those cats would have to make 305 kills a year.
I can tell Sizemore right now that our cat doesn’t make that many kills, even though she spends a fair amount of her time outside. In fact, I’m not sure she makes any kills at all. When she was younger (and we were, too) she occasionally would bring a deceased mouse or vole to the back porch and leave it for us to admire. But now she is in her middle years, and has gained a few pounds (as we have), she spends most of her time outside lurking in the bushes.
There are blue jays that visit our yard, and if one of them happens to land where the cat can see it, the cat gets into her hunting pose and attempts to creep forward. The bird spots her right away, and if it looks like the cat actually will try to spring, the bird flaps its wings a few times and flies to the top of the back fence.
The cat these days saves all of her springing power for the food bowl.
If Sizemore tries to haul her in, I am sure her feeding habits would be good evidence for her to be granted bail.
By the way, Sizemore, nobody owns a cat. It’s the other way around.