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Editor's Corner: Caterwauling in the Doud household

What used to be a one-cat household is turning into a four-cat household very quickly.

I am talking about the house we live in, that is owned by this cat which rents it out to us for two small bowls of kibble and two small cans of wet food a day.

She allows us to live in the house provided we do all the things she needs done.

Just the other day, for example, the cat got a postcard in the mail announcing it was time for her checkup. I am not sure how often she is supposed to be checked up, but I think it corresponds to the days on which the vet’s boat payments are due.

After the exam, the vet pronounced her to be in ship shape, and said she was a very well behaved cat. When I heard this, I was sure the vet had been looking at the wrong cat, and that our cat must have been hiding somewhere in the clinic.

The cat has been joined by another cat, one called a ragamuffin. This cat is about the size and shape of a small black bear, but unlike a bear, is very friendly, and even smiles. You don’t see many cats that smile. For instance, our landlady cat usually wears a perpetual frown.

The ragamuffin cat, though, seems very happy all the time.

When the two cats come together at evening snack time, they hiss at each other a little bit, but then get down to the business of wolfing down their food.

The other night, though, we heard this horrible screeching. It sounded like a train throwing on its brakes; it sounded like a siren.

I looked out the window, and there were two more cats, both big gray ones. Our cat and the ragamuffin were standing their ground, hissing and caterwauling at the other two cats, who seemed to want to go into the back yard.

They tried to outflank the ragamuffin and our cat, but it didn’t work.

No blood was drawn in this facedown, but it made me wonder why the two new cats came around in the first place.

Maybe they heard the grub was not bad. Maybe they had been led to believe the ragamuffin and our cat were pushovers.

Who knows these things?

The ragamuffin is not our cat, although she behaves as though she owns the place and is just waiting for the original cat to turn it over to her. Ha! Fat chance.

Not being much of a cat fan, I don’t think about them too much, but I do wonder where they go at night. They’re hardly ever around unless they happen to be in the house.

During the day, all they do is lie around.

They are almost useless. You never see one in the morning, for example, going down the street wearing a hard hat and carrying a lunch bucket.

Cats on farms do catch mice, it is said, but it also is said that the mice seem to be holding their own. If the cats were doing their job, there would be a mouse shortage.


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