My downstairs neighbours usually aren’t “cat people” (by which I mean that at least one of them is abjectly terrified of cats). But they aren’t “mouse people” times a hundred, which is approximately how many mice we could hear stampeding around behind their fridge. Enter Mojo.
Now Mojo is not very good at catching mice. One time he found one and batted it around for a bit. Eventually he lost sight of the mouse and I watched him sit there, confused, peering all over the room hoping to spot the errant rodent. Which was, at that very moment, hiding between Mojo’s own front paws. Yeah, directly below his quivering nostrils. So much for cats being the perfect predators.
All this to say that my hopes were not high, but I like to help a neighbour in need, so I opened my apartment door and let the little shaggy bear loose in the house. (Juno, my more cautious female cat, wanted no part of the action and refused to leave her sunbeam.)
About a half-hour later, I heard him trotting back up both flights of stairs, making a strange strangled mrrowling noise. There was something in his mouth, and he’d brought it up all 30 stairs to show me.
Figure 1 depicts the little guy finally doing what he was born to do. Scare mice to death? In the back of my closet, like he did in my old apartment, so they basically liquefied over the long weekend and stunk up the whole house? Nope, not any more: this was a perfect kill, its little body limp and barely even bloodied, one eye popped out of existence, the other staring blankly into eternity. I praised the kitteh extravagantly and delicately disposed of his prey when he wasn’t looking. Soon enough he wandered back downstairs, and an hour later, heralded by more of the weird gargling mmmmrrrllling, he was back.
Several hours later, he outdid himself and chased yet one more mouselet out into the open. My downstairs neighbour, the one who’s animal-phobic, was home alone when Mojo found mouse #3, and with nobody to rely on except himself, he experienced an epic moment of truth and managed to trap and kill the final mouse independently, in the process conquering his fears of both rodents and felines.
I’m very proud of everybody. And I think today was pretty much the bestest day a cat could ever have.