state of the cat

She caught a mouse yesterday and brought it to me; I think what she wanted was to carry it into the house, where she could play with it at leisure. If she was a game-dog, people would say she has a soft mouth, because she didn’t hurt the mouse – that’s if you don’t count damp mouse-fur and terror. She dropped it, and it hunkered down and trembled. She let it run off, and grabbed it again and trotted back toward the house door. Naturally I wasn’t about to open the door for her. Mice are vermin and deserve to die – this is what I know from experience. What a nest of mice inside a building can become is almost beyond imagination, unless you’ve seen an infestation of the nasty little things. They stink so you can tell they’re present just by the smell. They multiply geometrically. Hundreds of mice in no time at all, chewing into everything. Ugh.

Mice are also cute, like tiny living toys that run along the floor. My cat put hers down again, and let it run off with its tail sticking up and out.

This is how you get a cat to release its prey: ignore the prey, but give the cat lots of praise and petting. Then while it’s distracted, whatever it caught gets away. I was of two minds about the mouse – yes, vermin, but cute as a wind-up toy – but I waited, and sure enough Greymouse lost interest and let it run under a flower-pot. It vanished. About half a minute later, she noticed and pounced at something in that direction, then pursued it into the neighbour’s yard. I believe it got away.

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