She clung to the side of the shrubbery like a gray shadow writhing in terror. All big eyes and claws and bristled tail, the half-grown kitten would have levitated if she could have as the big, growly, barking dogs advanced on her. This was my greeting as I left the house with Sam and WLD this morning.
Why was I so unaware? Because as a deafie I cannot hear the commotion outside. I simply thought the dogs were exceptionally eager for their morning constitutional.
One of my neighbors with snapping and barking mid-sized dogs held them back. The kitten ran up the side of a shrub – it’s like climbing walls that are as much space as solid – and then leaped into the air. She landed like a slinky on four legs atop the bush, horrified that there were now two more savage beasts in her immediate vicinity. “Cannon to right of them, Cannon to left of them, Cannon in front of them, Volley’d and thunder’d…” (Charge of the Light Brigade).
Where had the kitten come from? Condo cat rarely allows strays in his fiefdom. Condo cats are all indoor cats except for Garfield the Magnificent.
“Is that your cat?” my neighbor asked.
I shook my head. “Nope.”
Pulling Mr. Sam back, I said, “Kitty doesn’t want to play, Sam.” He loves cats. And I mean LOVES ❤ cats. As in, let me lick you sweetheart and I never ever bite, but this terrified relative of Bast was having none of that. Meanwhile, Sam was all atwitter. Oh, look! A new playmate! What fun!
It all depends on your definition of fun. The cat was not having fun in any of its various permutations.
WLD, meanwhile, was all aquiver watching the other dogs and the kitten. Because what could be more fun than pandemonium outside the front door first thing in the morning?
Meanwhile – quivering and quaking on the top of the bushes: Poor kitten.
While I got my pups out of the way the neighbor lady was able to dash her growly dogs back inside, then run back and scoop the cat up. “She’s so sweet!” she said. And the little thing just lay in her hand with legs hanging down limp as overcooked noodles. No hissing, biting, clawing. Thank Mother Bast someone rescued me!
And then the woman and kitten were on the way down the walk to the cat rescue foster mother in the complex. I figured that was going to be a no-go as a few of her cats are sick, but she might have suggestions.
Meanwhile, one of the neighbors I don’t know well came out of his upstairs apartment and was jogging towards his car to go to work when I asked, “Do you have a cat?”
He slowed down and gave me an odd look. “Yes.”
“Do you know where your cat is right now?” I pointed over towards the women huddled on a nearby porch. “There’s a half-grown gray kitten out here that’s scared to death.”
He turned around and charged upstairs. I would have charged over to the cat, but whatever.
I kept walking and heard from the cat rescue lady that she could not take the kitten because her cats are sick.
The other woman had taken the little thing back home to lock in the bathroom while she was at work. That’s the lady with the two snarly dogs. What a relaxing life experience for a kitten to be on the other side of the door from two barking dogs.
A turn around the parking lot and I saw the guy on his way out again. He smiled, waved and said, “Thank you. That was my cat.”
Home safe and sound. Another form of animal rescue – before something terrible happens – find their people and get them back where they belong.
It takes a village.