Monday, December 04, 2006

Attack Of The Killer Cat

In 2005 I lost a 12 year battle with my family. I had held strong, but in the spring of that year I finally relented and we got a pet. A cute kitten that showed early signs of domesticatabilty (is that a word?). We were wrong.

Last night it attacked our 8 year old daughter A. Again. For some reason our now grown cat, Aslan, enjoys stalking and attacking her. She again came to us with a shredded arm, actually two small scratches and a bite mark, crying that Aslan would not leave her alone. He does not do this to anyone else in the family. We have witnessed the horrific attacks and she does not do anything to provoke him. He just has it out for her.

I believed Aslan's aggressive tendencies was a solution to a problem that presented itself a couple months ago. We had a mouse in the house. It woke us up at about 2AM one night when the brilliant rodent fell into our kitchen sink and couldn’t get out. It was bouncing and banging into cups and plates and making a racket. I tried to resolve the matter with a fly swatter. It was 2AM and my brain was not functioning fully yet.

The mouse somehow jumped out of the sink, and Michelle and I were able to corner it in the great room.

“Michelle, I have an idea. Go get Aslan- quick” I said. Michelle brought the cat down, handed him to me, and I pointed Aslan at the invader. After a few minutes Aslan finally spotted the creature and stopped trying to eat me. I let him down, and he charged the mouse. He chased it around the room and cornered it back in the kitchen. When the mouse faltered or slowed, Aslan seemed to back off allowing the mouse time to consider its next move. The little thing seemed to be ready to die of heart failure. It didn’t need to worry. Aslan just sat there and stared and would have probably continued until daybreak if I hadn’t intervened. I tried to smack the mouse again with the flyswatter (goofball), and succeeded. It laughed at me, and made a break for it.

It escaped down the stairs to the basement and disappeared as Aslan looked on, losing interest.

My words of advice if you are in the same place as I was a couple years ago- do not give in. The joy that kitten brought to our home has faded. Yes, the girls love him, and are glad we have him, but an all terrain vehicle would have been better. If you are a cat lover, my sincere apologies. I mean no offense.

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Anonymous said...

When I was a kid, we had a cat that only attacked my sister. It took us a little while until we figured out why. She used to wear those barrettes with the ribbons dangling from them. The cat would attack the ribbons and get her face instead. You might want to make sure your cat isn't attacking something like that rather than actually aiming for your daughter.

Babeth said...

How does Aslan react to being hit by the one he attacks ? This might be important.
He might be attracted to attacking your child because she is young and gentle, lording it over her because she is "lower" in rank than he thinks himself to be, and she won't "fight back".
Whenever one of my cats lashes out at me he will instantly feel my wrath descending on him like Cassius Clay. My mother taught my brothers and me that if a cat attacks you you fight back, blow for blow, hurt for hurt. None of her cats have ever attacked us. And all of them have always adored us.
Cat love comes in different forms... some are for the tough love or "l'amour brute" as we call it here in Belgium. Our Zorro is a fighter and I don't mind getting scratches or bites from him because he knows that when he goes too far my retribution will be swift and hard. He will seek out weaker victims though, and it seems your Aslan might be the same kind of cat: difficult to love and sometimes aggressive, kind to his superiors and nasty to those "below" him. Not every cat is temperamentally suited for families !

DigitalRich said...

Mike- no barrettes or ribbons on our girl A, only a meek and mild mannered petite girl. Which seems to line up with Babeths comment.

Babeth- thanks for the insight. I think you nailed it. I talked to my wife and girls this morning at breakfast and found out she is the only one of my four girls that does not forcefully handle, hug, grab onto or pick-up. Even my smaller 5 year old smothers him. I am sure Aslan sees himself as dominant over A, and we talked to her about what to do. We shall see if that corrects the problem. Thanks.

Meg said...

-Not a Cat lover disclaimer-

This post brought back fond memories of several comic style books from my childhood- 101 ways to kill a cat- or something like that.

I sure hope it stops soon- poor kid!