Years ago I decided that I wanted a pet, specifically a dog. But I also needed a pet that didn’t require a lot of care. So I opted to get a cat that was rumored to act somewhat like a dog.
Bengal cats are the result of the successful pairing of a wild cat (Asian Leopard) and domestic cat. They have broad heads, high cheekbones and the tips of their ears are rounded. The best part is the spotted or swirled marble patterns on their fur, reminders of their wild ancestry. Available information on this cat said they were supposed to go on walks, fetch toys, give a high-five and even swim in the pool with their owners. Practically a dog.
Tass is short for Catastrophe. Soon after she arrived, she climbed up the drapes and couldn’t get down. Next she disappeared into the fireplace and then ran around the house scattered soot all over the furniture and rugs. My husband started calling her Tass-hole.
I’ve not been successful in any training or dog-like activities. When I put a leash on her, she rolled on the ground like she was demon possessed. When I throw something to fetch, she pounces on it, covers it with her body, and then casually licks her paws and looks bored.
I’m not doubting that Bengals are smart, however. Tass learned to flush the toilet by herself. The first time she did this, it was nighttime and my husband was traveling. I can’t tell you how unnerving that was. I’m alone, there’s a stranger in the house…and he’s using the potty.
Tass has spent considerable time training us in her routines. In the mornings, she likes to be fed, receive a back rub, and then let outside to our small backyard. She walks the perimeter of the patio surveying her kingdom and monitoring the birds. Monday was a bit different. Seconds after she went outside I heard her screeching.
I flew out the door and was shocked to see two foxes attacking her. (To be honest, she probably instigated it, she’s pretty territorial and she’s been watching a lot of nature tv shows lately)
Tass was displaying some ninja-like moves that were faster than my eyes could follow but I could certainly hear her. Being a professional and trained to deal with emergencies, I did as you’d expect. Ran outside in my bathrobe, screaming loud enough to wake the neighbors while waving my hands up in the air to look intimidating. It worked. The foxes disappeared and I carried Tass inside.
She had blood on her paws but not a single scratch. Ninja Cat.
Now Tass is on quarantine for rabies.
Rabies is some pretty serious business. Raccoons, skunks, bats and you guessed it...foxes are carriers and it’s universally fatal. Symptoms start with fever, headache and confusion. As the victim worsens, they experience hallucinations, paralysis, hypersalivation (over producing saliva) and hydrophobia (fear of water).
Tass has to get a series of shots and she’s on house arrest. She’s bitter about her incarceration and spends a lot of time meowing her frustration. It’s gonna be a long quarantine. Meanwhile, the city put out a cage to catch the culprits but we caught this guy instead.
Look at the teeth on that handsome guy!