Posted in cats, dogs, pets

Holiday accidents and other faux pa[w]s

The number one reason a woman gave me for wanting to adopt our all-black cat? A Halloween party. Her child was going as a dreary old witch and wanted a prop to liven things up. Now, that’s a recipe for disaster: take a part-feral cat to a boisterous party with kids in weird outfits and see how fast he can scramble out of someone’s arms and up a tree. Or worse, out into the road, in the dark.
I, too, have sprained my brain trying to help my son dream up a novel Halloween costume. But I have never resorted to involving living critters.
Some other things NOT to do to your pet:
1) Do not take a pet to a parade. Once the brass section of the marching band is within eyesight, the sound of the bass drum along with the clashing cymbals will have already dispatched your pet to underneath the closest car. Or it will have wrapped its leash around your ankles so that you will be on your knees for the remainder of the procession.
2) Do not take your pet hunting with you. If not trained for hunting, your pet is liable to wind up as accidental prey itself. One couple’s dog was out of sight faster than you can say “hocus pocus,” taking off after a rabbit in the woods. After hours of calling for her, they gave up their search as nighttime arrived. For several days they returned to search but, alas, their dog was lost in Wonderland.
3) Do not take your pet to a fireworks display. As soon as the first missiles pop up in the sky, the mild-mannered family hound will be startled out of its wits, break out of its collar and flee the scene in a panic. While others are ooh-ing and aah-ing at the pretty lights, you will be in the marshes with the leeches trying to coax a trembling animal out of the cattails.
4) Do not let the cat play with the pet rodent. Our gerbil lived in a glass aquarium with a hardware cloth-screened lid. At the time, our only cat, Marbles, decided to lie atop the lid and do some gerbil gazing. The gerbil, with a remarkable sense of humor for a rodent, standing on tiptoe, poked its nose up into Marbles’ fur. As if jolted by lightning, Marbles sprung up in the air and scrambled out of the room leaving bits of fur in her wake. But for the lid, this might have been a sadder tale indeed.
So, please, proceed with caution before introducing your pet to the whole wide world. You never know what an animal may do.

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Owned by three cats over age 13