I’ve been noticing a few things about life lately. This might sound a bit elementary but here goes: cats actually eat the mice/birds/rabbits they catch! I know, I know, where have I been hiding? But the truth is that I’ve really only had city cats raised on Whiskas, Iams and roast chicken leftovers. My Vancouver cats, Morgan and Milo, tend to play with their prey till its dead and then lift their sweet faces and look at me imploringly to bring back their squeaky toy. They eventually lose interest and walk away leaving the corpse for me to deal with. My Oxfordshire country cat Theo brings his catch into the house, displays it proudly for a moment and then crunches his way through it – with gusto. Tail, claws, beak, feathers, fur, skull and all.
In all fairness Theo has had a hard life till he adopted us. He belonged to the owners of a pub, (probably explains his near fanatical addiction to chicken wings), who sold the pub and left him with a relative who already had four cats, two dogs, twenty chickens and various others…ducks, cows, sheep, etc. Theo tried to move across the acreage to a house with one other cat; where the people called him Cedric. He didn’t settle there. (Personally I don’t blame him, I wouldn’t want to be called Cedric either.) Then he found us and the Zen – coal fire, feather duvet – tranquility that is West Cottage.
He’s really the most beautiful cat with golden eyes, sleek white and tortoise fur, a gentle, loving disposition towards us and a murderous outlook towards all small squeaky creatures. I bought him the expensive Whiskas, (with real chunks of salmon), which he wolfed down in five seconds, then caught a mouse for breakfast and a sparrow for 11s’es. We made him eat his catch outside. He left the feet and some wing feathers. At least we now have an explanation for the partially dismembered rabbit under the privet hedge and the rat carcass we accidently ran over. I’m afraid our courtyard is beginning to look like Smaug’s cavern. I’ve taken to calling him “T” for Terminator.