Friday, July 09, 2021

Pets: Can't live with them, can't live without them

Because it's summer in Missouri, I take my walk as soon as it's light enough to see.  The temperatures rise too high for comfort after the early morning hours.  Yesterday morning when Gabe and I started out, I looked back behind us and saw the cat, Blue, running to catch up with us.

Before Mama Kitty got old, she walked with me and Cliff every single day on our whole walk.  As she aged, she began dropping part of the walk and finally just quit.  She does still accompany me to the mailbox sometimes, but that's about the extent of it.  The first time Blue-cat followed us to the pasture, I thought maybe he'd take the whole walk like his predecessor did, but that was not to be:  Every time we get to the wooded part of our walk, he disappears into the thicket.  The first time he did this, it wasn't five minutes before he was yowling pitifully as though he was lost; as I walked, I started calling him.  He finally showed up, then got lost again.  Once Gabe and I set our faces toward home, I began calling the cat again.  He showed up again and went back with us.

Since that time, I try to sneak off without him, because he will do the same thing every. single. time.  Somehow, he knew we were walking yesterday and followed.  Now, I have always said he's a smart cat, but apparently he isn't smart enough to walk perhaps 1/4 of a mile from the woods back to the house on his own.  Yesterday, when he disappeared in the vicinity of the tiny pond (more of a mosquito-breeding puddle, really) I decided to leave him to his own devices.  When Gabe and I got back to the house, I woke Cliff up and told him we probably wouldn't see Blue until evening feeding time.

Well, evening feeding time came and went (4:30 PM).  So at 5:30, Gabe and I set out on a mission to find the cat.  Honestly, I was a little worried, although he's been gone that long before.  Pets are like children:  You know they'll probably be OK, but you worry about them anyhow.  When we got to the area by the pond where we'd last seen him, I began calling, then started walking where I would have gone next if I were going on our complete walk.  It wasn't three minutes until I looked behind me and saw Blue, coming at a run.  I turned toward home, calling him repeatedly so he'd follow.  Temperatures were in the upper 80's, and Blue slowed to a walk and started panting.  I stopped and picked him up, and he let me carry him for quite a while, purring and rubbing his head on my chin.  Eventually he wriggled, wanting down, and he walked the rest of the way with us, still with his mouth open, panting.

This morning I was very careful to watch behind me and Gabe, but Blue wasn't there.  If he had been, I'd have probably just skipped walking today.  

Here's a one-minute video I took to let you hear the sights and sounds that surround me when I take my early-morning walk with Gabe.


  1. *haha* Now Donna, you watch out for that Blue boy!! Do whatever it takes to keep him safe & sound. He'd do the same for you. :-D :-D What a wonderful video too. God's country! Thanks so much for posting it.... peace itself. ~Andrea xoxoxo

  2. Cats are wonderfully weird. The sky is beautiful, but mosquitoes? Ugh. Send any rain our way; we really need it.

  3. Think Blue has figured out how to make you carry him part way. Odd him getting "lost" though.
    When you can hear mosquitoes, it is time to get inside.

    1. I don't think he was lost. He has been back there before and came home. I think he just gets to playing and finding things to chase. He does usually come back by nightfall, but I was afraid he'd get eaten by a coyote or fox.

  4. That cat is smarter then you think! He just likes the attention you give him. :)

  5. Sometimes maybe a fox or coyote gets between your house and where Blue is exploring, so when he catches the scent of coyote or fox he hides out where he is until you guys come back to save him.

    I live in Missouri in an old small suburb of St. Louis. My husband isn't and never was a fan of the outdoors, but I always was and am, except a knee problem keeps me away from woods and fishing now. I love the sound of whip-or-wills at dusk. Do you hear whip-or-wills calling on your property in the area of Missouri where you live?

    We are forecast to have another hot spell starting this weekend and going on for I don't know how long. I never had one single problem with Missouri's hot summers until I got into my 60's, when I got sun/heat sick out in my flower beds and almost fainted, ever since then, I wear a wide brimmed straw sun hat on my head and a cool towel around my neck, but can still stand the high heat for only a short time.

    Our Fuzzy Pomeranian is 17 years old and is in his last weeks or months of life because his liver is failing, he has a heart murmur, and they suspect he has cancer. Some days he feels real good and other days he doesn't. After Fuzzy crosses that Rainbow bridge, I can't imagine living the rest of our lives without a dog. I pray that we find the right puppy or dog for us again, it has always seemed we ended up finding just the dog we were supposed to have, but I worry about that dog out living us and being an old dog when my husband and I pass away. What morbid things we have to put our thoughts into now days.

    Stay cool and watch out for those ornery mosquitoes. Years ago when I was a girl, our beautiful Collie got heartworms. We think my Grandpa's bird dogs (that he brought up here from Florida each year to go hunting) had them and he brought them up here where we live, were bitten by mosquitoes that then bit our Collie, and that is how our Collie got them. Our Collie almost died from the heartworm treatment, but he did survive. Our Collie was the first dog that we had ever heard of here in the St. Louis area getting heartworms. That was back in the mid 1960's. He was an outside dog and was exposed to mosquitoes all of the time.

    1. Blue-the-cat now comes home on his own, but he still follows me and Gabe only as far as the pond. One of my husband's sisters lives in Creve Coeur; it's a wonderfully quiet neighborhood where we often find deer in the streets! When I used to spend a week in summer at my grandma's house, I would go to sleep listening to whippoorwills, but I haven't heard any for years. I miss them. Gabe is always on heartworm meds, and always has something to prevent mosquitoes, fleas, and ticks. Add the cost of all that to his being groomed every 2 months, and you realize what an expense he is. Thanks for the long and quite interesting comment!


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