a cautionary tail



Posting days: Sunday and Wednesday and, sometimes, maybe, extra ‘news flashes’


Wednesday August 9th 2017


Well, Isis and Daisy have now shared the house for five nights and four days and they’re both still here. Even more impressive, they both have their hair /fur, limbs, tails and ears intact.

This is how their intercourse goes:

Kerplop! Kerplop! Kerplop! Daisy’s little feet are heard on the stairs. Simultaneously, Isis begins to twirl urgently on her hind legs. Round and round she goes, her beautiful pink and black spotty nose sniffing high in the air.

As Isis gets close, Daisy flows rapidly back upstairs.

Today she came down when R. visited. I think that the poor little cat thought it might be her person.

I have refused to let Daisy out, of course, and now the poor little thing has stopped rushing to the back door. While this makes life easier for me, it’s sad, too.

Because her older cat, Polly, hated poor Daisy, a frisky adolescent at the time, when friend Polymath moved to Wales and I took over her old house, Daisy was left with me in Birmingham.

Then, one day, N., who has a shop over the road, told me that Daisy crossed our extremely busy road at least once a day on her way to the cemetery. (No, she wasn’t checking out her family plot, she was after the mice and voles.)

Needless to say, she was whisked off to Wales pretty smartly.

When she has been here another couple of weeks, and I have blocked off the entry, I may allow her out under supervision. But certainly not yet.

Because bad things happen to nice cats. As the following story proves.

Yes, yes, Isis – and Rufus, Nancy, Dougie, Fergie and Lily – I know that this is a dog blog, not a cat blog, but the story needs to be told.

Recently, overhearing someone ask a lady I know whether her cat had been found, I asked her what had happened to the cat.

Her answer was quite chilling.

Six weeks before the lady and her husband were due to go on a fortnight’s holiday, one of their three cats disappeared.

They were, of course, dismayed. Several times a day, week after week, the cat was called from the back door, the front door, and the bedroom windows.

The three cats had been booked into the local Cats’ Protection League cattery for the duration of the holiday. Even though they despaired of ever seeing their little cat again, her people tried to be optimistic and couldn’t bring themselves to alter the cattery booking from three to two felines.

Five weeks and two days after the cat disappeared, the lady’s husband went into a bedroom used mainly for storage, in order to retrieve their passports from a chest of drawers.

As he pulled out the top drawer, he was startled by a faint movement in the drawer beneath.

His stomach lurched when he saw his little lost cat curled in the drawer, thin, limp, and barely able to move.

He immediately called his wife who came home from work and, while he phoned the vet, she grabbed a cup of water and a syringe, cradled the cat on her lap and dripped small droplets of water into her mouth. She wept when the poor little animal desperately tried to lift up her head enough to put her tongue into the cup.

When they took the cat to the vet, the lady was so upset that she keeled over and had to be helped to a chair.

The vet injected water into the space between the car’s two skins in order to re-hydrate her. This procedure was repeated the next day and the next, kitty was fed tiny amounts of food at very frequent intervals, and, amazingly, did so well over the following five days, that she was able to go into the cattery with the others, and their owners were able to go on holiday.

For a while, they couldn’t think how the little cat had managed to get into the drawer. Then, the lady’s husband remembered that six weeks before the holiday date, he had taken out the top drawer to check that their passports etc. were present and correct. Little cat must have crawled, unnoticed, into the drawer below and remained there when the one above was replaced.

They had searched every room in the house, peered repeatedly under and behind every piece of furniture which could be a possible hiding place, and stood in every room calling her.

They had called her many, many times through the window of the room in which she was eventually found, but she didn’t make a sound. No scratching, no mewing. Nothing.

The vet thinks that once she realised that she was trapped, she became virtually paralysed with fright, and entered a state similar to hibernation.

She was very close to death when found.

If she had not been found, she would, of course, have been dead before they returned. They still shudder to think  that while they were searching the house, even standing close to her prison, calling her, she was fading away in the drawer, too frightened to make a sound.

She lost about half her body weight, but, amazingly, she survived.


Isis came from the Aeza cat and dog rescue and adoption centre in Aljezur, Portugal. For information about adopting an animal from the centre, contact kerry@aeza.org or  www.dogwatchuk.co.uk

This entry was posted in Isis and Daisy, Isis at home and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to a cautionary tail

  1. Jane McKears says:

    I feel really shocked reading this. How easily this could happen, and how awful the outcome could have been. So very glad she is OK xxx


    • Yes, I was shocked too. You wouldn’t think to look in a drawer, would you, especially when you’d been standing close to it calling kitty’s name. I will look into every impossible space in the future, if I lose an animal. I don’t think that her poor owners will ever forgive themselves for not finding her sooner.


  2. Amber Lipari says:

    Wow, what a story! Is it your friend the Polymath who had the stroke?? I’m so sorry, hope she is recovering…


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