Last night we lost the cat.
Usually he hides (wisely) until you kids go to bed. When we close your bedroom door he will be sitting at the top of the steps. “It’s my time now.”
He’ll meow his little heart out, leading us down to his food bowl like he’s sure we won’t remember to feed him this time. “Stupid humans.” I would like to point out that he has an automatic feeder. I literally just give it a shake so the food bowl appears magically full again.
Around 10:00 pm every night you can find him curled up and taking a post dinner nap atop his chosen family member; frequently me, but just as frequently the dog, and even sometimes your Dad.
It was almost exactly 10:00 pm last night when your Dad said out of the blue, “Where’s the cat?”
We checked all of his usual spots, shook his bag of food, and when he still didn’t appear, I began to actually worry.
Had he gotten in to something poisonous? A mousetrap? Cleaning supplies? Had he snuck outside somehow when we let the dog out? Since his rescue 5 months ago he hasn’t been outside. Every opportunity we’ve offered him to explore out there was greeted with a distinct cat-like “Hell no.”
We tore the house apart (Quietly. Children were sleeping). We checked every closet, under every couch and bed, and the attic. I stood outside shaking a bag of cat treats while your father scoured the neighborhood. He found a fox, two rabbits, and a deer. But, no cat.
At around 11:30 pm we gave up our search and reassured ourselves that he would come home when he was ready. I went to bed and tried not to think about our resident fox and what his appetite might be like.
I woke up in the morning, exhausted and still very upset. I started thinking about which photo I should use for the ‘Lost Cat’ poster. Your father rolled over and yawned, “I found the cat.”
I say Billy upright in bed. “What?? When? Where?”
“Last night. 1:30. In the attic.”
“But I checked the attic!”
“He probably wasn’t there when you looked. That attic connects to all the crawl spaces running the whole length of the house.” And, thanks to the effectiveness of home insulation, we couldn’t hear him.
Apparently your Dad woke up at 1:30 am to scratching at the attic door. He opened it up and there was the cat. Hallelujah! The cat walked right past him and over to the dog, whom he snuggled up to and then set to purring like crazy. Like the dog did anything!
Hey Cat, you know what that dog did while you were missing? He chased an imaginary squirrel, licked himself, and then went to sleep. But he gets all the love??
I’d pretend to be more offended, but I’m honestly just so glad he’s back.
See you at 10:00 tonight, buddy?