After this saga, you would have thought we learn our lesson. But no, we didn’t, we were still convinced that we were smarter than cats and we could get them under control.
Of course, Monkey knows better and was determined to show us how wrong we were (again).
After the ‘Monkey gone missing’ incident, I had a long discussion with Monkey’s mum and asked how we should proceed going forward. We decided we will continue to let cats out, it’s a beautiful summer after all, but I will make sure to be in the garden with them at all time. The idea is, I shall be able to stop her immediately if she attempts to jump over the wall again.
Or that’s what we thought we could do.
Problem is she didn’t use the same tactic this time. She didn’t need to jump over the wall…
Monkey probably thought, ‘huh? Sure! I haven’t even lifted my paw yet to show you human. Oh well, I suppose I have to put things right this time once and for all.’
Did our plan work out? No. Not even on the first day.
But you might ask ‘what can go wrong?!’
A gap in the garden…
A gap so narrow we never pay any attention to.
Oh but Monkey knows…
On the first day since the ‘new plan’ is put in place, I arrived to the house as always. It was a lovely morning.
I let the cat out like I did before. The cats did their usual thing, dashed out like lighting only to stop after 3 seconds because they got distracted and forgot they were supposed to dash out.
We walked around the yard. Jake smelt the grass, went to the corner to go to the loo. Freddie disappeared into the neighbour’s garden immediately. Monkey walked normally around the garden.
But she looks too “normal”…
On hindsight, she was almost pacing herself to make sure I won’t suspect anything. Almost going ‘la la la la, I am acting as causal as possible…la la la la…’
After half an hour, I told the cats it’s time to go back inside. Jake went straight back not a problem, but Monkey stood there hesitated. So I stepped in her direction, but I was too late!
She dashed into this little gap and disappeared into darkness.
I have never noticed this gap before so I wasn’t sure where this gap lead to. As it turns out, it doesn’t lead to anywhere, but it doesn’t matter, Monkey has her own plan in mind.
She knew I usually only stay in the house for one hour, she KNEW if she wait it out, I would leave the house eventually, then she could have her freedom to roam the garden, then jumped outside the garden like she did a few days ago.
She had smelt the taste of freedom; there is no going back.
She would get to do whatever she wants to do during the day. Nothing, NOTHING is holding her back!
I tried to coax her out with food, but soon I realised I got myself into a war of attrition. It’s meaningless. I have to let go.
I called Monkey’s mum, and she agreed that there is nothing we could do.
If you are wondering if a cat can plan the whole plot all along, I’d like to believe she could. She probably figured out the gap is too narrow for human to access.
And another thing she knows if we were going to get into a war of attrition to ‘wait it out’, she would win, because after a few minutes of me trying to coax her out, she decided to close her eyes to take a nap to pass her time.
Since that fateful day, Monkey has been given (not really given but we have no choice…) freedom to roam during the day. She always comes back just before sunset. And she always demands to be served her dinner immediately…in her majestic style as always.
Moral of the lesson? One needs to be humble when one is to work with animals. The longer I work with cats, the more I realise I don’t know anything about cats. Monkey is one of the most memorable cats I have ever worked with because she always put me back in my place whenever I get cheeky.
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