Time for a cat story

We had a minor cat drama last night. At 11.30pm youngest daughter comes down to our room to tell us that the Little Cat, known as Nina to some, Ploddy to others, and Mongolita to one unkind brute, has jumped out through the roof window and is fighting with Otto the big unloved Turkish Van cat.

When we go back upstairs to look, there’s no sign of Little Cat or Otto but there’s a whole string of moggies at the edge of the roof staring down into the street. Daughter runs downstairs in a panic, but there’s nothing in the street except the usual. Meanwhile the sound of a cat fight starts up again but a couple of roofs away. All we can do is leave the window open and hope she finds her way back.

PENTAX Digital Camera

Little Cat is the sweetest little cat ever. But she has several issues. We found her abandoned in the street outside when she was about six months old, emaciated, full of worms and with a ruptured bowel. She couldn’t walk properly and kept falling over because the extreme intestinal problems and malnutrition had affected her brain.


In time, after two operations and intensive deworming, the intestinal stuff was sorted out, but she still has no sense of balance and falls over for no reason. She will always be nutty as a fruitcake, will never walk normally and will always thud about like a small elephant. Branwell, who is three times her size is wary of her. When she plays, she plays to win, and she beats him up mercilessly. The great wimp squeaks like a small rodent and hides under a bed when she gets it into her tiny little head to hurtle, around like a furry meteorite, knocking over everything in her path. The other day she sent a full laundry basket bowling down the stairs and into the door at the bottom.


Needless to say she isn’t allowed out. She’s fallen out of a second floor window twice with no ill effects, but if she wandered off and fell off a wall or a roof we might never get her back.


I had a bad night, woken several times by nothing, just listening for the sound of her clopping across the ceiling. She wasn’t back when husband got up at five. I had just dropped off into an anxious sleep when I was woken by an almighty crash on the veranda roof. I knew it was her. Before I had time to get out of bed she had barged her way through the shutters and flopped through our window ready for her breakfast. Her tail was all bushed up and she had a few stray tufts of loose hair. Other than that, nobody would have known she’d spent all night out on the tiles fighting, and had just dropped two floors from the roof. Talk about drunks.

Published by

Jane Dougherty

I used to do lots of things I didn't much enjoy. Now I am officially a writer. It's what I always wanted to be.

41 thoughts on “Time for a cat story”

    1. Little Cat is a survivor. Rescuing her is something I’ve never regretted even thoug it cost an arm and a leg in vet’s bills. I could have cost a lot more, but the vet kept her on observation for a week at no charge she was so astonished she was still alive!

  1. Oh wow! She is a character and a survivor, that one! And very beautiful… waaaaaah, I want a moggy! S’not fair!

    1. I don’t know about beautiful. Because her brain is slow, her gaze and everything is slow. And she can curl her ears over at the edges, and stick her little toe out separate from the rest of her foot. And her tail ends in what feels like wire that she can operate separately from the rest of her tail. She’s a real sweetie.

      1. Like I said, a real character. We had a cat like that when we were kids. he was an unusual silver grey, and we called him Smokey Joe. Everything he did was in slow motion, even when he jumped or ran about. There was definitely something ‘not right in the head’ about him, but he was lovely looking and lovely natured.

      2. It’s one of the endearing things about her, the slow, deliberate way she does everything. We only give her half a dozen biscuits at a time because it takes her so long to eat them she gets bored after a few. She walks up to her bowl, stares at the biscuits, picks one out, takes it into a corner, chews it for five minutes, plods back to her biscuits, picks out another one, plods off to a corner…Branwell has finished his before she’s eaten three biscuits and starts on her bowl.

  2. She’s a cutie, and a character for sure! I’m glad she got home safely. Our cats are strictly house cats. When the cat who is my special cat accidentally got out one night, we didn’t get him back for a couple of days. I was so upset. I think he had been hiding and terrified. We finally camped out in the dark backyard and lured him with food and scents from the house.

    1. We’ve had difficulty keeping male cats close to the house and have lost several. Little Cat is intrigued by the great outdoors but when she’s in the garden all she does if find a corner full of spierwebs and sits there chewing. She loves spiderweb! Branwell and Trixie both have to be thrown out of the house to get a bit of exercise but neither of them venture further than the end of the garden.

  3. Hmm, what a cat! Has she been desexed Jane? She sounds like one crazy, adorable cat. *sings* ‘Cats on the rooftop, cats on the tiles….’

      1. It’s a pity more people didn’t do it Jane, it would save having feral cats everywhere. Poor thing.

      2. When we first moved here there were no feral cats. Then one female appeared that the crazy cat lady started feeding. That cat was adopted by a family who have since moved away, but one of her daughters has since had five or six litters. As you can imagine, they are all completely wild and there are now dozens of them. The crazy cat lady used to talk about getting the original female neutered but there are loads of them now, all living on the roofs round about and extremely difficult to catch.

      3. Getting the original cat neutered? A bit bloody late now isn’t it? A pregnant cat is the gift that keeps on giving. Crazy cats, crazy cat ladies, oh boy what a team.

    1. I think she has so little grey matter that she wouldn’t notice if her head had fallen off! Bit yes, we’re all relieved we didn’t have to scrape her off the pavement 🙂

  4. Sounds like she has cerebellar hypoplasia. Saw a lot of kittens and cats with it at the shelter. Makes you love them more 🙂 Glad she found her way back home. Now you can get some sleep, too!

    1. You’re probably right. She is extremely loveable and although she’s a tough little cookie, she could so easily get herself into difficulties. I’d rather not take the risk.

      1. Wish they’d think the same sometimes! I had a little dainty looking cat that I eventually termed my dragon cat. Sweetest, neediest girl, but if something upset me, she would appear out of nowhere to give them a piece of her mind! Break through screens to chase off stray cats that came too close to the window, and would be gone for days. I miss her 🙂 Give your goofy one a hug for me.

      2. Cats that are ‘normal’ tend to be indifferent to what’s going on in the human world. The cats that actually need us or know we have helped them behave in a different way. When we took Little Cat to the vet, having decided that if we didn’t help her she’d die, she snuggled up to me when the vet tried to examin her. A ‘normal’ cat like Trixie would have skedaddled under the table to get out of the way, but Little Cat trusted me not to hurt her. It made me want to cry.

      3. People don’t give cats the credit they deserve, even in the veterinary industry. Most people would rather take on a growling rottweiler than an angry 5 pound cat. I took the cat shelter job out of desperation, but it quickly turned into my favorite of all positions, and remains so now. Those cats taught me so much, and I looked forward to going to work every morning.

      4. It has never been worthwhile (in a financial sense) to research animal intelligence and sensitivity. Even so, and even with the little that has been done, we have learnt so much about what goes on inside their heads. We ought to be ashamed of the way we humans behave in comparison. I hope your job gives you a lot of satisfaction. It would be my youngest’s dream job.

      5. Oh, but they are doing more research! My mom and I were watching a show about crows that showing communal memory and how amazingly intelligent they are among other things. We were so surprised, and since then love them. I also heard on the radio about a study on rats that tested both brains and empathy. They locked one rat in a cage, and left the other free with access to a pile of chocolate chips. They could either eat all the chips by themselves, or free the other rat. They vast majority freed the other rat first, and then ate together. Yes, humans really ought to be ashamed!

      6. They are, and I wonder who is funding the research? Benefactors who realise if private money doesn’t fund it it will never get done? Certainly the findings about animal sensitivity have made me stop killing anything except flies and parasites. I collect all the snails in the garden now and throw them on the shed roof where there is a mass of passion flower I’m hoping they’ll eat instead of the garden flowers!

      7. I think if a study does not get federal or government funding, then it is funded by private groups. Depends on the study. I went to a talk a couple months ago about dolphin research off the Florida coast. They’ve been studying them for so long, that the US government will call them when something toxic spills into other coasts. Also, another country called when they thought plans for a resort could have a negative impact on their own species of dolphins. I would love to work with them! It was fascinating. Research into animal sensitivity and social structure makes us better people. I think they shame us most of the time. But yes, my boys and I can’t kill bugs either! Mosquitoes and flies, however, are fair game.

      8. I agree about the flying pests! I’m wondering if the research on dolphins might get a helping hand because they are thought to be useful animals. Aren’t they trained to carry explosives to stick on enemy ships or something like that? Or am I being cynical?

      9. I do think (as far as conspiracy rumors go) that there are military experiments that do not put dolphins’ health and wellbeing as a priority. There’s also speculation that beached marine mammals occur because of sonic blasts military units do in the ocean.

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