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Friday, February 26, 2016

Feline Friday {Grounded}

Abby Gail got herself grounded recently. Literally. This was more for my own sanity's sake than her own.

While we were outside planting some new trees and daffodils last Sunday, she quickly and absentmindedly crossed through the fence and into the neighbor’s yard while hunting butterflies; but, I managed to grab her leash before she could get too far. She can be like a Cheetah and go from 0 to 60 mph in nanoseconds. I also discovered that I am either too old to run or badly out of shape.

Dan was inside for about five minutes while I gently struggled with a hissing, growling Abby Gail trying to get her to cross back over to our side. Dan joined me in the effort and ended up getting a scratch on his wrist. In the end, she managed to get out of her harness. I thought she was going to bolt and I would lose her.

In the meantime, Gracie, our tripod, saw the hullabaloo and ran to the fence to watch. She can run fast if she wants to. I ignored (forgot about) her because I trusted her to not cross the boundaries.

I ended up having to trespass our neighbor's yard to get to Abby Gail. While I was running/trotting to the neighbor's yard, she was running back and forth along the fence but not crossing back over (through). Dan remained on our side of the fence to keep an eye on her (and Gracie). He thinks Abby was more scared than anything because of her behavior. She was just freaked about being on the wrong side of the fence and could not figure out how to get back to our side even though there were tons of openings she could have slipped through easily.

When I arrived near her on the neighbor’s land, I squatted. She immediately approached me hissing and growling. This was not the defensive kind of communication with hair raised and ears flattened; but instead, it was her expression of displeasure, fear, unhappiness, etc., and etc. kind of communication.

She has been my weirdest unusual cat in terms of body and vocal language which is why I think she's extremely unadoptable. Most people, even cat fanatics, would be scared of her. It is just a matter of knowing and learning the cat’s language as no two cats are alike. Plus, I believe Abby Gail does have some “wild” cat in her genetics. In other words, I think she is a close descendant of a wild cat (e.g. Bengal) unlike those of domesticated cats which are many generations from a wild cat.

As soon as she sniffed my fingers and subtly relaxed, I got up and gently lifted her using both hands around the chest under her front legs. She was growling and hissing all the while; but, just hanging in there (relaxed).

Anyway, I took her over to the fence, said a quick prayer that she would go straight home and dropped her on our side of the fence. Upon landing on the ground, she immediately ran for the back door. When I arrived back in my own yard, I remembered Gracie and looked for her. She was already calmly and slowly working her way back to the immediate back yard area. I think she was highly entertained by our (and Abby’s) antics. She's a good cat that knows her boundaries.

Dan said Abby was hissing and growling with front paws on stoop. He said it was like she was cussing and swearing wanting the door opened NOW. She became grounded. She was not allowed back outside while we worked. I did not dare let her outside again until Wednesday and even then, I stayed with her as it is that time of the year when birds and butterflies are a huge attraction for her and she does not realize what she does (such as slipping through a fence) until after the fact. I just cannot stand the idea of losing her.