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Author Topic: Mouse Tales  (Read 9520 times)
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catbird
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« on: October 02, 2010, 01:08:48 PM »

In all the discussions we have had on this forum about cats, I don't recall a recent thread about catching mice!  So I thought it might be interesting to start one.  After all, this is how the relationship between cats and humans developed.  Before cats were kept as pets, people had them for working purposes:  Eliminating rodents.

Do your cats catch mice, voles, other critters?  What do they do with them?  How do you react?

The weather is starting to turn cold in my area, and this is the time of year when mice begin trying to sneak into the house.  They can get in through the smallest little crevice that you don't even notice, and even run in the door while you are going through it.  My cats are all indoor, but from time to time, they catch mice in the house, especially in the fall.  You would think the mice must be suicidal to go into a house where there are five cats, but I guess mice are not very smart.

Tiny, 13-year-old Kalahari is my champion mouser.  She's caught three in the past two weeks.  Last night she trotted into the living room head held high, carrying one in her mouth, and trailed by all the other cats, who were very interested in what she had!  (Much shrieking here from other family members.)  Linley (big boycat who weighs more than twice what she does) kept trying to take it away from her.  She was growling at him like a miniature lion.  You'd never think such a growl would come out of that little bitty cat.  Finally, I managed to shoo the others back away, and she set the mouse down in front of my feet.

I picked up the (dead  Tongue) mouse with a paper towel, praised Kalahari for giving me such a mice, er, nice, present, and quietly disposed of it outside under a bush.

I sort of feel sorry for the mice, but I don't want them in my house!  I'm glad that when they do get in, Kalahari eliminates them.  If they are alive when she brings them to me, I let them go outside, which is probably a mistake.
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The problem with cats is that they get the exact same look on their face whether they see a moth or an axe-murderer--Paula Poundstone
catwoods
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« Reply #1 on: October 02, 2010, 01:21:33 PM »

 Grin Grin Grin Good telling of the mousey hunt! Mice come in here this time of year, too, and I have also wondered why they waltz right into a house of cats. Over the years, I've learned not to scream, unless they jump out at me really fast; and oh brother can those things ever move!

I'll try to post a mouse story later...
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lesliek
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« Reply #2 on: October 02, 2010, 06:44:17 PM »

They never make it into the house here ! Punkin & Oreo are both in & out cats & love to hunt voles. They almost always eat them. The dogs also dig them up when they here them tunneling & sometimes eat them. Little Remrat caught a mole almost as big as he is a few weeks ago. He shook it until he broke its neck & brought it to me as a gift. Tongue I always praise them & if they want to eat it I let them. Our worst experience was Trooper running & playing keep away with a live vole. He accidently swallowed it & it scratched his throat on the way down. He was on very soft pureed food for a few weeks !
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« Reply #3 on: October 02, 2010, 10:17:49 PM »

When I was 7 had a cat named Smokey who caught all the mice and rats as that is what he existed on. Thankfully he never brought his prey inside the house. Very smart as he knew sit and stay. Well fed lil cat he was.
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lesliek
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« Reply #4 on: October 03, 2010, 06:46:00 AM »

Forget to tell the newest Dave tale ! He is living in Paula's sunroom now & since she can close it to the rest of the house,they leave a door ajar for him. 2 weeks ago her Mom went in to feed him & found a "lovely " new gift. A headless rabbit ! Tongue BTW, the little green spot machine does get out blood.
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catbird
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« Reply #5 on: October 03, 2010, 11:40:56 AM »

OMG a rabbit is a lot worse than a mouse! Shocked
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noisymouse
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« Reply #6 on: October 03, 2010, 07:28:44 PM »

What a good idea for a thread!


My cats are also indoor cats who get a chance at mousing when the weather gets cooler.

My cat Howl LOVES mice. He just needs to smell a mouse or hear a tiny rustle somewhere and he'll park there for HOURS waiting for the mousey to come out and play. If he's caught a mouse earlier in the day, he becomes OBSESSED, and will spend the rest of the day stalking his favorite mouse spots in the hopes another will come out. He LOVES to play with mice.....

..... but only when they're dead. And the trouble is he's not too sure yet how to make it dead. He sits there with the poor mouse hanging halfway out of his mouth, and he holds it until it stops moving. Every once in a while he'll set the mouse down on the floor to check and see if it still wants to run away, and if it does he picks it back up and holds in his mouth for a bit more. (MOST of the time. Sometimes they get away from him. Lovely.) But once it's dead, OH! it's the best toy in the whole world, and he throws it into the air and bats it all around the floor and rolls on it. He doesn't seem to have any interest in eating them yet... but I usually take them away from him before long, because I get grossed out watching him roll a dead mouse all around my floor.  Tongue

I love that he's catching the mice in my house, and it makes him so happy when he gets his mice, but dammit I wish he'd perfect his kill. It's a kind of gruesome thing to watch the poor mouse die slowly like that.....



And my other cat Sophie cares only for food. She will investigate what Howl's doing and what he's playing with, just in case he's been given a treat and she didn't get one, but once she sees that it's just another dirty old mouse and not something that she likes to eat, she goes back to plotting how to make me feed her. Howl doesn't growl at her like I've seen other cats do, but he snorts in triumph. In fact sometimes that's the only way I know he found a mouse.... 2 am in the morning and suddenly Howl comes snorting into the bedroom... dammit Howl! Take your mouse out of the bedroom!
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merrihart
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« Reply #7 on: October 04, 2010, 03:02:21 AM »

rofl Good Boy, Howl!

Bucky was a champion mouser in his day, but mostly he brought home rabbits.  Baby rabbits.  I'd chase him for them because he wasn't bringing meowmi a present, he was planning on dining!

My angel torti Muffy would always leave me a pile of voles in the basement, though.  urgh!
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catbird
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« Reply #8 on: October 04, 2010, 05:27:41 AM »

LOL I can just see Howl, noisymouse!  And hear him too--one of my cats snorts also.  Such a funny sound!  I think when they hold onto the mouse like that, they are suffocating it, or trying to.  (I've seen shows on Animal Planet with cheetahs doing that to prey.)  Kalahari sometimes does the same, and we had an "escape" last week also.  But later in the evening, she caught the mouse again, and the second time, it did not get away.

If my cats eat the mice, they always vomit them back up. Tongue
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The problem with cats is that they get the exact same look on their face whether they see a moth or an axe-murderer--Paula Poundstone
merrihart
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« Reply #9 on: October 04, 2010, 07:15:26 AM »

Be happy.  Mine would eat the heads.  Just the heads.  If I found it shortly after... dear lord, what a mess!
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lesliek
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« Reply #10 on: October 04, 2010, 07:49:11 AM »

The brain has the most taurine, so eating the heads is a good thing ! Wink Kind of gross finding all the headless bodies though.
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Janet
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« Reply #11 on: October 04, 2010, 11:04:26 AM »

A couple months ago, Raleigh stalked a skink (small lizard) that got into our house for 4 days. Finally caught it.
Yes, we are just getting into "mouse in the house" season and I feel very sorry for any critter that enters our home with Raleigh now on the premises.   Shocked 
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JustMe
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« Reply #12 on: October 04, 2010, 11:31:56 AM »

We've never had mice make it into the house, but BJ caught and killed a mouse and a chipmunk when DH let him outside. I realize it is natural for cats. While in awe of his hunting skills considering he has a lopsided jaw, mouth that doesn't close all the way, and one fang, we were upset, and his outside jaunts were curtailed during baby bird season.  He did not eat the rodents, but brought them to the basement door where he usually enters and exits to show them off. I really like chipmunks.

Our first kitty, Twinkie, would also catch chipmunks and moles while on a harness.   Huh  It looked like she was smothering them or breaking their necks....never a cut on them.  Guess she was a natural, too.  Our second cat, Smokey #1, would just look at birds and chipmunks and squirrels and never try to catch them.
« Last Edit: October 04, 2010, 11:43:01 AM by JustMe » Logged

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lesliek
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« Reply #13 on: October 04, 2010, 11:39:54 AM »

Punkin always smothers them or breaks their necks too. He always comes to the door or the deck steps with it & cries to let me know he caught something. I used to try to take them away from him, so now as soon as we go out & admire it he runs under the 30' deck with it. When it gets replaced I expect to find a mini graveyard full of bones under it !
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merrihart
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« Reply #14 on: October 04, 2010, 12:30:39 PM »

I believe, from watching nature shows, that a cat's first pounce is an attempt to break the neck, and if that doesn't work, they try to smother it.  But it really depends on how mama cat taught them, because it's a learned behavior.

Cats who have a hard time killing a critter usually did not learn to hunt from mama, but learned from play with humans or on their own.

But don't quote me, since I'm not an expert.  Tongue
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