Dry Creek Hill

Feral Cat Fridays: The Saga of Skunkmouse and Mr. Spring

Skunkmouse is a very good friend of our inside cats. He lives in the magic wheelbarrow with his friend Mr. Spring and other folks our cats like, but Skunkmouse is the cats’ BFF.

After years of spending nights asleep in the wheelbarrow Skunkmouse began to wander through the house at night. I didn’t know about his nightly expeditions until Turk and Swiffer alerted me to the presence of possible pantry invaders.

I opened the door to find Skunkmouse hiding in the pantry in the company of Mr. Spring.

I’m always up for solving a mystery, so I set up a camera to track their nightly wanderings.

I was not surprised to see that Skunkmouse was the leader of the wayward duo. Here you see him waiting as Mr. Spring rappels down from the wheelbarrow. The two miscreants then hold a brief planning meeting before setting out on their expedition.

First they make a stop at the mysterious and wonderful box, presumably in an effort to understand why their feline friends are so enamored of time in the box.

They then move on for a short stop at Sofia’s ball-in-the-track toy, where they carefully stay in the center of the scratching pad rather than expose themselves to the dangers of Sofia’s speeding ball.

They were out of camera range after that, so I had to set up a second observation post in the kitchen the next night. Somewhere toward dawn Swiffer found Skunkmouse and Mr. Spring resting.

I can only assume that they then made a break for the pantry. That’s where I found them in the morning, and Swiffer was hot on my heels when I opened the pantry door.

Of course, Swiffer gets a morning treat from the pantry so he’s always ready for that door to open. If it’s a choice between Skunkmouse and a few Dairy Temptations, I have my money on the Temptations.

So, why is this a Feral Cat Fridays post? Our 3 indoor cats were on their way to feral status before appearing on our property. Sofia and Swiffer were dumped at the foot of our driveway as very young kittens and immediately wormed their way into our hearts. We knew we were done for less than an hour after rescuing them from the weeds. Turk’s story is similar, and has already been told.

2 thoughts on “Feral Cat Fridays: The Saga of Skunkmouse and Mr. Spring

  1. shoreacres

    I learned just this morning that the first Texas German settlers didn’t have a word for the skunks they encountered, so they came up with stinkkatze , or stinky cat. It would be interesting to see a confrontation between Skunkmouse and a stinkkatze.

    I finally had to stop giving my Dixie Rose those little fur mice. It was wholly predictable. Every time she received a new one, it was good for less than a few hours. She’d bite off the tail and eat it, and then carry the carcass to her water bowl and ‘drown’ it. To prevent an intestinal blockage, the furry mice had to go.

    1. Charles Prokop Post author

      Stinky cat is a great name for a skunk, in my opinion. Back when we were dealing with our cat colony at maximum size we had one skunk join the breakfast crowd. The skunk never caused any trouble although I gave it a wide berth.

      Our cats love to carry skunkmouse around and play soccer with him, but they’ve left him intact. Early on I was worried about them tearing off his tail or his eyes and eating it, but the worst they’ve done is bat him under furniture and doors. He’s been with us for a few years by now. I understand your concern about Dixie Rose. Our biggest concerns are rubber bands and twist ties. One inattentive second and the cats are trying to make off with them. I’d hate to deal with the trauma of a swallowed rubber band or plastic covered metal strip, not to mention how bad we’d feel about letting it happen!

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