Saturday, 26 November 2011

A Cat Conundrum!

I don't know whether you remember but I have mentioned 'Hunter' our neighbours black cat in previous posts. Hunter and I have had a very checkered past. The fist day we moved into our house, we turned up to find him sitting on our doorstep. Being the animal lover that I am I immediately crouched down and started stroking him which he seemed to be very happy about. After a little while (and after getting a 'stop playing with the cat and help to bring stuff in' look from Tom) I stood up and that's when it happened. Hunter struck. Now, I have been around cats and various other animals all my life and I know the difference between a cat playfully attacking and a real full on viscous attack...this was the latter. I'm talking all claws and teeth sinking into my leg! I screamed, Tom tried not to laugh and Hunter skulked off. It happened so so quickly, you know like when you watch those TV shows 'When animals attack?' well it was just like that (OK, maybe I am being a bit dramatic but as you can imagine, I was pretty traumatised)  Luckily I had a pair of jeans on but Hunter had still managed to pierce my skin with his teeth and leave big scratch marks with his claws so much so that I had to go and get a Tetanus Booster. Nice.

So, after that I tried to avoid Hunter. I've never been scared of any animal but I was definitely wary. Hunter was always hanging around and I'd walk as far away past him him as possible.   After a while I thought that it was ridiculous that I was scared of a cat and decided I should face my fear (get back on the horse and all that) so I made amends with Hunter. Forward a few months later Hunter was now coming into our house, (we did try to stop him, but have you ever tried to stop a cat from running in when you open the door? Its almost impossible) Hunter seemed to love being with us, even though he has a perfectly nice home to us just next door and is very well cared for.  He started jumping up on our laps and I have to admit I did start to give him little scraps of food.. oh alright, I'll admit it I bought a little cat dish and some 'Friskies' especially for when he came to visit.
We've been in our house for 8 months now and all has been fine with Hunter up until a week ago.  I was sitting on our deck having a nice cup of tea and reading a magazine when as usual he came walking along our balcony to say hello. After greeting him I went back to my magazine and that's when it happened again, only this time I didn't even see it coming. I was nowhere near him and the worst part is I was wearing shorts!  Thank god he didn't bite me this time, just sunk all of his claws into me. I was so shocked, this attack literally came out of nowhere... once again I screamed (this time more out of shock) and once again Hunter skulked off.
The puncture wounds were quite deep, and blood was pouring down my leg (honestly, I'm not exaggerating, I even took photos to show Tom when he came home which I did consider adding to this post but nobody wants to see that first thing on a Sunday morning do they?)
So, I decided that Hunter would now be banned from our house. I was so upset that he did it again especially after we had come so far since the last time it happened and although i am writing this with a light heart I am genuinely worried (and a little scared) that he will do it again.  It's been very hard trying to ignore Hunter, he has been sitting outside our back door and turns up every time I pull into our driveway. Last night I found him sitting on the bonnet of my car waiting for me... I did weaken and gave him a little pat but told him quite firmly that he can't come in anymore as he was naughty and thanks to him I am walking around with scabs and bruises on my leg - not an attractive look.
This morning I went outside and found a HUGE dead rat on our doorstep.  Obviously a gift or an apology from Hunter? He has never left us a present before and although finding a dead rat on our doorstep wasn't particularly nice I thought that there was something quite touching about this gesture. So now I am not really sure what to do? Should I continue to ignore Hunter or should I once again forgive him and just hope that he doesn't strike me again?  Now can you see why I am having a bit of a cat conundrum?

Advice please?

Happy Sunday everyone xxx

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