Saturday afternoon I took Frankie for his weekend walk. We walked across the street and up three houses. Frankie did his usual plant sniffing while I waited in the hot sun. Even though it was close to evening, it was still fairly hot.
When he was done smelling everything he led me behind the house where the edge of the community meets the fence that separates us from the power lines. We stood under a tree while Frankie did more investigating with his nose.
Suddenly I heard a crackling noise that was followed by a bright flash and almost instantaneously came the very loud bang of thunder. For about two seconds both Frankie and I were frozen in shock, especially since I didn’t even notice a dark cloud until after it happened. I didn’t see exactly where the lightning struck but it was very close and I became aware right away that we were standing under a tree. My first thought was to scoop Frankie up and get out of there but before I could move, Frankie ran and jerked the leash out of my hand.
He ran straight home and hid under my car while panting heavily. I tried to talk him out but he wasn’t budging. Finally, I decided to take his picture and pulled out my phone. That is when he exited on the other side of the vehicle.
I didn’t get the picture but this is a picture from the past that shows what he looked like under my car.
Once he got out from under my car he went for the back door and waited for me to open it. That was something he rarely does.
Once inside, Chris was relentless with his begging to go out. He knows he goes out after Frankie and he would not let me forget it. After a short time, I decided it was safe and let Chris out.
He was so happy to be out, no matter what the danger.
Chris was being very annoying this morning, crying at the door to go outside. Rose asked me to let him out for a few minutes so she could have some peace while she got ready for work. I complied, since I had things to do outside anyway and then brought him back in after a few minutes of him eating grass.
While he was out, Frankie was very upset that Chris was out and he wasn’t, so when I got back inside Rose said I should put Frankie’s harness on and take him for a walk. I didn’t really feel like doing that but I got his harness and my camera (just in case there was something worth sharing) and opened the door to let him out.
Frankie was a little nervous at first, for some unknown reason, but he soon was on his way. Within two minutes of being outside, Frankie managed to slip out of his harness. Fortunately I caught him in time. I brought him back inside, Rose put his harness back on and then I tried again. Chris slipped out the door at the same time and Rose said not to worry, she could see him from the door. It soon became clear that, despite Rose’s assurances, she was not watching Chris. I tried to keep Frankie close so I could also watch Chris but it wasn’t easy. Eventually I had to bring Frankie in, a little earlier than Frankie wanted, so I could go get Chris.
That was more difficult than expected because Chris pulled Frankie’s old trick that Frankie learned from Chris. He hid under Rose’s car. My efforts to get him out resulted in only growling, hissing and biting. It didn’t help that the lady across the street chose that time to take her two dogs for a walk.
Rose needed to leave for work so my only recourse was to turn the hose on and squirt him out. That worked, but then he got under my truck. Eventually, I was able to get him close enough to the edge to pull him out. He was not happy about that.
It seems our cat’s weekly romp in the back yard has come to an end, thanks to Frankie. The last couple of times we let them out, Frankie led me on a wild goose chase, hiding under cars along the way so I couldn’t catch him. Last week was the final straw and Rose decided she did not want to let them out again. Of course, not letting them out and not letting them get out are two different things.
Three times in the past week Frankie got out the front door when we were trying to leave or come in the house. Two of those times Chris ran out the door at the same time. They double team us. When we try to block one, the other cat sneaks around us and out the door and then when we shift our focus to that cat, we end up losing both of them.
It seems weird that I am saying this but Chris is good. He always stays close to the house, at least for a little while. Frankie runs like the wind. The first couple of times he got out I was able to grab him right away because he was distracted by a lizard. The last time was on the weekend when Rose and I were leaving to catch a movie. Frankie led us both on a long chase.
On my last post on this subject, Nellie suggested a Super Soaker might get him out from under the cars. With that in mind I grabbed the squirt bottle that we sometimes use to help us get into the house and to also stop Frankie from picking at the screen by the front door. I used it on him several times to try to dislodge him from the cars he was hiding under. Sometimes it would work but he would just run to the next available car. Other times I kept squirting him but he seemed not to notice.
I was starting to get worried because, despite our attempts to “herd” him the other way, he kept getting closer to the busy road we live near. Finally I was able to get him out in the open where Rose grabbed him and brought him home.
What concerns me now is we are planning to move to a new place. One without the big back yard and one that may be less tolerant of cats running around outside. I want to keep them inside but I also want to bring them out so that if they do escape they will know where home is.