Sassy cats – Squatters

All four cats watching intently. From left Sasha, Morgan, Gus and Gracie

We had our first visitor at our critter AirBnB last weekend. Despite four cats, we are listed in the mousie travel guide. We are one of the ten best homes for mouse entry. They did a big spread on us. Easy access, lots of food. Just avoid the cats.

The adventure started when I couldn’t find Sasha and Gus. Not unusual. We have sliding glass doors in our basement with a cat tree and the old kitchen chairs. They enjoy watching the critters outside.

I walked downstairs and noticed that both were huddled around the treadmill. Like really close. Oh-oh

I didn’t have time to investigate but a quick look didn’t yield anything. That evening none of the cats came out for supper. I went downstairs. Now all four cats were huddled around the treadmill. Even little Gracie, who didn’t want to miss anything.

I had something to do so I knew the little guy was on his own until the next day. There wasn’t much chance of coming out with the four bullies surrounding him, so I tossed a few sunflower seeds underneath. That would hold him over until I could rescue him (and yes he ate them all!).

I checked late in the day and only saw three cats. Sasha was missing. I called her and she answered. She always does her little “purrump.”  I heard it but didn’t see her. Called her again. Another “purrump.” This time I saw the swish of her fluffy tail. She had squooshed her chubby self under the end of the treadmill to look at the mouse eye-to-eye but there wasn’t enough room to catch it.

The next morning, I went down in earnest with my deli cup and cardboard. All the cats were there. The little mouse had come out and Morgan cornered it for me. I swooped in with my deli cup and escorted the little guy outside into a safe twig pile. With neighborhood cats and hawks, I’m not sure it’s safer than my basement but it’s where he belongs.

It’s a rite of passage. We’ve had our first mouse in the new house and no one died on my watch.

53 thoughts on “Sassy cats – Squatters

  1. Pingback: It’s that time of year | Views and Mews by Coffee Kat

  2. You’re braver than me – I would have screamed bloody murder and you did the honorable and kind thing and released it outside. I go thru more hullabaloo to corner a spider or centipede, including heart palpitations. 🙂 I like your description of how your house lures mousies.

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          • My friend lived in Richmond, Virginia, in the city, not out in the sticks. She sent me pics of a long black snake that liked to sun itself on a sunny ledge in her front yard. She just let it stay there (I’d never go out the door until I knew it was gone). There was a robin’s nest in her backyard and the babies were days from fledging (we had documented their growth from eggs to 12 days in pics on my blog) and the snake slithered up and got them. He had one in his mouth when she let her dogs out. She went and got a rake and grabbed it with the rake, dropped it in a large flower pot and covered it something … a garbage can lid I think and carried it down to a forested area nearby. I know I couldn’t do that.

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            • You would be surprised what you do when you have to. I had two snakes in my pond dhte last year I was there. I fished both out (no, not with my hands but with a net). One got rehomed at a nearby creek but the other slithered away too quickly. They eat frogs and fish so I didn’t want them in my pond.


  3. Your kindness towards the wee thing is impressive, Kate. I just can’t handle rodents of any size, but I would like to think that if I had one in a similar situation maybe I could hire someone to come in an escort him safely outdoors. You are a superwoman in my book!

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    • They really aren’t hard to rehome. The aren’t super fast like a chipmunk and they don’t bite at all. I had to catch a chipmunk in the house once. It took at least a half hour. He was too fast for me. When I did catch him finally, the bugger bit me. It wasn’t much and didn’t break the skin but I thought he was ungrateful as I escorted him out.


  4. Good on you! I have a colorful story of an old cat and his attempts to catch a mouse I’ll share sometime. I am with you on the glue traps and also I loathe poison. A friend had her dogs poisoned with rat bait and that is one incredibly horrible death. I have always used snap traps which are usually humane but I’d rather they just not come in, I don’t like killing. I should perhaps invest in a humane trap that I could take and release the little squatters. I don’t have a problem with them here but it’d be good to be prepared.

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    • We have a humane trap for mice. In this case the mouse didn’t go in although we only had it set up overnight. Considering I fed him, he probably wasn’t hungry enough. We have caught mice in it. Definitely no on poisons. I have cats that roam the house.

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  5. YAY! Glad you were able to return that little guy to his actual home – maybe he just wanted a little vacation but it was from relaxing for him that’s for sure! Anyway, hopefully he hasn’t reserved another stay at your B&B any time soon!!

    Hugs, Pam

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    • Seriously! When we moved here there were those glue traps that I hate. Anything that walks on them sticks and starves. If you are going to kill a mouse do it humanely. Fortunately for this little guy, he was an easy catch. I don’t think it took 2 minutes after I got down there in earnest.


  6. Aww, how nice you rescued the little fella. There’s one that visits the compost bin (to which I welcome him) but have made sure all entry to the house has been sufficiently blocked. It’s astounding how a tiny little crack can provide enough access for them to come inside.

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