One of our cats escaped this afternoon.
The background is that I wanted to roll back up the awning by the pool almost a week ago, but had to wait for a couple of days worth of sunny weather for it to dry out after all the rain, and before the snow started, so it didn’t mildew over the winter. The old (partially plastic) hand crank pole shattered when I tried to retract the awning. Fine. I was able to temporarily swipe an all metal one from the main patio by the house, but it was too short for long term use. No way was I going to climb on a storage trunk to reach the crank every time I want to extend or retract the awning down by the pool, so I had to order a new 6’6″ one. Besides, I want the shorter one back where it belongs for next summer.
The new hand crank arrived today, ~early-mid afternoon, so I unpacked it, and opened the sliders to go outside to hang it where it belongs. That’s when Ozzie slipped outside behind me, before I could close the sliders. DAMMIT! There was no point chasing the old geezer, or yelling after him; he would have run away even faster to explore the great outdoors. Hours later, he still hadn’t returned, and we had to leave to go to a birthday dinner. We “Motel 6’d” him, and left the patio and deck lights on.
More hours pass after we get home, and finish watching Star Trek on MeTV. Still no Ozzie. Then, just when I was ready to turn off the lights, he appeared by the patio sliders. “Get the dog!” I yelled. “Get the dog. NOW!” Ozzie would not come inside while the dog was there staring at him. My other half grabbed Ben by his collar and pulled him away. Ozzie was a little skittish, but in he came, thawed out a bit (it was maybe high teens to low 20s Fahrenheit), and demanded dinner.
That little guy scarfed down an entire can of food faster than I’ve ever seen him eat. He’s missing teeth, and has various other issues that make it tricky for him to eat dry food, unless it’s mixed in with canned stuff, and he’s been on a special urinary tract formula food, ever since he passed a couple of kidney stones ~two months ago.
After he was done with dinner, he decided my lap was the best place in the house, and hasn’t left it since. I’m so glad we have him back. He’s a special needs senior citizen cat, so to speak — not mentally, but physically. I would have felt awful if a fox had gotten him, or we’d found him frozen to death.
If I’m lucky, he got his big outdoors adventure out of his system, and won’t try that again. Phew!