Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Noise in the Dark

So, it's 3 am, and I'm awake. Not of my own volition, of course, but because of a cat. Regular readers will perhaps think this has to do with Peepers, our newest addition to the family, but in fact, it has to do with Baby Boy, our "middle" cat. All I saw was the field of battle AFTER it happened, I have NO IDEA how it got to be the way it was.

I awoke to the sounds of large objects crashing to the ground - I got up instantly and ran to our kitchen/living room open-concept area. One of our heavy kitchen chairs was knocked over. On the other side of the double room, a tv tray had also been knocked down. The phone was knocked off the hook, and the answering machine had become unplugged. These things only caught my attention for a second though - what I immediately became concerned with was the retreating back end of Baby Boy, launching himself behind the tv console. I said "Baby!", and could hear him making tearing noises at the carpet, mingled with a gagging sound. I ran over to him, and saw him tearing at the floor or the wall, like he was trying to dig a hole to get further away. When he calmed down enough to see it was me, he just sat there, gagging, which gave way to heavily laboured breathing, as if he had just ran a race. I spoke to him in the soothing, mommy-tone that he associates with good things and comfort. I caught his eye, and gave him the "slow blink", that cats communicate "all's well" with. I tried to peer around the back end, to see if he was all right (the kitchen chair is so heavy, I was really worried if it had caught him in the wrong way as it fell, he could have broken a paw). I started to put things back to normal, while Baby calmed down. Molly, the old girl cat, was sitting in the corner near the tv tray. If she knew what happened, she wasn't letting on. :)

Eventually, Baby made his way out from behind the tv. I saw that underneath him, he had one of the curtain tiebacks. I think he must have run into it as he dashed by the curtains towards the tv. After he came out, he went straight down to the basement. By this time, of course, Casey was wide awake and barking, so I had to let her go outside (being woken early by all that noise makes a puppy need to use the facilities).

I followed Baby downstairs, and spoke again in soothing tones. He looked sufficiently calm that I could touch him now, so I stroked him a little, and he started to purr. I checked his paws - no sign of tenderness, so a-okay there. He's now resting comfortably under the couch in the basement, where it's dark, and nice and cool on a stuffy summer night like tonight. Casey is trying to sleep down here too, with all this noise and light and such. Peepers, thank God, is tucked away safely in the bedroom right now, and missed out on all this mess. And I'm hoping I can sneak off to bed in a little while, once everything seems sufficiently calm.

But the question remains: what exactly happened? Was Baby spooked by something? Did Molly hiss at him, and it sent him over the edge? Was he trying to catch a moth in a precarious position and started a chain reaction of destruction? I guess we'll never know for sure. :)