It’s no secret that Izzy doesn’t like cats. Every time he sees one — across the street or across the universe — he charges. Growls. Appears ready to rip the cat to shreds. The several times he’s gotten away from me, it’s because he’s been chasing a cat.
Since we moved to my townhouse in Durham, we’ve come face-to-face with a black cat who appears to have no fear of dogs. One morning, Izzy and I headed for the walkway into the wooded area in the middle of the neighborhood. It’s a favorite place to walk because there’s a pathway that circles and cuts through the woods. It’s quiet in there and the smells rival the forests leading to the lake I used to visit as a child. Izzy snuffles around, exploring with a lighter pep in his step. And, of course, he’s a boy, so he leaves his mark on almost every tree.
On that particular morning, a black cat sat on the walkway leading into the woods. I truly expected that the cat would flee as soon as seeing us, but just the opposite happened.
The cat began walking toward us. Izzy charged forward, ready to chew that cat. Then, he stopped. And the cat kept coming. Running!
Is this cat rabid, I thought. What the hell?
Several days later, we rounded the corner to head home and spotted the black cat coming toward us. I prepared to sprint in the opposite direction, but the cat didn’t chase us this time. Instead, the cat dropped itself into the nearest storm drain and disappeared. Once again, Izzy glanced at me, puzzled. And when we went by the storm drain, we both peered down, wondering where the cat went.
The very next morning, we walked down Ellis Road outside the development. We were early, the sky had just started to lighten and only a few cars drown down the road toward Route 147, a major highway leading to I-40.
My mind buzzed with work that I had to accomplish, so I wasn’t paying attention. Izzy was, though, and when he started pulling at the leash and growling, I came out of my reverie to see…yup, the black cat.
He sat on a little rise overlooking the parking lot, forcing us to walk right by him. The cat sat on the rise like a little king and licked his paws. Lazily. How brash, I thought.
Izzy pranced and watched the cat with superstition, but we kept moving.
This morning, Izzy and I both realized something surprising. That black cat that had chased us wasn’t the only one in the neighborhood.
This morning, we ran into the storm drain cat again, a fluffy, Persian mix. She appears rather wild because as soon as she saw us, she dropped herself into the storm drain again. And, again, Izzy stared down the drain, wondering where the cat went. When I looked down the hole, I couldn’t see the cat. The drain drops down at least twelve feet. WTF. Where does the damn cat go?
Then we saw the black cat who lives near Ellis Road. She’s small, dainty, unperturbed, and sits on the hill overlooking the homes, happy to simply sit.
The attack cat is brash and when I saw it more closely, his ear is a bit crooked. Whether he lives with another dog and is comfortable with them or whether he is more mountain lion than house cat.
One or three, Izzy still wants a bit out of them and it’ll be interesting to see whether we can dodge them when we walk the neighborhood in the upcoming days. In the meantime, at least we know it’s not one cat with a split personality!