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Barmy Blue's Bland Blog

Never Bring a Dog to a Cat Fight

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So. I made a little mistake today.
You already know we have a lot of cats around here. Iíve had cats before too. So I know cats fight. Back when we had cats hearing any cat meowing outside sent us into a panic in case it was one or ours. So we know that cats fight. A lot.
They donít fight all of the time but every so often we have a week or so of cat fights and constant meowing. They walk through the garden meowing a low meow. I canít be 100% certain but Iíd guess this comes down to one or two things.
1. The desire to mate
2. The desire for territory
The latter applying when a cat has been away for a while and comes back or a new cat moves in. The internet tells me that neutering should reduce these situations and it makes sense, since it didnít happen that much with our cats as they were neutered. I canít speak for the cats around here now though.
Since we havenít had cats for quite some time we can look on these situations without fear and just see them as amusing/a nuisance.
Iíll usually ignore a patrolling cat or try to see which one it is. I might, very rarely, see if itís one that will say hello to me. But when they fight Iíll ignore them until they become annoying, they also rile the dog up sometimes too, then quite often Iíll scare them off and if that fails put the dog on the lead and let her go in the garden. That shifts them pretty quick. But, to be clear, I would NEVER DELIBERATELY let her get hold of a cat. I love cats and I love my dog so I wouldnít want either to get hurt. Iím always super mindful of it.

Today. Well this evening. I heard a very close cat fight, in the garden, right next to the house in fact. Eventually I got sick of it and decided to chase them off. It was dark so I couldnít see them and they completely ignored me anyway.

So I put the lead on the dog and let her go out. She went the wrong way and peed in the dark then sniffed around. But the cats stopped yowling so I figured theyíd moved on. Result.
But no. A few minutes later I heard them out front. Very loud. I looked out of the windows and saw nothing but they were very close, maybe in the street or right by the door.
The dog was laying in the hallway not bothered this time and I figured they were in the street so I put on my shoes and poked my head out of the door. There was the fluffy ginger one and a mainly black black and white fluffy one at the gate. The dog still not interested so I moved a little closer, opening the door a little more but I thought I was blocking the gap with my legs and tried to scare them off. Then the ginger one lunged at the black and white one and all hell broke loose.

The dog wriggled past me before I could pin her against the wall and lunged at them, tripping over them. There was a scuffle as I, shocked, scream Yui! One cat ran across the road and the other back into the garden. I tried to grab the dog and failed but thankfully she chased the one that ran back into the garden, it ran under the gate that we canít open anyway, and now the dog was safely contained, for now. By this time mum had come out and Yuki, realising that she couldnít get the cat decided to find the other one and came back. She very nearly wriggled past us but mum managed to grab her tail and I got her neck, almost losing it again but this time managed to get her collar.
You see, I can grab her fur and it wonít hurt her too much, if I grab enough of it, because itís so thick but it can slip through my fingers. But once I have her collar sheís mine. Getting her by the scruff is too tricky in a fast-paced situation. She is a big dog donít forget. Fully grown adult Siberian husky. Snd I do worry that I might catch the little wart on her neck. (we found a little lump on the side of her neck a few years ago. She was due her jabs so mum mentioned it then but couldnít find it so I marked the area with a very little bit of blue food colouring for her to show it to the vet the next day. You know, because strange lumps could be cancer. But he checked it and said it was just a wart and nothing to worry about but that we should let him know if it started getting bigger. Itís been the same size since we found it but I worry that I might scratch it when Iím scratching her neck sometimes.)

Anyway. We drag her inside and all is well. I canít remember every detail of the scuffle but Iím very sure that she didnít manage to pick one up (cats can die if dogs shake them so I worry about it). There was some fur left in the street but not Yuiís. Not a lot. Just looked like a normal amount for a shedding cat. No clumps with bloody flesh or anything. Both cats were well enough to run away so nothing obviously broken. The fact that she tripped over them before she could grab them was very helpful for them because it gave them time to react to her.
I felt along her tail for signs of injury because mum was worried that sheíd pulled her tail but I donít think there was time for her to do damage because Iíd got hold of the collar before Yuki could pull away.
Then I looked at her teeth for any signs of blood. She has pretty big canines. But no obvious signs of blood or fur. There was a little blood on her snout and I said to her I hope thatís your blood. Not because I want her to be hurt but because if one of the cats were bleeding it could be a serious injury. I wiped at it. They were only three tiny blood spots. We concluded that sheís just been caught ever so slightly by a catís claws. Hardly surprising. Itís about the same level of injury I told you about when I said hello to one of the other cats. It doesnít seem to cause her pain and is not close to her eye, nose or whiskers, so it seems perfectly fine.

I have always been hyper vigilant when opening the door when sheís at home but itís never been a problem before.
She has had a few moments before when sheís escaped us so I know what to expect.
The first time was in the park when weíd only had her a couple of weeks. Two German shepherds chased her and she slipped out of her collar (it was too big for her. Because theyíre so fluffy huskies have a very deceptive neck) and there was no way I could catch her. No point running either (because that would probably do me an injury since Iím so unfit) so I walked home asking everyone I saw if theyíd seen a husky. Mum was at home that day and it turns out Yuki (then Saskia) had run straight home and mum had let her in. All was well.

Another time we let her run around a small childrenís park (which can be fully enclosed when you shut both gates). Mum and another dog owner would do this at night. We ere going to see the family and wanted to tire her out beforehand. But Yuki wrapped herself around a tree and wriggled out of her harness (which we used at the time). It would have been okay if someone hadnít opened the gate. She ran straight out and we hat to chase her down the street. Thankfully she decided to explore everyoneís gardens and we were able to corner and catch her.
Also a few times she has been in the garden off lead (itís not a very big garden) and disappeared in the undergrowth and refused/been unable to get herself out. The garden is completely closed off except for the back. We think itís fenced but we donít know for sure because we canít see it, on account of the undergrowth, or should I say overgrowth. Which is why she goes in the garden on a lead now.
Also once when I took her out for her street walk with me (which is at night so less people) her lead wasnít on properly and she broke free but thankfully I was trying to pull her out of the way of another dog and she just stood there. The owner of the other dog saw what was happening and stayed where she was keeping her dog still. As both dogs were having a staring contest there was no panic and I was able to put the lead back on properly and we went our separate ways.
Once or twice I have dropped the lead and sheís gotten ahead of me but, so far, hasnít run too far so that I canít catch her. Yet. I am always worried that one day it might happen.
But, and trust me I have hypothesised this many many many times, IF she were to escape she is microchipped with OUR details because when the dog was transferred to us we made sure to change her details with the microchip company. The local vet knows her. She is fully vaccinated and (if itís daytime) she has a collar with our name and phone number.
We do take it off at night because her fur is so thick we want to give her neck a rest. I was going to say break but didnít like how that sounded. But if it is the early morning and she doesnít have her collar I am beyond hyper aware of her.

So. Anyway. That is what happens when you bring a dog to a cat fight.
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My Snow Dog

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