New cats in our territory give us agita. Rightfully so, as we never did catch The Grand Matriarch. All it takes is one intact beau, and we’re back to being buried by kittens.
When we noticed Jerky McJerkington hanging over around our neighbor’s house, panic ensued. We’ve come to recognize most of the Dale Road cats, and this little Tuxedo kitty was definitely not amongst the sterilized crew from 2013 (The only Tuxedo cats we had came from the Ehlers Lane extension).
And here I thought we might have gotten out of the Trap/Neuter/Release business. Not so much.
Ben dutifully set the trap one Saturday evening, and Jerky McJerkington was extremely cooperative in getting himself trapped.
Where he wasn’t so cooperative was during his transfer from trap to cage the following Sunday morning. This process is what earned him his name (actually, his name was something much less family friendly. We cleaned it up for the blog).
When it comes to transferring the kitties from trap to cage, Ben and I usually tackle this as a team effort. I think it has been so long since we last had to do this that Ben forgot how wily these critters can be, and tried to take on the transfer himself. Sure, it’s easy enough to get the captured kitty to leave the trap and enter the cage – but it’s that split second when you pull the trap away from the cage door right before slamming it shut that’s so critical.
Jerky made his escape during that split second, and found a small degree of freedom in our guest room (fortunately, the guest room door was shut).
Only then did Ben shout for my assistance. I entered the room to find the guest mattress and box spring upended, forming a sort of tunnel that lead into the open cage.
“He’s in between the mattress and the wall,” Ben explained. “I think if you walk to the other end of the mattress and start moving towards him along the wall, he’ll get scared into running into the cage.”
It was a foolproof plan. Except for the fact that Jerky decided to escape vertically, not horizontally. The cat leaped onto the windowsill, climbed each slat of our Ikea Blinds until he reached the very top, and hung on for dear life when he had nowhere else to go.
Neither Ben nor I are gifted with height, mind you. Trying to pry him off the top of our mini blinds made us both wish we had go go gadget arms. Ben emerged the victor, grabbing Jerky by the scruff of the neck and tossing him into the cage. I was quick to slam the door shut behind him.