Polly, our cat, is supposed to be an indoor cat. She is usually allowed outside only when supervised by one of us. Generally she is quite happy with that arrangement as she’s rather timid. On a sunny day she will come outside and enjoy rolling on the warm concrete outside the back door or exploring a couple of metres away from it but at the slightest scary noise she scuttles back inside to the safety of her “apartment” in our linen cupboard or occasionally under our spare bed. Until today that is.
Today she must have slipped out the back door unnoticed when I let Cindy out or when I went to get the post. It’s happened a couple of times but normally I spot her within a few minutes and as soon as I open the back door she comes back . Polly’s normal routine is to sleep either in the linen cupboard or in the living room at night. When I get up she retires to her apartment until mid afternoon. Usually she’ll reappear around four o’clock demanding dinner so it didn’t worry me that I hadn’t seen her all day. It wasn’t until around 5pm that Hubby asked “Where’s Polly?” she hadn’t come out for her food which is highly unusual so we were a bit concerned. Hubby said that he’d seen her sleeping on the couch at around 6am. Neither of us had seen her since so we started looking in all her hidey holes but she wasn’t in any of them. Not in her apartment or behind the couch, not behind the computer desk, under the spare bed or even under our bed. I even opened the door of the doll room in case she’d sneaked in there but she hadn’t. That meant that she had to be outside. Realising that she could have been out there for hours we became very concerned. Polly has never been outside for more than half an hour since we found her as an abandoned kitten. It had rained during the afternoon so we thought that she’d probably look for a place to shelter from the rain and the scary birds. Polly is more scared of birds than they are of her I’m sure. Hubby checked the garage even though Polly has never ventured that far from the house, she wasn’t there. Then he suggested that she might be hiding under the floorboards of our “rustic” shed. It was a good guess. When I got down on my knees to look I saw her peering out at me.
Unfortunately getting her out was not that easy as she was very upset. I called her and she came closer but she didn’t want to leave the safety of her hidey hole. She made growly noises in her throat, if you have ever come across a feral cat you might have some idea of the sound I mean. She miaowed a few times too but she wouldn’t come out even after I talked to her and tried to tempt her out with a dish of food. I think she was telling me what a horrible time she’d had and how mean I was to shut the door so she couldn’t get back inside. After several minutes Hubby suggested that he have a go at enticing her out. I think Polly likes him better than me so I agreed and went inside to watch out of the kitchen window. Hubby can’t kneel because of arthritis so he sat a couple of metres away on a bench and kept talking to Polly. However, after more time had passed and she still wouldn’t come out he decided that he’d have to try something else. He found a few small pebbles and tossed them onto the floor of the shed. The noise startled Polly and she decided to make a run for it. I saw her come out from underneath and race for the safety of the open back door. She disappeared up the passage before either of us could see where she went.
I thought that we probably wouldn’t see her for hours but a short time later she came out of her hiding place to eat and then back into the living room where we were eating dinner. She acted as if nothing had happened, rolling around on the carpet and later settling down to sleep on a favourite chair in the dining room where we have our computer desks.
Polly may have forgotten all about her ordeal although I won’t be sure of that until I see how she reacts next time I open the back door but Hubby and I won’t forget how worried we were for a long time. You can me sure that I won’t be leaving the back door open for one minute if I’m not watching it!