We have introduced you to Mr Mugate (Moogaati) on a previous occasion. He’s that gorgeous fat cat who is an absolute bully and terrorises the neighbourhood toms while wooing away their women. Well, this is the next chapter in his life. With much fear and trepidation, his owner introduced him to an eight-week-old Cocker Spaniel puppy. It was a “do-or-die” decision, and there are Noddy Badges for who would lose out if this encounter proved fatal.
When the big day arrived, Skye, with a wagging tail, was placed on the floor to meet a suspicious and somewhat hostile Mr Mugate. With not an ounce of fear in her little body, she literally threw herself at the fat cat in a display of introduction and instant affection. Totally miffed, Mr Mugate threw a hissy fit and escaped through the lounge window. Unfortunately, when he returned after sunset, Skye was investigating the cat’s feeder bowl, sniffing but not attempting to eat any of the contents. Mr Mugate rushed up to her and, with a swift swing of his front leg, swiped at the puppy with claws extended but nevertheless short of making physical contact. Skye yelped in fear and quickly retreated to the safety of her new owner’s arms.
A somewhat explosive situation was allayed by separating the two with a baby gate that allowed Skye to keep an eye on Mr Mugate as he went about his evening meal. The puppy was then also fed inside the makeshift “pen” – a shrewd move by her owner as it piqued the fat cat’s curiosity. Despite his attempted display of disdain, Mr Mugate became increasingly inquisitive about the contents of the new arrival’s feeder bowl. Food is synonymous with living, as far as Mr Mugate is concerned, and anything edible is fair game. So, despite himself, the cat jumped over the gate and approached the bowl. Skye was overjoyed at the prospect of a new friend and, with tail beating a tattoo, moved away so that Mr Mugate could have a closer investigation of the meal. You don’t have to ask that fat cat twice to share the spoils and, in no time at all, he had wolfed down the meal.
Mr Mugate’s owner was quick to identify the chink in his cat’s armour and so a new friendship was tentatively begun.
Every Skye mealtime – breakfast, lunch and supper – Mr Mugate was more interested in the Spaniel’s food than his own. This cat has no fixed mealtimes. He eats ferociously throughout the day (and night) from his state-of-the-art automatic feeder which constantly rotates his feed as soon as he empties the contents of his bowl. And every mealtime Skye graciously stood back and allowed the cat to diminish the contents of her bowl. So, it made perfectly good sense when the baby gate was finally removed that Skye nonchalantly strolled across the room to the cat’s feeder and nibbled at the contents. She then snuggled down into the cat’s basket and fell asleep.
It was somewhat astounding that when Mr Mugate returned home from his evening terrorising the neighbourhood and found Skye asleep in his basket that he lay down beside her and closed his eyes. Even more astounding is the fact that Mr Mugate no longer spends so many hours of the day and night stalking his prey. In fact, he has become decidedly domesticated and even follows Skye when she is taken outdoors for her “walkies.”
So it just goes to show that “fighting like cat and dog” is somewhat of a myth. A friendship between these two animal species can be achieved with patience and a little cunning!