Our cats are rather pathetic mousers. They like to chase mice, but they don’t dispatch them. Our offices are downstairs, and sometimes we’ll hear great thundering noises from above as the feline team chase a mouse around. It sounds different than their usual play romping, which also is loud, but perhaps not quite as insistent.
Troi, the small tabby huntress, figured out long ago that if you kill the mouse, the game is over. Since she is well-fed, she’s not into mousing for the food; she’s into it for the sport. In fact, we have occasionally found Troi sitting face to face with an exhausted mouse, waiting for it to get a second wind so she can chase it some more. (In this situation, we take pity on the mouse and return him to the great outdoors.)
Having mice in your house is not a good thing, and at some point, we discovered that the mice tend to travel under the stove behind the drawer. Since our cats won’t hunt, we set mouse traps back there. If a mouse gets inside the house, the cats find and chase it. Eventually the mouse runs behind the stove and encounters the traps. The mouse rarely survives the journey behind the stove.
So this morning, when we found Troi staring the stove, we knew exactly what was behind the drawer. We have a rodent control system that works. The cats aren’t completely useless. We have a feline early warning system to tell us when it’s time to check the traps.