Three years ago, while visiting the west coast, we spent some fun time at the San Francisco zoo. while strolling through their gift shop, on a whim, i spent $5 for a small and cute little finger puppet. it is a little mouse. the thing that made this a stupid purchase was because i was buying it with the intent to bring home for my cat. i guess in retrospect, it would've been even crazier to bring her a tee shirt that said, "my owner went to san francisco zoo and all i got was this t-shirt!" nevertheless, it is pretty insane to bring home a memento of a trip to your....CAT!
well, i'll tell you what. that was the best $5 i have ever spent! dusty LOVES, loves, loves that mouse, and three years later, it is still about the only toy she ever plays with on a daily basis. her only other favorite (out of a whole box assortment) is the rumpled up balls of no-win-lottery tickets that she chases around and actually retrieves them for us to "flick" across the room again. (funny, cause i've never been successful in teaching any of my dogs to retrieve/fetch, but this cat as well as our previous cat never were taught, and yet, they fetch and retrieve until you're really sick of playing it over and over.)
last night, about 5 minutes after i crawled in bed, i heard the cat's proud (and loud) announcement, "icaughtsomethingforyou; icaughtsomethingforyou. wait'll y'see this!" kind of a meow-cry! with that, she RAN upstairs, RAN through the hall, RAN into my bedroom, RAN up onto my bed..yowling the whole time...and proudly dropped her mouse in front of me. this morning i came out of the shower and there sitting waiting for me was "mouse." on mornings that i decide to sleep in, always waiting at the bedroom door for me when i wake, is "mouse" and proud miss dusty right nearby.
it's not the plushness or size that makes this toy so special for her cause i've since bought other little miscellaneous and similar toys, none of which she looks at after a few fetches. she just struts away in a typical cat-like, "fer-gedd-a-boud-it." do you think she really knows that this one is a mouse?? never having seen a mouse (thank God!), does she really think this is a real mouse?? who told her that cats like mice, anyway? where did this "imprint" come from? and why does she appear to enjoy so much the fact that i tell her over and over and over and over what a good girl she is for bringing me the same old "dead mouse" day after day?
i don't get it. but i AM glad that this well-spent five bucks, spent so many years ago, seems to have bought so much JOY for a furry little devotee.