Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Cat saves boy from dog attack

Warning: this child gets bitten only once by the dog, but it is a surprisingly aggressive bite on the leg, and will make it clear to you how children can be killed by a dog. It surprised me, so it will surprise you. But the cat is the immediate hero and the child suffers just the one bite.

Many cats are very protective. A long while ago (1986), my young female cat Bramble got a plastic shopping bag caught over her head and went zooming around my then-apartment, making a horrendous racket with her hissing and the bag rattling behind her. I finally cornered her and was getting the bag off her neck (she was squalling and hissing the entire time, but not biting me) and Rastus, my very first cat, who had never shown an aggressive cell in his body, leaped on my head with claws a-blazing, not realizing I was helping Bramble. From all the signs Bramble was giving, I was killing her.

I learned that day that Rastus was going to protect any creature he felt was in danger...even if the woman he appeared to love deeply was the one causing the damage.

I freed Bramble, but suffered a deep gash in my scalp and across my nose and eyebrow--the day before my job interview with Ithaca College Campus Safety. I actually scored points in the interview. The interviewers assumed these were scars from my current job with the SPCA. I got the job.

Interestingly enough, the majority of people who saw the damage on my face expected me to have Rastus put down...not realizing that if someone broke into my house and I was the one screaming, Rastus would likely come to my defense as well. People did not see the incident as a "cat protecting someone who was being hurt" but as "a cat who DARED to attack a human."

It's a good thing that the cat in this video didn't stick to her "stereotype" by avoiding attacking a dog. She reacted to defend a creature in danger. Perhaps if that young boy had been beating the dog, she would have reacted as well...against the boy. Who knows? The fact is, cats are furry little bundles of thought,emotion, and bravery.

Not the vermin some people would like to say they are.

I'm sure the dog has a story as well. He was apparently owned by the neighbor. Clearly the dog initially saw the movement of the child from the other side of the car (you can see him go on the alert--he could not have seen the whole child from his viewpoint under the car), and attacked basically on instinct. This story is not only about a brave cat defending a child, but a dog who was wandering where he should never have been. In a better life, this might have been a story about this very same dog protecting his owner against a robber or another dog.

The cat's story is about her. The dog's story is about us.

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