24 June 2011

Feline Friday: ALMOST LOST!

I had one of the worst scares ever last week. In fact, it's taken me a few days to even write about it.

I almost lost Tinsel.

Those of you who know me and/or follow my blog know that I am the most doting of Cat Moms. I pay meticulous attention to everything about Lily and Tinsel and I certainly know their whereabouts at any given moment. They are strictly indoor kitties and are allowed outside only on a leash. So it is shocking that I even came CLOSE to losing one of my cats.

One late afternoon last week, I went outside to water the plants on the patio. I walked out of the house through the door that connects to the garage. The large garage door was up, so I went out to the patio that way.

I had just finished watering the plants and turned off the hose when I looked down and saw TINSEL standing next to me on the patio. "Meow?" she asked. Completely shocked, I reached down, swooped her up in my arms, and ran back inside. After making sure Lily was still in the house, I had to sit down, still squeezing Tinsel tightly. My heart was pounding. I couldn't believe what had just happened. How did Tinsel get outside?

As it turned out, the door that connects our house to the garage hadn't latched completely, and the wind blowing in through the large garage door must have forced it open slightly. Tinsel, ever on the ready to make The Great Escape, must have slipped out the back door the minute it cracked open.

The more I thought about it, the more frightened I became. We have a side-facing garage, so in order for Tinsel to have appeared on the patio as she did, she had to have walked all the way through the garage, out the big door, down the driveway, and around the back of the house to the patio to find me.

Any number of things could have happened to her along the way. What if a car had pulled into our driveway? What if she had continued down the driveway into the street? What if the noise from the garden hose had scared her? If I had still been watering plants as she made her exit, I know she wouldn't have approached the patio. She could have easily escaped and (save for the fact that she has a microchip) I might never have found her.

Although I'm always mindful of the doors, this little incident has made me even more vigilant. I'm extra careful to be sure the back door latches now, and I try to keep the garage doors closed anytime I'm outside. During the warmer months, Tinsel waits for the opportunity to slip out the door, so the extra attention is warranted.

I'd like to think that maybe Tinsel wouldn't have left the yard. Perhaps she wouldn't have tried to to run away. After all, she did come around to the patio to find me as if to say, "Hai, Mom! Luk at meee!" Maybe that's all she wanted to do. She knows we love her. And even though she has to put up with Lily, I can't imagine that Tinsel would want to stray too far from her Forever Home.

But believe me, I'm not going to give her the chance!


Jill/Twipply Skwood said...

Sugar used to have this little game he LOVED to play for YEARS where he would DART out the door any time he got the chance. He is also a strictly indoor cat and I remember one time he was LOST for quite awhile after he succeeded in his game. It was so scary.

Luckily since we now keep the bedroom door shut during the day, he has (for the most part - we still have to be careful) replaced his "dart out the back door" game with a "dart into the bedroom" game. It's a better game all around, because I don't mind him winning every so often.

Glad your Tinsel nightmare is over and be careful! If it's any consolation, the few times Sugar really did score big on his "dart out the door" game, he always came back (albeit not always quickly enough to prevent heart attacks and high anxiety in his owners).

KarenSue said...

So glad she did not get lost, this happened to my ddil recently, her cat Caztor got out. She was trying to be so brave, but you could tell she was devastated.

We lucked out,the next day ddil had a Princess House party and one of the guests could see how sad ddil was, so we told her all about the missing cat. Later that night, her husband said "there's a black and white cat on our fence" she knew who to call.

Sharon W. said...

My cat Lucky would dart out the front door once in awhile. It scared me also. One day dd drove into the driveway and asked why Lucky was out sitting on the front porch meowing. I was looking for her, but in the house. She must have heard me calling her and decided to answer. Kitties can sneak out very quietly.

Linda said...

Oh my goodness! I'm so glad that Tinsel wasn't lost. Lately Tiger has been trying to dart out the door to go in the garage. It makes me nervous because she is an indoor only kitty too. I'd like to think she would come back if she got out but you just don't know.

Kristina said...

Glad to hear that Tinsel found you and didn't wander any further. Tucker got out once and probably would have stayed out had I not found him and brought him back inside. I think he wanted an adventure. :)

Daisy said...

Wow, that is skerry! My Mommeh worries that if I ever got out, I would never be able to fend for myself. I'm glad there was a happy ending!

Fonda said...

I'm surprised she didn't kick Lily out and lead her astray, then hightail it back inside before being caught! :) she loves her human, it's obvious.