Today I saw my 8 month old kitten in the pine tree at the end of a branch. A spot that he normally not chooses to sit on. Then when I looked closer I saw the big fat red tomcat from across the street sitting at the beginning of the branch close to the trunk. For a moment I experienced anger coming up, but as soon as it came it went away. This next door cat has caused us a lot of misery with his never ending attacking of all the other cats in the neighborhood. My kitten was grunting at the big fat tomcat, the tomcat didn’t seem at ease high up in the tree. The tomcat named Pallino had probably been chasing our kitten Sieb, since Sieb is much faster than good old fat Pallino he climbed the tree. Last summer Pallino found out that he was capable of climbing trees so more threat for the neighborhood cats.
As I said at first I felt anger responding to memories of Pallino and his behavior. Then I realised that it is a matter of abuse, his owners refuse to castrate Pallino for whatever reason, so Pallino keeps acting within his program as a tomcat with all consequences. I tried to throw pebbles against his butt, but he didn’t really notice it. I also considered it as a mean action to take. So I tried to make a plan on how to get Pallino out of the pine tree. In the end I took a broom and started softly jabbing him to make him go out of the tree. He got meanly angry with the broom and wouldn’t let go, while making bizar screaming sounds. He was afraid to fall down and grabbed the tree firmly. So plan B also failed. Then one of my neighbors walked by and asked what I was doing, I explained the situation. He said: “Just give me the broom”, and started pushing the cat out of the tree. I had been too soft on the tomcat out of fear to hurt him or make his owners mad, you never know who is watching behind the closed curtains. I took my kitten Sieb at least half a hour before he felt sure enough to get out of the tree.
Repeatedly I hear people say how beautiful the animal kingdom is, they talk about it in a kind of romantic way. I never understood this, why we should make the animal kingdom more than humans or nature. There are a lot of examples in the animal kingdom that show us how much we are walking minds and how much more they are aware, but don’t let us forget that also animals live in this reality and are equipped with an ego just as we and run on a pre-programming. We have the responsibility to take care of our domestic animals in the best interest of all. Acting out of emotions and feelings as love will not only lead to abuse of the animal, but will affect his direct surroundings.
Wanting or longing for an animal isn’t different then wanting a new car, pair of jeans or a new couch. The difference is the amount of suffering that’s opposed upon the wanted item and the consequences attached to that. My other neighbor has a special dog that is trained to search for truffles, the truffle season takes only place in a short period of the year. So within the season the dog is treated well and walked with, during the rest of the year the dog stays in his outside cage and doesn’t get much attention. During the day and night the dog cries in his cage. I find it hard to be exposed to this sound and not being able to do or mean something to the dog. Even if I should walk this dog, then I do not consider all the other dogs in the same situation and make this one special due to my experience of his crying. These truffle dogs and also hunting dogs are abandoned as soon as they do not perform optimal anymore. The woods have lots of dogs that roam through nature, a real problem which nobody addresses and on which there are no laws or legislations.
We can indeed learn from the animal kingdom how to stick to our principles and how to act and function as a group without specialness issues.