Story: You never know about cats

If I had to describe the essence of Tucker the terrier, I would probably say it all comes down to the Ball.  Tucker lives to play Ball. He could play Ball 24/7. Once the magic word leaves the lips of an unwary human, it lodges firmly in the brain of that obsessed dog like a burr in a collie’s coat. In the winter, Tucker plows through the snow, chasing those uncanny creatures, Snow Balls. In the summer, with his tongue hanging down to his knees, he’ll bring the Ball to anyone with thumbs. “Just one more,” his eyes plead. “I can stop any time. Just. One. More.”

When it’s too wet or snowy or dark–or we just happen to be inside–Tucker has a few official Inside Balls that he’s allowed to play with indoors. Usually when we sit down to watch the most recent episode of Downton Abbey or Justified (and yes both the husband and I watch both) Tucker will dig the Ball out from beneath a pile of stuffies (where we hid it after the last game) and toss it gleefully on the couch at the nearest sucker human.

Athena–who doesn’t understand why dogs exist in the first place and frankly isn’t even sure the other cats have a place in the world–knows this one thing about Tucker. When Tucker starts playing Ball, the cat will  strategically position herself on the coffee table so that Tucker has to walk by her to deliver his beloved to the designated thrower–and then she’ll swat the dog when he gets within reach.

Tucker has learned to be cautious around Athena. When she’s in position, he’ll sit on the other side of the coffee table with the saddest puppy dog face ever. He’ll sigh. Whine softly. Eventually, Athena will be satisfied with the level of torture–or bored with the game–and will sashay off to plot another fun moment.

Then there’s the time she held Tucker’s Ball for ransom.

Athena the cat hold's the dog's ball for ransom.

That was a terrible, horrible moment for the dog. We won’t go there. I think Tucker almost imploded that day.

It shouldn’t surprise anyone, then, that Tucker is a little suspicious of cats in general. So, even though Tucker and Calvin have hobbies in common: chasing things, watching birds and squirrels…

Calvin and Tucker looking out the window.

…you never know about cats. They might not be trustworthy. 

Tucker is a little suspicious of the cat

Without provocation, they could turn on you and…

Calvin loves Tucker

…rub your face.

Calvin loves everyone in the house–human or dog–even if the dog doesn’t know what to do with it.

(Read about Calvin’s kindness to Tucker in the post Oh Brother!)



14 Comments on "Story: You never know about cats"

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  1. Athena sounds like a pretty funny kitty! And that Calvin sure is a sweetie. Hopefully Tucker will realize that not all kitties are untrustworthy ;)

  2. Tucker, us cats are trustworthy! Though we admit that we don’t always act like we are. :)

  3. Oh, that last picture is SO sweet! Unfortunately, our Rita HATES cats, and I’m allergic to them – although I get over it if I live with them for a while. Sadly, I don’t think I’ll get the chance, since Rita hates them so much!

    • Aw, thanks. Calvin loves to rub against the dogs. He’ll jump just to get high enough to rub against our tallest dog’s face. Sometimes I think the pups are confused by it, but it is adorable.

  4. Mr. N is an inveterate cat chaser so I don’t see any dog/chat friendships in his future. Poor Tucker.

    • Our previous dogs thought cats were evil beings that Must Be Chased. We were able to add cats to our family when Jasper and Lilah joined us; they learned how to live peaceably with cats–and vice versa.

  5. Tucker reminds me a lot of my boy Jed. Jed is a lot shyer, he’s a nervous rescue pup, but he’s a very gentle boy with a very big heart. And their faces are rather similar, although Jed is very dark, mostly black, in colour.

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