Surprise! A Cat Hides in a Box

A recipe for fun in a house of dogs and cats

It was a recipe guaranteed to produce hilariousness:


  • 1 box
  • 1 small and pouncy dragon cat (Elsa Clair)
  • 3 nosy dogs
  • 4 curious cats


Let 1 cat jump into the box, allowing the flaps to close over her, thus hiding her completely.

Grab iPhone 6 Plus, set to Video, and click on the red Record button.

Wait for chaos to ensue.

Waiting for something to happen

As I sat on the cold hallway floor, I envisioned 47 different scenarios, each generating more LOLs than the last.

Elsa Clair would contain her coiled energy only so long before she bursts out of the box like the creature in the movie Alien.

Or maybe Calvin would hop on the box, unaware of the danger that lurks beneath the cardboard, until an Elsa Clair earthquake rocks the surface, tumbling the mancat off as he scrambles for safety.

Or maybe Tucker would drop his ball on the box, pawing it several times before the flaps seem to move of their own accord, causing the poor dog to abandon his Precious until he can figure out what devilment is toying with his terrier brain.

It could be anything, but I was sure it was going to be spectacularly funny.

It begins… or does it?

In less than a minute, Calvin approached the box. This was it! I braced myself as he stretched himself out and performed a version of his sneaky sniff (usually used when strange people enter our home and he has to know about them without them realizing he’s inspecting.)

And… nothing.

A sudden jangly sound of a dog floppity startled the cat, and he walked away.

Calvin inspects the box in which Elsa Clair is hiding

Enter Jasper. He’s got a good nose; maybe he would investigate the primed and loaded box.

And… nothing.

The dog walked right in front of the camera, without a glance in the box’s general direction.

Then Lilah strolled in. I could tell she knew something was in the box. Inhaling deeply, she thoroughly inspected the package. From two different angles. Any second now, Elsa Clair would pop out and I’ll have recorded it and then I’ll post it on YouTube where it will get a bizillion jillion views (a number I learned this weekend from a young friend I met at a Chinese New Year party).

Lilah inspects the box where Elsa Clair is hiding

And… nothing.

She left. Then came back. And stopped, creating an unintentional fade-to-black moment for my video masterpiece.

Trying to hold the phone steady with my left hand, I reach out with my right to encourage Lilah to move along. Which she did, at a pace that could only be described as “mosey.” It’s only later I realize the dog’s tail feathers were still tickling the corner of the frame.

Lilah's hindquarters are in the way.


The big reveal

I was about to give up when I observed a slight twitch to one of the box flaps. Elsa Clair will now make a grand and glorious, fast and furious, can’t-contain-curious leap from her hiding spot. I was ready. I thought at least I’d capture that.

And… our normally light-speed cat oozed out of the box. Took a moment to contemplate the ceiling. Briefly reconsidered whether to rebox herself. Flicked her tail. And with an adagio grace, exited stage left.

Elsa Clair peeks out of a box

In the end, I have two minutes of video illustrating exactly what life with dogs and cats is all about. It’s full of surprises, but never the ones you expect.

For those who are interested, here’s the video, in all it’s glory. My husband and I actually did think it was pretty entertaining because one can’t help but look at that box and expect something fascinating or funny to happen.  The fun is in the (admittedly unresolved) tension and the personalities of the characters.

But I’m not expecting the bazillion jillion views. Maybe about seven or so.

8 Comments on "Surprise! A Cat Hides in a Box"

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  1. That is cute and a fun way to spend an afternoon!

  2. MOL ! Cats can be so surprising ! Purrs

  3. Beth says:

    If you hadn’t been prepared, then all those scenes and more would have happened. Her tail has a life of its own. My cat rarely moves his tail, and never like that.

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