Saturday, May 23, 2015

About A Comment

TBT HERE:  We got a harsh comment from JB's Small World about the wild rabbit Marley caught Thursday.  The comment was "This is truly despicable! How horrid to post this."  I wanted to ask JB's person if he/she wanted to discuss it privately, but I couldn't find a way, so I am mentioning it here.

This is not to start a big argument or cause any contention.  And I invite JB's person to contact me privately at the email listed near the top of the sidebar for polite civil discussion and a frank exchange of views.

However, I consider it natural that cats be allowed outside when there are safe situations in order for them to experience the fullness of their nature.  And as our semi-wild fenced-in backyard is home to numerous small wild critters that are natural cat-prey, it seems perfectly normal to me that they catch and eat some of them.  I certainly do not miss the various mice, moles, voles, and shrews they catch.  As a gardener, I don't miss the occasional young bunny they catch either.  In fact, I wish they could catch some of the squirrels who dig up my crocus bulbs and veggie seedlings.  I have found and killed a few squirrels, young groundhogs and rabbits myself just to reduce the damage in the garden!

Does one condemn foxes for catching numerous rodents each day or hawks for catching songbirds?

Yes, the cats catch several birds each year.  I regret the loss of a finch or cardinal, but they catch more sparrows and starlings, and there are plenty of those around (and always will be).  As far as the songbirds go, I feed them year-round, and there are many more here now then when I moved in.  If I help a dozen thrive and the cats get 2, that's a gain for the songbirds.

I understand that some people are very reasonably saddened when cats catch desirable birds or "cute small mammals".  Everyone has some animals they prefer above others.  But "This is truly despicable! How horrid to post this."  is not the best way to express oneself...

I would easily understand and accept "We feel sorry for the poor little bunny" or "We wish they hadn't caught that bunny" without complaint.  But calling me "despicable" and "horrid" required a response.

Thank you,
Mark

18 comments:

Summer at sparklecat.com said...

JB's human cares for some wild bunnies in her yard and the bunnies even have their own Facebook page, so given that context, her reaction is understandable.

Mark's Mews (Ayla, Iza, and Marley) said...

JB did not mention that, nor did the blog lead us to such a site about cared-for bunnies.

As cats, did we deserve "despicable" and "horrid" for catching one in our own back yard?

Megan said...

I keep an open mind about your cats and the local wildlife, Mark. In Australia, there is a lot of emphasis on not allowing cats out after dusk due to the impact they have on native wildlife. In some metropolitan areas, it's a real problem. However, in the past I have owned a cat that had spent almost all his life outdoors before we got him at age 8, and there was no way that he could become an entirely indoor cat. Yes, he did some damage to the wildlife. For the next cat, however, who came to us as a kitten, we installed a large Catmax cat enclosure in the backyard. He could watch the birds, snakes (!!!) and other animals but couldn't get to them and, fortunately, they couldn't get to him. Occasionally he managed to grab a tiny skink! LOL

But ... that's me and here, not you and there. I accept that you are a very responsible pet owner and would have reflected on the decisions that you make.

I do find some of the close-ups of the hunting a bit gruesome but you warn readers what's coming and you don't force us to keep reading, so that's my problem, not yours.

I hope that the person who left the comment does follow up with an email so that she can share her views about rabbits with you. She may persuade you to change your ways - but I think she'll need to present logical and considered arguments rather than emotive words in order to do so.

Megan
Sydney, Australia

Fuzzy Tales said...

Megan's comment echos a lot of what I had thought to post. You ARE a very responsible caretaker and while I wouldn't have the heart to let my cats have a bunny or even the occasional mole in my tiny back space, I understand why you do. (Mine wouldn't kill and eat them, they just toy with the poor things and cause a slow, horrible death.)

The bottom line is that it's our choice to continue reading or not, when we're warned of something gruesome. Nature IS often gruesome, and I think it's only as we've become such "antibacterial" urban dwellers that we've lost the connection with the Earth, with the understanding of where our food comes from, etc. (But that's branching out!)

Peace.

Brian said...

Yep, they should have just skipped it and moved on.

pilch92 15andmeowing said...

I always feel bad for the bunnies, but wouldn't judge because my hubby puts out mole poison, mouse traps, etc.- in the country, you do what you gotta do.
Thanks for visiting us on our blogversary and being our friend.

Quinn and Angel brandi said...

I understood it to be what it was: Cats are hunters. That is their nature. I love bunnies, too (in my old neighborhood one of the residents there grew clover just for the rabbits!) but they can also damage gardens that are meant for beauty and for human food.
Thus, I don't condemn hunters whether they are human or animal. Just because I couldn't kill a bunny and eat it doesn't mean it shouldn't be allowed!

The Swiss Cats said...

We're sorry you have to deal with this. Mum is a gardener too, and she loves all the critters who have four paws or less, but she never goes against our nature. Mother Nature seems often cruel for humans' eyes, but life goes like this. Depending the area where you live, the cutest critter can be a real scourge. We hope you'll be able to discuss it calmly and privately with JB. Purrs

Katnip Lounge said...

Cats don't judge; people do.

MeezerMews&FrecklesWoofs said...

Oh, dear. Sorry you got jumped on.

Blogs are supposed to be furendly, we thought.

And corrosive words are not furendly nor productive of good relations. Private emails would be better...

dezizworld said...

So Sowry yous got such a comment. While weez don't fink kitties ought to go outside (too many dangers) weez unnewstand uders don''t feel da same as we do. And altho' weez not fink kitties ought to be outside, da bottom line is dat we be hunters and rabbits be purrey and food. We fink nuffin' of buyin' da rabbit in a can so weez noot unnewstand why peeps wuld be upset wiff us catchin', killin' and eatin' one on our own. We also fink this reader is not knew to yous blooggy and shulda been purrpared to expect dat based on yous purrevious posties and da comments weez read here. Mommy noo longer gawdens fur a variety of reasons but one is dat da rabbits ate all hers purroduce afur she kuld get it. She dusn't have da munny to feed all da wildlife and wulda gladly had one of yous little hunters take care of dat purrawllem. She dusn't fink we awe dat good of hunters as weez never had da chance. And our skills wiff da flyin' mousy and bird toys awe sumwhat lackin'. MOL Anyways, weez sowry yous got jumped on and it was uncalled fur. It's yous bloggy yous shuld post what yous want. Readers can choose what they read or not. Have a gweat weekend.

Luv ya'

Dezi and Lexi

Max said...

Ok, this is gonna be unpopular, but I'm gonna say it anyway.

Yes, cats are hunters. If I got outside and was calm enough, I might try to grab something. But that's OUTSIDE. Where cats hunt.

That bunny was not outside, and it did not have to die. The truth is that instead of taking pictures, you could have saved the bunny. The truth is that even though cats are hunters, yours did not *need* to hunt, especially in the house. You feed them, and I presume you play with them, and if you play often enough you can satiate that need to feel like they've hunted.

But more than that...we didn't need to see pictures of its death. We don't ever need to see pictures of a kill. Animals die; animals get eaten, but it feels a bit mean to take pictures of them and put them online for entertainment.

My two cents.

I honestly hate those pictures. To me they are not entertainment or even info-sharing. They're just kind of disturbing.

Mark's Mews (Ayla, Iza, and Marley) said...

Fair enough.

I might not have phrased the post perfectly. Marley hunted and caught the bunny outside, thoroughly bit it around the neck many times and tossed it around enough so that it was likely to die anyway and THEN dragged it into the house. My opinion is that the bunny was already doomed. Iza grabbed it and took it back outside.

But also, I don't WANT an infestation of destructive little rabbits in my garden. Because my fence is set into the ground, they have to work to get inside it. They are therefore fair prey for the cats.

I AM sorry the pictures disturbed some readers, but I was PROUD of Marley for catching the little varmint...

Penelope TheCatFromHell said...

Mark, you warned that it might be gruesome. If I did not want to see it, I could have bypassed the post.
I know that your cats are allowed to be cats - including catching and dispatching their prey, I don't find this at all disturbing, but I know that others adhere to different beliefs.
The internet and blog posts allow immediate responses. And sometimes, people blurt out something they would not say--if they thought about it. I would chalk it up to that - dead and bloody bunny - Oh My God! How could he post that! I LOVE and rescue Bunnies! Type! type! type!
Love you and the cats Mark!
Nellie's Mommy

Pretinha said...

Mark lamento toda essa confusão, você esbarrou em uma questão difícil para nós amantes de animais.

Cleopawtra said...

As someone has already said, cats don't judge people do, people must be aware of what they say in their comments. It's not like you haven't posted things like this before. I'm sorry for the bunny, but well done kitty. You know that they won't starve if they some how get out and you can't get them back into the house.

Flynn said...

I'm rather late getting here! You did put a warning of what was to come and if people don't want to see it, then don't go any further. By nature a cat is a hunter and I believe it is good for a cat to act naturally. Flynn rarely catches rabbits now mostly because there aren't many around. This is probably because he and Eric kept the population down over the years. He is a very prolific mmouser though. People don't complain about that because they are not cute and cuddly. I would never condem a cat for doing what comes naturally, or you for being proud of his hunting skills.

Mark's Mews (Ayla, Iza, and Marley) said...

Flynn, may Bast give you mousies just often enough to keep it a challenge, an occasional surprise rabbit, mebbe a bird once in a great while, and all the treats and cuddles you want inside!

You said it Just Right.

Marley and TBT