Tuesday, May 15, 2007

His Fluffiness Foiled

Sometimes Ralph is just too smart for his own good. Like today.

A little bit of setup, here -- lined along one wall of the carport is a row of three beat-up metal garbage cans and two nice plastic garbage cans. Or maybe it's two metal and three plastic. Whatever. Anyway, I store Ralph's big bag of cat chow in one of the plastic cans so neighboring cats and visiting raccoons can't get into it. When it's feeding time, I just whup off the lid, scoop out the designated portion and plunk the lid back down.

No problem.

Until today. Normally I get downstairs a lot earlier to put out his feed but, with one thing and another, didn't meet up with His Fluffiness until after six this evening. That's when I knew I wouldn't have to worry about him starving if I ever forgot to trot downstairs and fill the food dish. Ol' Ralph is quite capable of helping himself if his staff is behaving in an unsatisfactory manner.

The garbage can was laying on its side, lid flung free. The feed sack was pulled completely out of the can. Two ragged holes had been chewed in the bottom, although the top was open and accessible. Apparently he was making sure he got every last bit.

Actually, although the sack was getting low, there was still quite a lot there for one cat to handle, even a cat nicknamed Greedy Guts. Maybe he threw a party and shared with fellow frivolous felines. Maybe they were all down there, gettin' it on, gettin' down, and I missed the whole thing.

Whatever happened, Ralph was letting me know he was ready for another serving and kept pacing back and forth between me and his dish, making his demands in firm declarative sentences. I tipped the garbage can back in place and checked the feed bag.

Empty. Emptier than a pan after a pie-eating contest. Emptier than a hatched egg shell. Emptier than a politician's promise.

"Well, Ralph, you've messed yourself up tonight, ol' boy."

"Mwrrowrrr?" he asked, honestly perplexed.

"You ate your dinner stash and the store is closed so I can't get you any more until tomorrow."

"Mwrrrrorrr!!!" He was shocked. Stunned. Gobsmacked.

"I know," I sympathized. "Why don't we just consider the next 14 or so hours as an unannounced health fast?" He leaped into my lap for a cuddle, causing me to wince and mutter, "It really wouldn't hurt you, old boy." Considering the lounging weight of the beast, I'd say there's no immediate danger of Ralph fading away.

No, I'm not going to fix him any people food to tide him over. About the only people food he'll condescend to eat is chicken ... and then, only if I cut it up tiny for him. And I don't happen to have any chicken at the moment. Don't worry. He'll be fine. He still has his Mighty Hunter badge, I think. He can flash it amongst the local mouse population. Shake 'em up a bit.


Wendy said...

Looking at Ralph, and even taking all the fluff into account, I agree that he's certainly not going to fade away anytime soon.

With the trick he pulled today, are you quite sure he's not part dog?

Dee said...

You caught that! I've always maintained, Wendy, that Ralph is a dog trapped in a cat's body. I think it's a karmic thing. He probably was mean to cats in a past life. (smile)

John Bailey said...

I read this story to Dolly. She was horrified on all kinds of levels but settled down reasonably well when I reminded her that we have 24-hour supermarkets round here. :-)

Anonymous said...

I'm hoping that he had company in the eating of all that food. Bloat is a severe consequence of eating too much kibble and can actually kill a cat or dog. Keep an eye on him, ok? He's part squirrel, too, I think!

bb said...

Well on Ralph's behalf I'm betting he had nothing to do with it. I have seen racoons open garbage cans. Ralph would of been smart enough to walk in the open top and as a cat tidy enough not to drag the entire bag out. :-)

Dee said...

Ah, John. I'm glad Dolly was reassured. But maybe she was upset because she missed the party? (smile)

Anon, I worried a bit about bloat, too, but he showed no sign of discomfort, either from being too full or too empty. Could be, besides having help, there wasn't as much food left in the sack as I'd thought.

Bonnie, I'd agree Ralph had help with the raid but I'm inclined to think it was neighborhood cats, rather than the wild bandidos. He wouldn't have gone near the crime scene had it been the latter. As for tidy cat behavior, didn't we establish Ralph is really a dog?

Mage said...

Poor old guy........and are you sure he is the bad guy?