For the record, I did not witness any part of the actual event. I only became aware of Zoey’s miraculous escape from doom when Michael busted into my office/writing room around 7:30 yesterday evening with the cat tucked under one arm.
“You need to check Zoey for snakebite. I think she might have gotten bitten in the face.”
Mike was too rattled (heh, unintended pun there) to provide a calm account of the incident that had led us to this panic session. I heard him say the word “copperhead” which instantly caused my own blood pressure to shoot out my ears and perceive all other words out of his mouth as a garbled mess that sounded like, “copperhead, copperhead, copperhead, Zoey’s face!”
My world tilted wildly. Copperheads and my Zoey Kitteh do not operate in the same universe. Zoey Kitteh is my BABY. She is my spoiled, beloved, ridiculously-affectionate and chronically-overweight HOUSE CAT. She is not Rikki Tikki Tavi!
Shaking and beyond panic, I checked over every inch of her fuzzy body at least ten times, nose to tail, then back again. Zoey being Zoey – always full of calm, sweet-natured Zoeyness – purred loudly and generally let me do as I wished with only a minimum show of squirmy protest. No signs of snake bite. No injuries or sore places whatsoever. No sticky venom spray on her fur.
Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU, oh great heavenly protector of overly curious cats!!!
Hours later, I was able to get the full story from Mike (who is still quite traumatized by the incident as he loves wild creatures of all types, but rather especially loves reptiles, and yet was forced to choose the safety of the domestic household pets over a remarkably non-aggressive venomous snake).
Here is what happened….
Although Zoey is supposed to be an indoor-only house cat, sometimes she outsmarts us and escapes. She doesn’t go far. We don’t live near a road. And we can always get her back by calling &/or shaking her food bag. So we’ve gotten very careless about letting her take the occasional nature walk. That is going to have to change.
Last night, Mike was cleaning and preparing our camping supplies for a much-anticipated trip to Cooper’s Creek. While he was going in and out of the house, Zoey slipped out for a late afternoon stroll around the property. I don’t think he even noticed she had gotten out. By chance, Mike decided to search the small barn behind our house for some piece of something he thought might be useful…as he passed near the huge woodpile that is out by the barn he heard a sudden, sharp rattle-rustle of leaves that he recognized instantly.
It was a snake’s warning to back off. But where was the snake and who was it warning?
When Mike looked over at the woodpile, there was Zoey face-to-face with a freaking Southern Copperhead snake. For her part, Zoey appeared absolutely calm and mildly curious. The snake was reared up and ready for combat, clearly warning her to BACK OFF, but it didn’t ever strike. Bless its cold snakey heart!
Now you KNOW I am no lover of venomous snakes, especially if you remember reading about this incident, but I will admit this copperhead was being remarkably controlled and non-agDisplay Comments Add a Comment