Monday, May 25, 2009

Six flags for kitties

Last week we moved Patch and the puppies into an 8x8 shed in the back yard. Here’s a photo (left to right: Berry, Teddy, Meg and Patch).

This move means that we can use their former bedroom as a much-needed storage room again. It worked well as a dog bedroom because it has doors to the master bathroom and to the fenced-in back yard, but those days are over (unless we ever get another puppy - I can't imagine that at this point - we have a lifetime supply of dogs now). We had cleaned it only in a cursory fashion when it was a dog bedroom, mostly because Mr. P put up fencing in front of all the shelving to keep the dogs out of trouble and it was a major pain to maneuver around the fencing. So we mopped the floor, changed the dog bedding, and cleaned the dog crates, but that's it.On Thursday I started a major cleaning in that room. I only did half the room because I was able to remove the fencing from only 2 of the shelving units. It was disgusting. Not just dirt. I found mouse droppings, a dead mouse (in a sticky trap), and 3 live mice. I heaved the shelving around and threw out almost everything that had been stored in there....if a mouse walked across it, I don't want it unless it's spent a few hours in an autoclave. After two hours, I gave up. When Mr. P got home from work, he removed the rest of the fencing after listening to me rant along the lines of, "How could those mice survive with FIVE dogs in that room?"Clearly, the dogs have not been earning their keep. (What a surprise.)Yesterday I tackled the rest of the room. Found shredded puppy training pads (mouse bedding, I guess) and 2 more live mice. Found Mr. P. and said, "You need to move those shelving units so I can clean underneath them, but I'm not going back in there with those mice."As you know, I'm an animal lover, but I do not love rodents. I will not go out of my way to hurt them, but if they invade my home, they're history. They're dirty and disease-infested and I'm not paying the vet to give them shots and check-ups. I'm feminine but not a girly-girl - I don't leap on tables when I see a rodent - but I sure do cuss at them.So Mr. P. went out there, moved the shelving units away from the wall, and found a dozen baby mice. And being a very resourceful guy, he put our cat's litter box and water bowl in the room. He grabbed the cat, Smoky, heaved him into the room, shut the door, and reported all this to me just as I walked out the door to go to physical therapy (for the bursitis in my hips).When I got home from PT, I asked him, "So how's it going with Smoky and the mice?"He gave me a broad smile and said, "It's Six Flags for kitties!" It seems that Smoky had been highly entertained by the mice. Mr. P. heard lots of loud noises - crashes and bangs - in the storage room. Finally curiosity overcame him and he opened the outside door to the storage room.

"Want to come outside?" he said.

Smoky, who usually hates being confined, looked out, said, "Raar," and turned his attention back to the mouse problem. So Mr. P. said, "Munch a bunch!" and shut the door again.

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