February 26th 2013 8:28 am
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Picture this if you will: me, the Samhain, in the snow in front of the porch, face to face with this strange white-striped black cat with a pointy nose; the Mama some several feet away trying to be calm, telling me to come to her PLEASE. Can you guess who this invader is? You got it – a skunk!
It happened this way.
This morning as the pawrents are enjoying a quiet breakfast, they both look up as they see two cats zoom by the window on the little wood wall that serves as a windbreak for the feral feeding station on the north porch. The Mama sees them stop and look back at something, so she goes to investigate. She knew this day would come…a skunk has come to check out the feral food.
Socks and SevenPointOne are curious about it; obviously they have never had a Close Encounter because they are crowding it into the corner. Now the Papa comes to see what’s going on. Pretty soon it’s a circus. The Mama is giggling about it, but not really too concerned. No one is being really threatening and the little guy isn’t scared; he just wants to find out where that lovely food scent is coming from, but these two big cat dudes are in the way.
The Papa moves to intercept Socks, Seven and Ricki who has decided to come be in the way, too. The Mama meanwhile has a fresh plate of food which she is trying to entice it to follow (!!! – OK, maybe she’s a little fool-hardy…) He’s not following, so she moves the plate and all the other remnants of feral food down the steps a little ways from the porch, hoping that he will eventually work his way over there.
At this point, I break out of the house! Oh, yeah. The Papa pursues me, trying to keep me away from the skunk; catches me brings me back in. Catches the Socks and brings HIM in. Shoos the others away. The Mama gets one of her infamous water spray bottles and adds vinegar to it and proceeds to shoot at him from around the door, hoping he doesn’t start to feel threatened, but will simply move to get away from the vinegar. It doesn’t work at first, but finally it does and the skunk goes back over the windbreak and is headed away from the house. Whew!
Except just then, when the Papa is distracted, I break free again. This time I am after that little stripey guy! I actually stand in front of his retreat with my hackles raised, like an idiot! The Mama is no longer giggling; she is seriously worried. Maybe my instinct finally kicked in, or maybe her worry got through to me, but I backed off and came to her then and, thankfully, we watched as that little stripey-butt disappeared around the corner and away from the house. She says I have no idea how close I came…
Oh my Samhain! You've got to be careful with those stripey-butts! At least that's what I've been told. Personally, I've never had the experience of meeting one. It sounds like that one wasn't too feisty maybe- but he could'a been! I'm glad it turned out ok for you. Lucky you, now you just get the bragg'in rites of having met one.
Next time wear your cape--that will show 'em! MOL!
We have had them in our yard, but we have never gotten close to one. Glad your story has a happy ending. They often say that skunks will not spray cats as often as dogs, maybe because dogs are more threatening. Be careful....
whew that was a furry close encounter but I bet it was kinda interesting to check out that little guy I hear he like sexy tux kitty MOL that was Zachary's comment my diary when I wrote about what we thought was a skunk in our patio.
so glad you kitties and your pawrents were not sprayed dude really stay inside!!
Glad you did not get sprayed!
Yeah, boy howdy - were we all glad no one got sprayed!!! And yes, Calie - they ARE rather handsome-looking. The Mama went looking through her books and then through the internet to try to identify what kind of skunk it was 'cause it seemed like it had more white on it. There is a hooded skunk with more white but they aren't supposed to be this far north, so maybe it was just a striped skunk but with a bigger white stripe.
I should add, in case anyone else gets in this situation and isn't as lucky, a chemist developed a deskunking formula that is probably the most reliable:
1 quart of 3% hydrogen peroxide (from drug store)
1/4 cup of baking soda (sodium bicarbonate)
and a teaspoon of liquid detergent.
Rinse with water after, and repeat if necessary. I think that hydrogen peroxide is a food-grade solution - a lower percentage that the hydrogen peroxide you buy for washing cuts and stuff.
Glad the skunk didn't tag you, Samhain! I've never seen one, but once in a while we get a whiff of skunk scent from the woods. Hope your skunk stays away from the ferals' food from now on.
Well, truth to tell, the little fellow came back that night and the next. The first night the pawrents were already in bed and they smelled him but heard no cry from cats, so figured no one got sprayed - which they didn't. The second night they saw him a ways off the porch digging in the snow for some food that had been dropped there. No one bothered him and he didn't bother them. Hopefully if he returns, this non-interference policy will continue. The Papa just now this instant said: "There's a raccoon out there now..." (sigh) Well, better than a skunk, I guess.
Hi Samhain O'Shaunessey!
Wow that is a great story! Good job about showing that stripy who the boss is around there.
Yep - I tol' him I was gonna whop up on him if he showed his pointy little nose around here any more!
[Mama Alex here: I've been good about picking up the food before dark now, even though I feel bad about taking food away if I'm not sure everyone's eaten. Mostly I hang out by the door watching to see who's there.]