Wednesday, November 17, 2010

The double-dog dare

There's a three-toed cat next door who answers to the name of Millie. She came with the new neighbors who moved in not too long ago. Her siblings include two look-a-like cats, one junkyard dog on a chain (a pit boxer mix I think), a little boy - barely walking and a baby on the way. Prior to their moving in next door to us, the cats lived in an apartment and now they live outside 24 hours a day. Their owners leave food out for them, as far as I can tell but they've quickly learned (Millie in particular) to get their loving from other sources. She and the other two cats have developed a thing for Stella. Whenever we go outside, they parade over to our yard and start rubbing up against her until she begins to vibrate. Occasionally, she's overwhelmed by it but mostly she just enjoys the attention and goes about her business with them in tow. Here's a sneak peek.

A couple of nights ago, I headed out the door with Stella and as we exited the house, Millie ran in the door. She wasn't around when we returned and I actually forgot she was in the house for awhile. Later on, when I went looking for her, I found her, sound asleep - in Stella's bed. Stella walked into the room, sat down in front of the bed and put on her dejected face. I half-heartedly told her get in bed with the cat. She wasn't enthusiastic about such a request despite my double-dog dare and a short lecture about the potential of added warmth and companionship. She finally did get in it but chose to sit instead of lie down. I could see the whites of her eyes the entire time so it wasn't very long before I let her off the hook. She sprang out of the bed like one of those Calaveras County frogs and barked at the three-toed cat.

Thoughts on the origin of the "double-dog dare" from Michael Quinion.