Cats Versus Goldfish

When I got home from work last night I said hello to Miss 15, and she seemed a little down – I couldn’t quite put my finger on what might be wrong, so while making a coffee, asked her if anything was up. It transpired she had cleaned the fish tank out (which is an onerous task that we all avoid like the plague), and while cleaning it out had shut the fish in a room at the other end of the house.

This is where I need to explain that our house is old, and nothing quite works perfectly – you know, like doors shutting properly. Quite apart from the doors I have had to break down over the years (another story for another day), it just so happened that Miss 15 shut the goldfish in a room where the door opens if you push on it – regardless of the latch having engaged. Unfortunately for the fish, the cats had figured this out too.

I think it’s fair to say that anybody who owns a cat knows that at heart they are sadistic, evil, killing machines. They pretend to be friends when they want food, or when they want somewhere warm to sit. Beyond that, you may as well be dead to them. They kill other animals not because they are hungry – more because seeing anything smaller than themselves wriggling around switches their entire brain into “MUST KILL AND MANGLE” mode – a bit like the sharks in Finding Nemo when they smell blood.

So anyway – while Miss 15 went off to do whatever it is that Miss 15’s do around the house, the cats silently broke into the room with the closed door, and set about trying to remove the goldfish from the bowl of water. By the time their “fun” was discovered, two of the fish had shredded tails, and had lost impressive numbers of scales. I guess we should count ourselves lucky that our cats are so crap at catching fish – it could have been a LOT worse, judging by the headless mice we are presented with from time to time.

I said all the things parents are supposed to say in these situations – that accidents happen, it wasn’t anybody’s fault, that’s just what cats do, it’s nature, and all that sort of rubbish. I really wanted to go and grab each cat by the scruff of it’s neck and bash it’s head repeatedly against the glass of the fish tank while shouting “LOOK! LOOK WHAT YOU DID. LOOK YOU LITTLE SHIT!”.

The fish are still swimming around this morning. They are eating. They are even swimming up the right way. I noticed last night that one of them was taking advantage of the newly clean fish tank to do perhaps the biggest dump ever done by a goldfish – I’m wondering if you can chalk that up to some kind of anarchic Goldfish bravado ?

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