Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Feline intellect

Had kind of an interesting moment on Sunday night. Bonnie was sleeping in the chair next to me and I just casually reached over to pat her. Mistake. She must have been having a bad dream or something because she woke with a start and drove her claws into the middle finger of my left hand, bracketing me on both sides of the nail. Not surprisingly, I yelled out with pain and surprise. But what surprised me almost as much was that she didn't take off like a shot (as I think I would if I'd just injured someone twenty times my size, inadvertently or not). She just turned to me and blinked at me, as if to try to let me know she didn't mean it. Cats wink and blink at one another, and us, to communicate their peaceful intentions and feelings of affection. I suppose it was a form of apology.

Equally surprising was that Max showed up out of nowhere, and half climbed onto me, leaning on my knee in concern. He didn't take off either. Just the opposite... he showed up and seemed to be exhibiting some sort of empathy, mingled with curiosity.

It really hurt for a couple of minutes, and I cradled my bleeding finger and waited for the pain to subside. Bonnie either felt guilty, or maybe offended by the display, and for a few minutes, she turned away and resolutely refused to look at me. She did so until I finally stood up. Then everything was back to normal, as least as far as she was concerned.

All told, it was an interesting four or five minutes... a look into the workings of different minds that I hadn't anticipated or quite credited before.

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