Guard Cat

Sep 7, 2013

Tabby Prowl
Credit Derek Bridges

Guard dog?  Not in this home - there's a guard cat on duty, defending her human and foiling a would-be burglar!


Last Saturday evening, Rose Taylor of Silverton, Oregon, settled down for a good night’s sleep. By her side was her seven-pound tabby cat, Addy. The cat’s full name is Addy Tudy, because she has a bit of an attitude. However, that night all was peaceful until about 3:30 Sunday morning when Rose was awakened by her cat growling. She saw a shadow and noticed the screen moving. When Addy knew her owner was awake, she stood up, jumped out of bed and ran across the floor and out of the room. Rose also scrambled out of bed, yelling, turning on the lights and grabbed the phone to call 9-1-1. All that noise and commotion succeeded in scaring the man who was trying to break in. By the time Rose looked out her window, she could see the burglar already on the other side of the street.

Dogs are known for their keen sense of hearing, but a cat’s ability to hear - especially high-pitched sounds - far exceeds that of the dog. The cat’s ears can pick up the slightest sound, the smallest rustle of leaves or snap of twig, the tiniest squeak. A cat can hear sounds up to 100,000 cycles per second - which (not so coincidentally) is about the same pitch as the squeak of a mouse. That’s about three times better than the dog, and about five times better than humans. They can hear even the ultrasonic sounds that precede an earthquake. So it’s no wonder your cat comes running from almost anywhere at the sound of the can opener, or that it can wake from a sound sleep to warn its owner about a would-be burglar moving the screen.

Sometimes I’m asked if it’s a good idea to let your pet sleep in the bed with you. For Rose Taylor of Silverton, Oregon, it seems to have been a good choice. There have been several recent break-ins in the neighborhood, so Addy’s attitude, along with her devotion to her owner, protected them both. The neighbors are probably wishing they had their own “guard cat”.

As for Rose, well, she’s getting a new lock for her door – and some tuna as a special treat for her best friend.  She adopted a cat, and got a hero in the bargain – in my book, that’s a pretty good deal, when you’re speaking of pets.