Saturday, July 18, 2009

Manx Cats

This is Piscín, one of my two Manx cats. He found me. He was a runaway from a house were His Highness was not appreciated. To add insult, the previous owner had named him, a Manx, Pancho. Now I tell you, that is not a proper name for a Manx. Ideally the name should be in Gaelic of course. The breed comes from the Isle of Man, a island between Ireland and northern England, and one of the three Gaelic homelands. I've been there, lovely place. They rule themselves, are part of the Crown, but not part of the UK, so an odd status, like the Channel Island. It is a magical place, full of beautiful glens, moors, mountains, and lovely people, and Manx Cats.

Manx cats are odd fellows, their behaviour almost dog like. The better ones will fetch things for you, will carry things around in their mouth, etc., they love to go on walks with their owners, especially in the woods. The are keen vermin catches, un-matched. Mine take a steady toll on the vole and mouse population around my house. The other day Piscín killed a bona fide rat. Not a cotton rat, but a full blown nasty bugger of a rat. He killed it with one vicious bite to the back of its neck... clean, neat, professional.

Piscín is also adept at killing snakes. This is a vendetta, when he was younger he was bitten by a cotton mouth moccasin. His wee paw blew up to the size of a good summer sausage, he came close to death, but survived. Since that experience he presents me with four or five very dead poisonous snakes each year. What a cat.