Turtle Returns

So after this latest escapade, we were back to the drawing board, vis-a-vis the jacket-leash idea.  My thinking is, no sense us trying to push the envelope to be courageous and explore calmly, when Bugs has his butt in a fluff about the jacket from the git-go.

The plan is to retreat inside and work both ends of the leash, to keep things as calm as possible.

So I realize — now I’ve chunked things this way back down — I was too ready to laugh.  Working with Bugs as slowly and attentively as I can each day, trying to acclimatize him by degrees, I see how really bothered he is about the jacket.

A week later, he’s still salamandering — though each day less so.  Still, after about five minutes tops, he just parks himself into a corner with his nose pressed up against something.  It seems reasonable to assume he’s shutting down.  Off goes the jacket for another day.

Except you can just never tell what the next day’s going to bring.  This morning we  finished our slow-and-easy jacket practice — and Bugs began caterwauling again.  I dragged myself away from the computer to see this guy, back again or another family member who looks just like the other guy:

So I first spotted him in the weeds.  I thought what could be the harm in bringing Bugs out  for a meet-and-greet?  Mr. Turtle would know what to do, to protect himself . . . . So I popped Bugs back into the jacket and carried him out.

As I lowered Bugs down, though, he did that jump-straight-in-the-air thing.  Ah.  That was the harm. I’d forgotten about that.

Fortunately he leaped straight into my chest, so all I had to do was wrap my arms around him.  And when I did that, I noticed his heart was pretty much trying to get out of his chest.  So — back inside.

Then I brought Mr. Turtle up to the door.

Here is Mr. Turtle’s response:

Did you know this kind of turtle has a hinge on their chest, so they can do this?  Did you know when they do this, there’s a little “whoof” of air?  Something so cartoon-like about this sound-effect.  Like they’re gasping.

I really wanted him to come out.  I waited a long time, camera in hand.

This was all the further he’d come out:

Can’t say I blame him.  What with Bugs freaking out behind him.  So I put Mr. Turtle back in the weeds, where Bugs couldn’t see him.

But Bugs was still caterwauling.  So I resorted to the nip.

Bugs decides whether he’ll lower himself to the nip freak-out.

Can’t help himself.  Notice the back-leg blur.

The horror!

Going down — but two hours later, still not out.

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About nadbugs

Anita loves cats. This must be because she, too, has had nine lives. She’s been dancing since she could walk, she was a commercial artist and advertising producer, she earned a third-degree black belt in Aikido, she is a drummer with the Afrique Aya Dance Company, she is an attorney, and she’s a meditator and a devoted student of Nonviolent Communication. She also spent one lifetime sidelined with a devastating back injury in 1992. Since then – FELDENKRAIS METHOD® to the rescue. The FELDENKRAIS METHOD is all about dreaming concretely – thinking intelligently and independently by way of a gracious and kind physicality. The work affords all who study it a process by which to reach, with movement, into the mind and the heart, to make nine lives into one whole being.
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18 Responses to Turtle Returns

  1. Marcy Benham says:

    Why not bring Mr. Turtle in to meet Bugs? Uma is facinated by anything that comes into the house from outside. My shoes, the paper, plants…all get a good sniffing over, almost like one of my dogs. If he isn’t ready to go out, maybe out can come in to say hello!?!

    • nadbugs says:

      Call me crazy, but I didn’t want to disturb Mr. Turtle any more than strictly necessary — I love turtles. On the other hand, I’m sure he was disturbed bigtime despite my scruples!

      • Oldcat says:

        When I was a kid, and we caught turtles and brought them home the cats were very wary of them, I’m not sure why. Of course, in Ohio there are alligator snappers that get about three feet across and could kill them, but these cats almost certainly hadn’t seen any.

        Snakes, on the other hand, were instant attack to kill mode for them all.

      • Oldcat says:

        Oh and not all turtles have the hinge and can go all in like the box turtles can, Some just have to turn the head and legs sideways and block with the thick skin and the shell only closes partially.

        Predator turtles like the snapper don’t have a bottom shell to tuck between, but they don’t hide from a lot.

        • nadbugs says:

          Isn’t this just the most fascinating thing. I know what you mean about predatory turtles. A while back one time I saw one of those three-feet guys in the road, the kind with the vice-grip beak — I pushed him to the side of the road. With a small tree-trunk. Which he broke.

  2. We think Bugs is becoming unsure about the outdoors! After all, the nip and fudz and toys and chewable Bean are all in the INside…

    Ah, nip…we always succumb to it’s siren call, too. Eventually.

    • nadbugs says:

      Well — maybe so, Lounger, about outside — but earlier this morning, for the first time since the Great Escape of Nov. ’10, he shouldered past me at the door and into the great outdoors, sans jacket and sans me. This time I lured him back in with kitty crack kibble. I worry about next time. Gak. I worry about everything. Never a dull moment.

  3. Anne D says:

    About a week and a half ago, a blessed cool front was on the way, and the rain was pouring down. I was taking care of my daughter’s 13 year old dog for the Labor Day holiday. I had bought the cutest doggie raincoat for such an occasion. i put it on Dolly, leashed her and led her out into the downpour, thinking how grateful she would be for the rain protection. Her response was to collapse her already short legs and refuse to move, eliminate or anything. The raincoat had to come off. If you bring Mr. Turtle in, put some paper under him. I rescued one from a busy street, took him to the nearby canal and he peed on me.

  4. nadbugs says:

    How totally rude. Honestly. You get peed on for your efforts (that’s about the last thing I thought you were going to say) — or Dolly becomes paralyzed. No wonder people turn to drink.

  5. Jaime says:

    Those pictures are hysterical! He certainly is a photogenic chap!

  6. Wazeau says:

    “Bugs has his butt in a fluff” Love it. And the photos, especially the one with his leg up on the Ess like an easy going gentlemen watching television with his arm resting on the edge of the couch.

    • nadbugs says:

      I am amazed at how totally you and I match in our response to that picture. I love the drama of “the horror” one — but this one, to me, is even funnier. For the exact reason you mention. Hi-4!

  7. lifewith4cats says:

    Its funny that bugs would be so freaked out by a turtle. I wonder who was more scared the kitty or the turtle. In there heads was playing high trama music. DUN DUN DUN DAH, SCREE SCREE. Near crisis averted… life and death. :)

  8. OK Cats says:

    I think everyone else has beat me to my comment, but I do find a bit of humor in the cat who seems destined to always been a teesy bit feral was terrified of a turtle. As for the dashing outside, it’s just something you live with. Both of my boys were door-dashers, and now, even though I have cats who wouldn’t dream of running outside, I still shut any door to the outside as fast as humanly possible. Old habits die hard.

  9. OK Cats says:

    *teensy bit feral – I should learn to check spelling before pressing ‘Post’.

  10. nadbugs says:

    That is so funny, the way you put it! Swaggering little tough-guy wanting to play rough with Mom — and then jumping out of his skin at Mr. Turtle. He is such a little character. Just full of quirks and personality. I constantly try to wipe my mind clean of preconceptions. This morning’s jacket-practice was a prime example. Wish I could post the pics I take with my eye — but I was too busy living in the moment to think of my camera. So sweet. Well — I guess we’re all pretty funny. Training ourselves to rush through the door for the rest of our lives.

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