Warning: Insensitive material ahead.
The cat caught another robin last night. I was sitting at my computer when I heard a panicked "squeek, squeek, chirp" sound. I found the bird and the cat facing off near the bathroom. (As it turned out, the cat was in the bedroom with the bird when the bird got away. Feathers everywhere.)
The rule is: the cat can't bring his catches into the house. While the two were stalemated (the bird kept pecking off the cat), I found a bowl and placed that over the bird, who let me do that. The thing had no fear of me (or perhaps, had no fear left and nothing to lose.) The cat was very curious about this clear bowl over the cat. He could still see and smell the bird, but how to get around this sudden obsticle? Meanwhile, I needed to find something to slide under the bird and found a piece of cardboard. The cat, well aware that I had his bird, followed me with great interest. I deposed the bird on the front stoop, the cat set next to it, and I proceeded to close the screen door, lest the cat try that stunt again. I left the bird to its feline fate.
Later on, the cat and bird disappeared.
Later on, the cat whined piteously. I went outside, and the little fellow was all distressed and looking about. He had gone for a walk and lost his birdie. Mr. Bird had enough sense to get out of there. After some looking, we found his birdie in the grass, and he proceeded to play with it again.
Here's how he played with the birdie. He would swat at it and the birdie would get annoyed. Eventually, he swatted it well enough that the birdie got scared and ran away, which is what the cat wanted. He then rand and pounced the birdie. The birdie then fought back. The cat backed away a little. Eventually, he laid down near the birdie, the birdie calmed down, and detant was reached. They both quieted down. When the cat got bored with this, he started swatting the bird, and the cycle started again.
I would call my cat cold, but that wasn't it. Quite honestly, he was enjoying himself too much to be cold. He had so much fun with his new toy. I don't think that he actually meant to hurt it. I think that he just wanted to play with it, and otherwise be friends, crazy as that seems. What I could not tell was whether he thought of the bird as a toy, or as a living thing. I'm not sure that he understands living and dead at all.
I let him do all this. I'm a good cat daddy. He needs to learn about birds. He really needs to learn how to kill them. I haven't figured out how to do show that yet. And I have completely no idea how to show him how to eat one of the damned things.
I went looking for traces of the bird this morning, but could find nothing except a few feathers. If I had found a feather explosion, that would have been good, as the cat would have eaten the birdie. As it stands, I have no good clue about the fate of the bird. I suspect that it hobbled off to hide somewhere, and will eventually die as it can't fly.