Missy the Siamese Wolverine – RIP


Someone killed our Missy the Siamese Wolverine yesterday (June 1).

She didn’t come home to eat and nap in the early afternoon. My gut was telling me to find her. I last saw her walking past our storage shed in the back yard at about 10am.

I started looking for her. We had put a Loc8tor tracking tag on her collar, so I can locate her with a credit card sized handset from 300-400 feet. I walked for an hour scanning the woods to the north of our property with no hits. I saw two wild turkeys but no Missy.

At about 6pm Ann and I scanned neighborhoods nearby from the car with no success. Then I walked into the thick woods (Georgia jungle) behind our home and headed east, down the creek. About a half mile away, I was about to turn back when I got a faint signal on the tracker. I slowly honed in to a very rough area on the side of a hill, covered with fallen trees and underbrush. My tracker was saying she’s right in front on me but I saw nothing.

I assumed that the tracking tag or her collar had fallen off so that’s what I was looking for. I was brushing away leaves under my feet when I saw a patch of fur. Missy had been buried under some leaves in a small depression. I called Ann with the awful news and started home, with her lifeless body cradled in my arm. I assumed Missy had been killed by a coyote and covered up.

On the way home I called Ann and asked her to contact our neighbor Chris to help me determine cause of death. He met me in the woods behind our house and walked with me to the driveway. I put Missy down and Chris started examining her. He immediately found a small gunshot wound on the side of her head and the exit wound on the other side. We were stunned.

We decided to report the shooting to the sheriff’s department. They sent out an officer who was polite, compassionate, and professional. He took all the pertinent information and went to a neighborhood near the place where I found Missy to canvass people. Chris and I drove there and talked to several people. Nothing definitive was uncovered.

I believe that we may have a serial pet killer who is an expert shot in our area. After he kills the pet, he goes to great trouble to transport the body deep in the woods to hide it. He never thought that someone would have a tracking tag on a pet that he hid and would be able find it.

Missy had one clue on her body that may help us find the killer.

Many pets, especially cats, have disappeared from our neighborhood in the last few years. The usual suspects were coyotes, which is why I bought the tracking device – to get Missy in before dark. Now we know that someone is shooting pets and hiding them. How many of the missing pets were actually due to coyotes?

The Siamese Wolverine was a bold, strong, stunningly beautiful, energetic cat. Not long ago I saw her pull a big black snake out of a briar patch. Last week she treed a raccoon in our back yard, tackled it when it came down, and chased into the woods. Also, she was bitten by a copperhead on the chin last week and was sick for about 8 hours. She had a charismatic presence that caught everyone’s attention when she made an appearance. Her death is such a waste as well as an act of undeniable cruelty.

On the morning before her death, Missy was sleeping at Ann’s feet on our bed. When Ann got up at dawn to go to the garden, Missy moved to my left side on the edge of the bed and smuggled up against my chest. As I stroked her wonderful coat, I could feel her deep purr. It was a peaceful way to begin the day, a day that I’ll never forget.

We are devastated. We hope for justice.

Our Cat Missy Is A Rascal


Yesterday was a beautiful day here – 65 degrees
and sunny here.

I was out by the garden making a video for my
storm-proof vegetable garden trellis book when our Missy cat walked up with a
small brown snake on her mouth. She was very proud of her catch.

It seemed very strange to me that a snake was out in
February; it must have been in a sunny spot when Missy caught it.

When I walked up, Missy dropped the snake near the
little pond on the west side of the garden. It appeared unhurt. I picked Missy
up and took her to the driveway to give the snake some time to get away.

When I put Missy down, she headed straight back to
where the snake had been dropped.

A few minutes later she came into the garage soaking
wet. She must have chased the snake into the pond with a little too much

Ironically, about 3 hours earlier I put an electronic
tracking device on her collar. (Sometimes she doesn’t come in at dark, when the
danger from coyotes becomes significant.)

This electronic tracker is not recommended for dogs
because it can be damaged by submersion in water. I told Ann that “we don’t have to
worry about Missy shorting out the tracking device because she never gets very

Missy’s Mischief: Stuff Happens

I was in my office at 7:45am this morning when Missy, our Siamese/Himalayan cat, looked in the window. She seemed to want me to come downstairs and let her in. I went down to the deck and she came over to jump off the roof. Due to the weekly monsoon, everything was wet and slippery.
Missy was very concerned about jumping down onto the grill, the usual path, which has a plastic cover that was wet. She had some problems getting her footing on the gutter. When she jumped, the landed on the backside of the grill, slipped, and went over the edge of the deck, about a 15 foot drop.
She landed on her feet, but when we got her in, she was shaken and had a chunk of fur missing from her forehead. We are watching her closely.
Our cats keep life interesting. Subtract one from her nine lives.
Here's Missy before her fall:

Missys Face

Here is Missy after her fall:

Missys Face

She might not be as pretty as she was if she has a scar. But she must be feeling OK because she's back to bullying the other cats.

PS: Missy was back on the roof three days later. The roof wasn't wet, so I hope she learned not to go on the roof after a rain.

Kevin Richardson: Master Animal Behaviouralist, Loved by Lions

Kevin Richardson and Lioness


Kevin Richardson, zoologist and animal behaviouralist, raises and trains some of the most dangerous animals known to man. To do this he does not use the common methods of breaking the animal's spirit with sticks and chains, instead he uses love, understanding and trust.

With this unusual method of training he has developed some exceptionally personal bonds with his students. He sleeps with lions, cuddles newborn hyenas, swims with lionesses. Kevin can confidently look into their eyes, crouch to the their level and even lie down with them – all taboos in the normal world of wild animal handling – yet he has never been mauled or attacked. Some call him crazy; others shake their heads at his unique method of interacting with the animals. And Kevin's secret – get to know the particular personality of each animal, what makes them angry, happy, upset, irritated – just like a mother with a child.

April 10: Scooter’s Birthday

On April 10, 1982, a pretty Siamese cat gave birth to a litter of kittens. The runt of the litter was named Scooter. The owners of the cats gave Scooter to Ann as a gift.

I met Scooter on my first date with Ann in 1991. I was not a cat person, but it didn't take long for Scooter to change my attitude about cats.

Scooter left his physical body soon after his 23rd birthday in 2005. His magnificent spirit lives in my memory. Ann still cries about losing him. He brought us much joy and some tears.

Our three young cats have assumed some of his traits. Sweetie is a great lap cat; in his later years, Scooter stayed in my lap for hours when the weather was cool while I worked at my computer. Blue, a runt herself, loves to play and is very smart, just like Scooter. Missy is a fierce warrior and fears no cat; Scooter loved fighting (and the local vets loved patching him back together).

Here's a picture of Scooter. If you would like to read about his life, click on this link:



Caught with Her Pants Down

Missywanted posterYesterday Ann saw Missy in the sink of our half bath acting suspiciously. After Missy jumped out of the sink, Ann investigated. Missy has peed in the sink!

Today Missy jumped up on the counter in my bathroom and got in the sink. Ann was watching her — she called me to come see. Missy was peeing my my sink!

We have rarely ever seen her use the litter boxes. We thought she was just shy. But shy is not really her nature — she’s a big, strong, rough bully with the other cats. Apparently she has discovered a way to use the bathroom for private matters.


Missy as a young cat