He’s Denis the Menace. He’s a cat burglar of the real kind. He’s a knicker nicker. He’s a penny pincher. He’s a black and white cat. And his name is Denis. In fact he is a very nice looking bicolor cat with an interesting pattern on his face. He looks as innocent as the day he was born. And the truth is, he is innocent. He is just doing what he has to do as one of the world’s top predator.
The problem is that he gets mixed up between prey and pants. I almost forgot Denis lives in England, UK. I don’t think it is important because there are filching felines everywhere and anywhere but they are quite rare.
And, of course, he doesn’t have to kill anything to exercise his natural drives to hunt. He just pops next door and lifts someone’s thong! That’s a blessing. Phew..
Denis’s behavior is a bit embarrassing for Denis’s human companion, Mrs Newman. In a way this nice, fun cat story raises some serious questions. Denis is a cat that wants to express his desire to hunt. That seems to be the reason why he steals items belonging to neighbours. Rather than attacking prey and bringing it home as a way of teaching his offspring to hunt he prefers to take an inanimate item of some sort and bring that home to his human companion. This is a bit odd because he goes outside and therefore should be able to express his desire to hunt in a more natural way. Also it is usually the female cat who brings prey back to the den as a way of beginning the process of teaching cubs to hunt. Denis is a bit mixed up.
It seems that the domestic cat is becoming more and more removed from nature. His whole word is centered around the human home. He only relates to prey in the human context and searches for prey from human objects.
I wonder if Denis the Menace is an example of the next stage in cat domestication. The stage where the cat loses his ability to catch real prey.
Cats that are classified as burglars are also called Klepto Cats or kleptomaniacs. Kleptomania is a compulsive desire to steal. These cats are obviously not kleptomaniacs. It is just putting a funny spin on what is really a distortion of real cat behavior.
We shouldn’t get serious about it but it does make me think if something is going wrong. Probably one way of preventing it is to play more with your cat but I sense that people don’t do this enough. I am guilty of that.