The cat can change quite radically when on its own, particularly if it thinks no one is watching. It reminds one of the badger, nicknamed the clown of the night, as it pursues ends known only to itself. Constantly watchful, reacting to the slightest sound, the cat explores the terrain inch by inch, even if it knows it well already, for the cat believes things may have changed since it was last there and it is right.
Under the cat’s nose is a new, unknown insect, the wind has covered the ground in dead leaves and the rain has made new grass grow. Almost silent in the house, the cat can become noisy in the open air: calling to a female in season or merely letting other cats know he is there on his territory (the cat sprays the four comers of its territory like a dog, to mark it against intruders).
Or it may also be warning or offering to fight some other imprudent creature. The noise then turns into a menacing growl, it snarls and shows its teeth and the ears either prick up or flatten against the head. And sometimes the cat will choose a tall tree from which it can keep a look out and spring on the unwanted visitor.
Out of doors everything interests the cat. Up on its hind legs it tries to catch anything that flies by -maybe a butterfly or just a feather fallen from a bird. If it is feeling safe, it will take the opportunity to really stretch out on the ground and have a sleep. In the house there is not always a huge bed available, and a cushion has its limitations after all! There are friends to be met outside, too: the next door cat for instance is an accepted pal and there are trees to sharpen the claws on.
The cat knows what happens if it tries doing that to the furniture! And perhaps the proud alley cat pities the Persian, a prisoner of its own beautiful coat, or the Abyssinian, victim of its own beauty, the Chartreuse dreaming of impossible forays, or the American Curl who, in the outside world, might be ashamed of its strange ears. .., To be a house cat, with guaranteed board and lodging, meals served on a plate and a clean bed to sleep in, has its attractions. But to be able to combine this life with hours of liberty -what more could a cat ask?