I don’t have any pets at the moment. It wouldn’t be fair on the animal because I’m out six (sometimes seven) days a week, currently at random times. There was a pond in the garden with some really big goldfish, but two vicious winters finished them all off and I filled in the pond. It’s now a memorial fish grave.
Many people like the company of cats and dogs. There have been regular reports of dog attacks to the extent that the drones are almost as scared of dogs as they are of smokers, and yet I have never met anyone who was attacked by a dog.
The nearest experience I have involved an Alsatian who lived between my house and the pub in Wales. Their front garden had a wall around it, about four feet high, and an iron gate. That dog watched out for unsuspecting people. Once you were wise to it, you’d see the top of a hairy head and two eyes peering over the wall. When you were a few houses away from that garden, the dog vanished.
Just as you passed the gate, the dog would run at it, barking. Then, once it had scared the crap out of you, it would jauntily stroll away and I swear the bugger was laughing. That wasn’t a vicious dog. That was a dog with a twisted sense of humour. Must have been something in the water where I grew up.
Anyway, the persistent reports of dog attacks are putting people off getting one. So they get cats instead. Well, even a seriously mad cat can be beaten off by most people. Sure, they are armed with teeth, four sets of sharp claws and a bad attitude but they are small. If it’s busy shredding your hand you can pick it up and whack it against something. So cat attacks aren’t going to make the news very often.
The removal of dogs as companion animals is well under way – and let’s not forget the idiotic proclamation that second hand smoke harms pets so smokers will be banned from having any anyway – and now it’s time to get rid of your cats too. The process has just begun and they are making use of the badger scare this time round.
Let’s ignore the 9000 cases of human tuberculosis last year and concentrate on four people who might have caught bovine tuberculosis from their cats. Or who might have caught it somewhere else and then given it to their cats. The Public Health mob have already decided how the disease is transmitted from cows to badgers to cats to humans so there is a helpful graphic in the article.
Cats fighting badgers? Really? I know which one my money would be on.
I would have expected dogs to be a greater risk since they can’t resist rolling in cowshit, sniffing it and even touching its warm, steamy goodness with their tongues. Which they then use to slap your face. Any sign of dogs passing on tuberculosis? Any mention of the possibility? Nope.
The drones are already responding as directed –
Kristof, London, United Kingdom,
Cats are disgusting and carry lots of diseases.
Thanatos, London, United Kingdom,
Roundup the cats in the area and incinerate them. It’s the only way. Feminist cat ladies are going to be the death of us.
Pretty much the same things they’ve said about smokers, fat people, drinkers and anyone else they’ve been told to hate. Cat owners, welcome to Denormalisation Club.
Some commenters have seen where it’s going, so there is hope. This one has multiple outcomes.
It pushes back objections to the badger cull. “They are killing your cats – and you!”
It nicely distracts from all those new cases of human TB, brought in by immigrants from places that don’t have the inoculation.
It starts the process of getting rid of an irksome thing that is cheering up drone life. If they have pets they are distracted from their daily drudgery and that will not do.
It keeps people scared, and scared people want someone to save them from the scary thing. Forget Batman or Superman. They can’t make it, sorry. Still, not to worry, The Busybodies will rush to your rescue. All you have to do is… exactly what you are told.
Oh, and just in case the drones shrug off a mere four cases in one spot, there is the inevitable cliffhanger –
Six were put down or have died, two have survived, but one, an 18-month-old tabby called Milhouse, has run away.
One of them is on the loose! This is classic B-movie horror stuff. There is an outbreak, contained quickly, but one infected creature has gone missing. Where is it? What is it doing? Who is it infecting? Is it the one making friends with your own cat while sitting on the garden fence? The opening bars of Bach’s Toccata and Fugue in D minor would surely be fitting here. Even the conductor is watching out for Milhouse the Disease Cat.
Four people have contracted bovine TB. Two are ‘latent’ which means they test positive but have no symptoms. Maybe the vaccine against the human version works on the bovine one too, perhaps the non-latent ones were’t vaccinated? We aren’t told.
This outbreak, in epidemiological terms, is what scientists refer to as ‘fuck all’. It’s like the scare about necrotising fasciitis a few years back. A very nasty infection indeed but the tally was eight cases in one year. And yet everyone thought they were going to get it.
Give it credit, it is a well constructed scare story this time. They’ve taken more care over this one than they usually do
I need a new short story to give away free. The free ones are ads for the paid ones. I need something plausible enough to be scary.
I think I might pinch this idea. But not with cats. That’s been done now.