|Cats on a wall in Rovinj, Croatia|
What can they tell us?
There was an interesting story in the newspaper a couple of weeks ago. I think it proves that cats can tell us much.
It went something like this:
In the garden of a house in Salzburg there lived a cat. It was pretty well wild. It would let no person come near it.
And it never entered the house.
On the 29th of April 1986 that all changed.
On that day it rained in Salzburg.
Rain fell from the infamous Chernobyl cloud.
The cat carried her three kittens by the scruff of their necks into the house and placed them in a corner of the living room. From this day on she was a house cat.
She would not let her kittens go out of the house. Not even onto the terrace.
Two days later the people who lived in the house discovered the reason the cat had fetched the kittens into the house.
The outside world was contaminated with Chernobyl radiation.
The children of the house had been playing outside in the rain. One of them was taken ill. The doctor at the hospital found no sign of an infection.
Nobody knew what the strange illness was.
But the cat knew.
After the rain the cat refused to drink local farm milk.
Some pieces of the meat that people in the house were eating were given to the cat before being cooked. If the cat refused the meat the people in the house would also not eat it.
The cat was their first Geiger counter.
The people in the house then rented an actual Geiger counter.
The Geiger counter confirmed what the cat knew all along.
Whenever the cat refused to eat the meat, the people tested the meat with the Geiger counter and it invariably clicked loudly and rapidly.