Image by: Alexas Fotos 


It’s another hot sunny day in LA, the City of the Angeles. Today started out as ordinary as any other day. But in the blink of an eye, all that changed. My lazy summer day turned into a work-from-home assignment. “The Case of the Purloined Purina” landed in my lap. What’s more, this time the perp had broken a handcrafted ceramic bowl while busting into a 20 lb., bag of cat food. He was wanted for vandalism and B & E (Breaking and Entering). Though I could negate the vandalism charge for breaking the ceramic bowl. True it was handmade by a friend but truth be told, it was as ugly as homemade sin. But the B & E was a different story. After entering into the bag and trying to eat his way through it, he left a trail of evidence scattered throughout the floor. He had fled the scene of the crime. Well, it was my job as the ‘Defective Detective’, to find him and bring him to justice.

                  Image by Skorchanov                                                            


I have to be a detective, I live with four cats. Therefore I constantly need to figure out who done it and why?  And sometimes, when it happened and where? Case in point, a few months ago, I decided to paint two dining room chairs. I  painted them outdoors and let them dry before bringing them inside. I only painted the back and legs. When I bought the chair inside I noticed an errant paint drop. I swabbed a rag with mineral spirits and rubbed on the spot till it disappeared. I stepped away for a minute to wet a towel and wipe away the residue. It only took a minute. However, when I returned I saw a cat. He wasn’t near the chair so I shrugged it off.


The next morning I stepped in something squishy.  Never a good way to start the day. Not surprisingly, no cat was nearby. Finding regurgitated food is nothing new. I have one cat ‘Nibbler’ who gobbles up food so fast that he doesn’t bother chewing it and of course, afterward, tosses it up. But an hour later I heard barfing and ran into the room in time to see ‘Budda’ tossing up his breakfast. Budda’s rarely done that. But a case can also be made that whenever I change their diets they’re sometimes unable to keep food down until they become accustomed to it. But this was different. He continued barfing and looked lethargic. Wait a minute, I remembered he was the cat I saw in the room. Had he put his paws on the painted chair? I couldn’t take the chance he’d been poisoned. Although It was late night I took him to an emergency animal clinic. They said he probably had put his paws on the mineral spirits since they look slightly inflamed. It wasn’t  life-threatening, but they gave him some meds .  I carefully watched him because he could still develop a respiratory condition. But he didn’t and trust me, he’s fine. But like I said, sometimes Who and why are not enough. You gotta figure out the where and when.

                         Image by: Alexas Fotos   

                                                 PET DETECTIVE STRUGGLES

So who, why, when, where are questions every pet detective aka multiple pet owner, struggles to answer. I know where it happened, I know when it happened. As to the why, the perpetrator (perp’s) a well-fed cat. I know this because they’re all well fed and tipping the scales. As to who? Who do the clues point to? We know somebody ate their way through a bag of food. In-any-case, I return to the scene of the crime. Somewhere there’s a clue.



I look at the evidence. A light bulb goes off, I’ve an idea.  I approach each of the four suspects. For-one-thing, they’ve all got rap sheets. They’re all previous offenders. “Nibbler” or “Nibbles” also known as “Rat” because of his gray and white coloring and small stature.  While the smallest of the perps, also the most energetic and voted most likely to wind up behind bars. “Shadow or Monkie” aka “Scardey Cat” but also named “Pyscho Cat” by other family members. “Fat Albert” aka, “FA” (like “Heffa”) but also known as “Licky Kitty”, or “Fat Kat”. So named for his goat-like tendency to eat anything. “Butta” aka “Butterball” and “Big Boy”. He could easily subdue the other three cats or for that matter, a water buffalo simply by sitting on them. He’s also the sweetest, most charming and, disarming of the four. But which one did it? I put all four cats through the test I’d contrived. I fervently hoped it would work. Too many times these guys have gotten away with mis-deeds because of that old adage. “There’s safety in numbers”. But finally, this time my ploy worked.  The proof was undeniable, he’d given himself away, I’ve got him! “Nibbler” did it! Case Closed!  

                          “Nibbler” Image by: Sandra Moses                                                     


I’ve laid out all the clues how do you think I caught him? I know you got this but if you don’t feel like guessing? The answer is at the bottom of this article. I’m the Defective Detective, always on call and I hope you enjoyed the second story in my series of three.

Soon to be published (like next week July 13, 2020) are my two new Remembrance Books. One written for Kids “Remember When Max Swiped That Pork Chop Off Uncle Ted’s Plate?” A book of fanciful humorous anecdotes, poems, and stories that remember pets. But “Remember When Butta Stuffed His Big Butt into That Tiny Box?” is the adult version of a book of humorous anecdotes, poems and, stories that remember pets and pet owners. Look for both books on Amazon, facebook, my website, and ETSY at  


Answer to Question: How do you Think I Caught Him? I gathered some of the spilled food and put it before each of the four cats. They all ate it except for the one who had previously tried to eat himself into a coma. Fittingly enough, “Nibbler” who never, ever turns down food, wouldn’t even nibble at it! In fact, if it were possible for a cat to turn green at the sight of food, this one did! It was a fitting end to the “Case of the Purloined Purina”.

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