Tularemia can affect your cat — and you

Here’s a question for you “owners” of outdoor cats: How often have you opened your door to leave your house, only to be surprised with a dead mouse or other small creature waiting for you on the step?

This was not uncommon at my previous house, where our cat Josephine had a big pasture where she honed her hunting skills. Every so often she would leave us this kind of “love offering,” sometimes accompanied by her proud-looking presence.

Josephine’s offerings were a manifestation of her maternal instincts. If she had youngsters of her own, she would bring them these captured critters so they could practice their hunting techniques. Because I had surgically removed any possibility of her having a feline family of her own, her human family was her substitute.

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