Sunday, May 07, 2017

Stray Cats and Wax Bullets

In my long association with firearms and ammunition, I've come into the knowledge that some fof then are very accurate.  I've got a couple of rifles that shoot with surgical precision.  I've got a Ruger Mak II, that when I do my part, it places the little .22 bullet exactly whee I want it.  Every shooter has a couple of those guns in his memory.

Wax bullets ain't like that.  The standard for sighted fire is 1.5 inches at 21 feet, and that's with a pristinely  clean bore.  But, wax bullets do have a purpose.  They're generally non-lethal, much like a paintball.  They'll sting, they'll leave a whelp, and they will put an eye out, so we're careful with them.  You still have to be careful with them.

Belle and I feed a couple of cats.  They keep the mice nervous, and we like them, so we tolerate them.  But, they are outdoor cats.   Occasionally, a stray will show up to enjoy the larder that we provide for our cats, but we try to discourage the homeless foragers.  We've found that wax bullets tend to send a message.  Being kind souls we don't want to hurt any living thing needlessly.  The wax bullets we use tend to shatter when they hit concrete, so a wax bullet at the feet of a stray cat showers him with wax shrapnel and normally lights a fire under him, reminding him of another appointment.  He tends to depart without formal good-byes.

But, wax bullets ain't accurate.  They tend to group loosely.  Which leads to a story about a white stray that showed up last week.    He was getting bolder, and showing himself more frequently, and on Friday we "scatted" him a couple of times.  But, he persisted.  So, on the third "scat", I sent a wax bullet out to punctuate the denial.  I sent it toward his feet, but was astounded to see fur fly off his right hip.  The impact spun him around, and he departed post-haste. Even grandson Zachary, who saw the shot, commented. "Oooh, that had to hurt."

But, that shot bothered me.  I don't want to hurt any living thing needlessly, and that bullet had to hurt.  That white cat crossed my mind several times yesterday, and I wondered if I had caused any lasting physical damage.

This morning, I walked out to get the morning paper and noticed a white flash, a blur across the front yard.  I watched him depart, cross the road and into the woods across the street.  That cat ain't hurt, but his boldness has diminished considerably.  He got the message, and I don't believe that he'll challenge me again in my own backyard.


mostly cajun said...

My first rifle was a Lee-Enfield No. 4 Mk1. the fact that I had Dad buy it for me at Gibsons for $21.95 should tell you how long ago that was.

I found that primed cases could have theri necks stuck into a block of Gulfwax - the stuff Mom used for sealing her home-made jellies - and then twisted, leaving a plug of wax in the neck that was accurate enough to hold 'minute-of-chicken' for those hens who needed lessons in staying off Grandma's front porch at five or ten yards.

Never permanently damaged a hen, but it did ruffle some feathers.


Goatwhiskers said...

You done good!

Joe Mama said...

You literally "waxed his a$$"

Old NFO said...

Joe beat me to it, and sometimes you DO have to get a bit more pointed in your 'denial' of assumed rights... :-)

thinkingman said...

Have to register less than mixed feelings about your solution, which , though less than immediately lethal,is perfectly capable of maiming and cosigning your feline victims to a slow death. Let me explain.
First off, I am a gun guy. Got started with a Rem 572 .22 pump while a teen. Was quickly allowed use of a Colt Trooper MK III and learned a bit with a LOT of .38 special wadcutter reloads. I was as a child, raised in a home were pet cats where present without exception. Pet dogs, too. It fell to me to bury a number of them at the end of their lives, being the oldest male offspring among my parent's children.
Your wax bullets can easily break the bones in a cats feet, front or back, essentially crippling them; escaping harm ( dogs, a**hat people, traffic, other cats who recognize injuries as weakness ) and obtaining food/water near impossible. Wax bullets can easily blind an eye, leaving a gaping portal for infection and death, can break teeth-ever eat with broken teeth? Yes, break ribs too. Contuse a kidney, cause bleeds in the brain, ...have you thought this out at all? Lets just say, I USED TO be a fan, you arrogant blow hard. Pull your head out of your butt, and THINK. Animal cruelty is not your right. ( YES, I DO eat meat, and have intentionally killed deer while hunting them, with single rounds of buckshot in each case )

Anonymous said...

I disagree thinking man