Now that’s one heck of a clever mouse, you can barely see him hiding there on that wheel. I think even if it was a human trying to catch that mouse, he probably would’ve outsmarted them too.
Why Cats Play With Their Food
This classic idiom of the cat and mouse game has been around since 1675. According to Webster means “a conveyed action including consistent pursuit, near captures, and repeated escape.” Meaning that, even in the idiom it’s been well known that mice are often able to outsmart and get away from the cat.
Why is that? Many times if you watch a cat in pursuit of a mouse, bird, or any other smaller prey it almost looks like their purposely playing with their food. They let it get away for just a moment, before they go in for the kill.
A study was done many years back to see if this was in fact the case. Interestingly enough, they found that it was. They found that the reason cats like to play with their food was not just for a darn good time, but instead a way for them to protect themselves from serious injury.
As the cats main way of killing an animal is to break its spinal cord with a strong bite to the neck. The cat will sometimes let go of it and risk it getting away; only for them to recapture it again with a better grip than they had previously.
As their main weapon, their teeth, is so close to many of their important features i.e. their eyes and the rest of their face. Cats are more careful to let these animals close enough to bite or scratch them in areas of their body that is more prone to infection or injury. Therefore, the more a cat plays with his food the better chance that the he has of wearing it down and tiring it out, so that it won’t come back to bite him when he’s going in for the kill.
Too bad for this cat that he didn’t anticipate the mouse being so clever as to hide in the wheel, where he would more than likely never be found.