When we lived in Boston, a mockingbird used to sit on the rail of our stoop and shout imprecations at the two dogs and the cat, Big Guy. It made them crazy. They wanted that bird so bad.


One fateful day, I was walking the dogs. Mockingbird was perched on the wire over our head, yelling at us. Then he flew down to the garden, perhaps to refuel with a seed or two. Divot, the Norwich Terrier, lunged into the garden (it was one of those stretchy leads). There was a flutter, another flutter, a chomp, chomp.

Divot emerged from the garden, the mockingbird in her smiling jaws. She passed the bird to her partner, Pagan, the big hairy hound (PBGV or Petit Basset Griffon Vendeen) as if they had been practicing for years.

Together, like the thoroughbreds they were, they trotted homeward where Big Guy was clinging to the screen door, apparently aware of all the events that had transpired. Meanwhile, I was trying to wrench the bird from Pagan’s jaws before we went into the house where Big Guy was waiting to get his jaws around the prize.

Garry Kaity Divot RiverBend

Here ye oh Mockingbirds! This is a cautionary tale for mouthy birds. Don’t taunt the dogs. Or the cats. They may be smarter than you think.

Categories: Anecdote, Cats, dogs, Humor, Pets, Photography, Terriers

Tags: , , , , ,

32 replies

  1. Feeling sorry for that chirpy bird. Dogs cannot be blamed fully as they were tempted to do so. The basic instincts cannot be neglected for long. The foolish soul had to pay the price for being over confident.


  2. Those dogs were just doing their business. Obviously, they were very good at it too.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. We don’t have mockingbirds here in New Zealand. I had a cat once that used to kill birds regularly and somehow managed to sneak them inside. This seemed to happen when I was out. So I used to come home to a trail of bird feathers through the house and one very proud looking cat wanting praise from me. Mice would scare him but he was a great bird catcher – mostly blackbirds.


    • My Siamese was a big bird slayer. I would find the feet and feathers. I really hated it, but worse was when he brought in a live, terrified bird that would fly madly around the house with me trying to trap it and put it outside. None of the cats has ever shown any interest in mice, but the terriers love killing vermin. They consider it their job and I appreciate it.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. We had a mockingbird just outside my window in Mississippi and it was soooo annoying because they have a wide range of calls and they’re all loud! My cat, Mister, would sit at the window and chitter (you know the noise cats make at birds they can’t reach) at the silly thing for hours. I think a feral cat — there was a whole pride of ’em around campus — finally got this mockingbird because it disappeared one day. Ah blessed relief.


    • People don’t understand. If they’ve never experienced how annoying a mockingbird can be when he decides to target you or your pets, it’s hard to believe. They are relentless, noisy, and aggressivly obnoxious. No bird ever asked to be killed more than this one did. Stupid bird.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. We have a birddog, a Weimaraner. She is spoiled rotten and a couch potato, a daddy girl who is lazy as she can be, until there is a bird outside. Then her instincts kick in and she points toward the bird, like I would be blind. Occasionally she gets one, brings it to me. The bird is never harmed. Birddogs have soft lips, meaning they transport the birds pulling their lips over the teeth so they don’t harm them. One day she got an Opossum baby, brought it to me and dropped it in front on my feet. The Baby was dead, so I went inside, got a shoebox and scolded the dog. Walked outside with the shoebox, the Opossum was gone. Yep, they play dead, I learned it that day. The dog got a Hamburger steak because I scolded her :-).

    Liked by 1 person

  6. We have a bunny who lives under the bush in front of the house. She makes a habit of sunning herself right outside the front window, where Cody has full view of her but can’t actually get to her. I’d hate to think what would happen if Cody ever managed to sneak out the front door.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I think the dogs would have not been so eager to get that bird had the bird not declared war on the animals in the house. I don’t know if it was a territorial dispute or harsh words had been exchanged involving mothers and combat boots. Whatever it was, there were some strong feelings on both sides. The bird should have stayed on his wire. He was so into taunting the dogs (and cat), he forgot about their teeth.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. great story- but for the poor Mockingbird 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  8. So what’s a mockingbird in German? Had a quick look and after consultation with Mr. Swiss came to the conclusion that it is actually a type of thrush (in german known as Sing or Spottdrossel) and we do not have them where we live. I have never actually seen a normal thrush here. Oh and my felines are now jealous and want one as well.

    Liked by 2 people

    • It is the “Spottdrossed” and can be heard in the North of Germany (Ruhrgebiet und in der Umgebung von Bremen). I know that, because I walked to library around 20 years ago. I wanted to know more about the Mockingbird. Although didn’t understand why the book “To kill a Mockinbird” was translated into “Wer die Nachtigal stoert”, because it just didn’t make any sense. Learned about the birds, but never found an explanation for the weird translation.


      • Danke für die Erklärung. I told Mr. Swiss it says Spottdrossel in Wikipedia, but he is not the birdman of Alcatraz, could not explain more. Good point about the book To kill a Mockinbird, which really has nothing to to with a Nachtigal. Mein deutsch ist hauptsachlich Schweizertütsch nach 48 Jahre hier.


        • Ach du liebe Guete, Du sprichst Deutsch. Ich bin hier gerade am verzweifeln. Ich suche nach einem Samen fuer Salat und kann es nicht finden. Vermutlich mache ich bei der Uebersetzung fehler. so meine Frage nun, wie wuerdest Du Feldsalat uebersetzen…sorry if it’s a bother.

          Liked by 1 person

          • Das scheint ein Problem zu sein für viele deutschsprechende, die wohnen in ein andere Land. Wir Schweizer sagen “Nusslersalat”. Probiere die Ausdruck “lamb’s lettuce”. Die lateinische Ausdruck wäre Valerianella. Viel Glück. Sonst stehe ich gerne zu Verfügung mit deutsche Probleme, zwar mein schriftliches deutsch ist absolut nicht Fehlerfrei, aber ich verstehe nach 48 Jahren in der Schweiz.

            Liked by 1 person

    • Mockingbirds can sing beautifully, but this one was YELLING at the dogs and cat. It was some kind of feud. Normally, all our animals were locked in the house. The mockingbird would sit on the railing right outside the door and squawk at the dogs and cat. It incited them to … well … kill. They didn’t go after any other birds. Just THAT bird. Foolish bird could have stayed out of the way. He just tempted fate and lost.

      Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you. Much has changed since then and it was just 8 years ago.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Dang, signed in and still lost the comment.
        Yes, much has changed and a great deal in your lives. Garry has blossomed and your tutelage and encouragement has been a big part of that. I believe you have learned to pass on some of your responsibilities…..not so bad, is it? I, an outgoing, always doing something type person, have become basically a hermit on top of Bull Mountain, LOL! Here is hoping we can all help Garry to WANT to write his life story as it will be a real doozie and I, personally cannot wait to read it. Hope you buried the bird or had a cremation or something. Love hearing from you Mar. Hugs to you both……….KEITH


        • I had to bury the poor bird because our terrier seemed able to find that body no matter how far into the woods I carried it. That little Norwich had a nose like a bloodhound and was a great little hunter. Better than many of the hounds we’ve had.

          As we have gotten older, the number of people with whom we have contact diminishes. I think this happens to everyone, but it is one of the sadder aspects of getting older. It is hard to lose loved ones and friends and harder still to make new friends.


Talk to me!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Story Board

News Stories

Covert Novelist

Just another WordPress site

The Small Dog

Life from the Tail End

Cee's Chronic Illness Sisterhood

Peer support and hope for women with Chronic Illness and their support team.

Salted Caramel

Blogging, Motivation, Lifestyle and much more.

Sue Vincent's Daily Echo

Echoes of Life, Love and Laughter

Sarah's Attic Of Treasures

Making My Home A Haven is important to me. Sharing homemaking skills. Recipes and food. Bible Studies. This is a treasure chest of goodies. So take a seat. Have a glass of tea and enjoy. You will learn all about who I am.

Green Screen

The Environmental Movie Podcast


Crittering (noun) - the observation of critters in their natural habitat.

Works by Martha Kennedy

Historical Fiction, Memoir and Paintings

bushboys world

Photos of my world and other stuff I hope you will enjoy too. Photos taken with Canon PowershotSX70HS Photos can be purchased.


Independent views from someone who offers some historical context


Official Site of Speaker, Historian and Author Sean Munger


I use the best, I use the rest

This, That, and The Other

Random musings on life, society, and politics.

My Blog

Just another WordPress.com site

I'm a Writer, Yes, I Am!

Martha Ann Kennedy's Blog, Copyright 2013-2020, all rights reserved to the author/artist

National Day Calendar

Fun, unusual and forgotten designations on our calendar.

Cee's Photo Challenges

Teaching the art of composition for photography.

Trent's World (the Blog)

Random Ramblings and Reviews from Trent P. McDonald

Views from the Edge

To See More Clearly

serial monography: forgottenman's ruminations

wandering discourse, pedantic rant, self-indulgent drivel, languorous polemic, grammarian's bête noire, poesy encroachment approaching bombast, unintended subtext in otherwise intentional context, unorthodox unorthodoxy, self-inflected rodomontade, …

draliman on life

Because sometimes life just makes you stop and think

The English Professor at Large

Posts about old Hollywood, current concerns



The Day After

Musings, Photography, Writing, and More



Chronicles of an Anglo Swiss

Welcome to the Anglo Swiss World


The Fun Side Of Science

%d bloggers like this: