This Cat Had a Very Close Call With a Rocket Attack in Israel

Like the people who live there, pets in Israel are experiencing stress from living under the constant threat of rocket attacks.

Video captured the moment one cat bounced out of the tree it had been perched in after the tree was hit by shrapnel on Sunday.

Here’s the moment as captured by a security camera in central Israel:

The Jerusalem Post reported that the metal shard that hit the tree was a remnant of an Israel Defense Force Iron Dome missile intercepting a rocket that had been launched from Gaza.

Look on the right: That's a cat scrambling out of a tree that's just been hit by shrapnel.
Look on the right: That’s a cat scrambling out of a tree that’s just been hit by shrapnel.

By contrast, another pet owner took a video of their remarkably nonchalant cat during a blaring air raid siren.

Mish Mish the cat lives in Beer Sheba in southern Israel (Image source: YouTube)
Mish Mish the cat lives in Beer Sheba in southern Israel. (Image source: YouTube)

The orange cat, Mish Mish (Hebrew for “apricot”), at first appears to be focusing on the sound of the siren that rises and falls. Perched high on a kitchen ledge, he looks momentarily startled when booms are heard outside but doesn’t move an inch to crouch or seek cover.

After some 30 seconds, it’s apparently time for a cat bath, and he begins licking himself.

Mish Mish started cleaning his coat during the siren. (Image source: YouTube)
Mish Mish started cleaning his coat during the siren. (Image source: YouTube)

When the siren ends, he looks around, then starts sniffing the ledge. Could a crumb have been left? Is his owner going to reward him with a well-deserved post-siren treat?

Mish Mish’s owner wrote on YouTube that they live in the southern Israeli city of Beer Sheba and that the boom sounds were rockets crashing as well as mid-air rocket interceptions by Iron Dome.

The Israeli news site Mako posted a story featuring the various ways in which pets have been reacting to the sirens, with some experiencing difficulty sleeping, others whimpering and reports of some running away.

Veterinarian Dr. Lili Raviv told Mako that she has received calls about dogs who are shaking nonstop and others who won’t stop following their owners around the house.

“They experience it [stress] at higher levels than us, because of their sharp senses. They sometimes hear the sirens before us. Many times dog owners say the dog ran to the shelter before they [the owner] heard the siren,” Raviv said.

Israel’s Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals extended an invitation to residents of southern Israel to house their pets at their shelter in Tel Aviv, which has been impacted less by rocket attacks.

Last week, the Ramat Gan Zoological Park posted video of adult elephants crowding around baby elephants to create a physical barrier to protect them during a siren.