I hesitate using this title, knowing how many cat lovers there are out there (me being one of them), but it will make sense if you would please just read on:

I sell insurance, all kinds of insurance, including auto insurance to families.  As time goes by, the children in the families grow up and drive.  A daughter in one of my families had an accident just after obtaining her drivers’ license and this is what happened:

 She lives in the Pacific Northwest and it was winter so, of course, it was raining and dark.  Her family lives in the country and she was by herself, driving home from a school function.  The road was a two lane and it has many curves with fairly deep ditches on either side.  There were no other cars on the road when she went around one of those curves and in her lights, sitting in the middle of the road, was a cat.

She swerved to avoid the cat, went off of the road, into the ditch.  Her air bags diploid, the front end of the car was wrecked, she suffered lasting head and neck injuries……..and the cat, we presume, was fine.

 After telling me her story, making sure her claim was being processed and she was out of danger, the next thing I said was “next time, kill the cat”.  As hard as that was for me to say and her to hear, it is how I felt and feel.  Nothing is more important than her health and welfare. No kitty, doggie, opossum, raccoon, no little critter is more important.   There was also a financial cost to the family of a sizeable deductible.

 A story in the Seattle Times, dated July 14, 2011 is another example:

“Duck rescue on I-5 causes accident” A woman, driving on I-5 saw duck and ducklings on the shoulder of the freeway.  She “parked on the freeway’s right shoulder and began chasing the ducks.”  “Police said the woman walked onto the right southbound lane to get cars to stop.”  Her duck herding “caused a semi-tractor trailer to swerve into her car, blocking three lanes, the State Patrol said.”  “As much as we all love animals, citizens should not stop and attempt to corral animals on the freeway,” said Trooper Keith Leary.  “In this case, we are lucky there are no injuries.  This could have easily been a fatal collision.”

 You hate to say it or think it, but next time kill the cat, drive by the ducks, be safe and careful out there.

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