My cat Gandalf can’t usually can’t focus on one thing for more that ten seconds, but today I watched him eat ants out of the carpet for at least twenty minutes. I say “at least” because I have no idea how long he’d been doing that before I walked into the living room. He was staring intently into the carpet, and would occasionally shove his nose into it and pull it out chewing on something. At first I thought he caught a spider but there seemed to be nothing there. Closer inspection revealed trails of ants crawling over the carpet.
Some of them started crawling into his fur, and he’d twitch suddenly and start licking his fur really intently. He soon figured out that he could trap ants in his fur and started rolling around on the ground to collect as many as he could and then lick them out. He alternated between doing this and eating them straight out of the carpet for twenty minutes. Every now and then he’d pause and sit perfectly still, the stillest I’ve ever seen him, he wouldn’t even move his tail, and just stare at the carpet waiting for more ants to come in. I think he was convinced he could hear the ants.
When our older cat Sugarface wandered over to see what all the fuss was about, Gandalf got all defensive and threw himself on the ground where the ants were, just so Sugarface couldn’t have any. They were his ants, he found them fair and square. Sugarface didn’t understand but he was jealous of all the attention Gandalf was getting so he sniffed around the carpet a little bit like Gandalf was doing, and came running back over to me and looked up at me all proud like “Look! I can look at the carpet too!” And then he bit my stomach because I started watching Gandalf again.