Winsted-Lester Prairie Journal, Jan. 17, 2000

Spot's scent-sational new friend


One day, Mother Cat and her kittens went out for a walk.

The kittens said, "Mother, we want to go into the woods. It is so much fun to go there. We can play in the trees. Please, Mother, can we?"

"All right," Mother Cat said, "But the forest is a very big place and you must stay together or you could get lost."

The kittens were very excited. They gathered around their mother and she counted to make sure they were all there.

"Now, where is Spot?" Mother Cat asked.

"Here I am, Mother," Spot answered.

"You stay right here with the rest of us," his mother told him. "Now, follow me."

When they got into the woods, Mother Cat said, "I am very tired. You kittens can play together by this big tree while I take a short nap."

The kittens had such a good time. They jumped up in the tree. Then, they jumped down out of the tree. They chased each other around and around.

Before long, they heard their mother calling them and they ran over to her.

Mother counted all of her kittens.

"Spot is missing," Mother Cat said, "Where did he go this time?"

The kittens looked around and then, they looked at each other.

"He was just here playing with us a minute ago," Snowball, Spot's little sister, said.

"I must go and look for him," Mother said. "You all stay right here until I come back."

Mother Cat went deeper into the woods. It was starting to get dark out and she was getting worried.

"Spot, Spot where are you?" Mother Cat called.

Finally, Spot came running. And he was not alone.

"Mother, this is my new friend," Spot said. "He has many sisters and brothers and they all look just like him. We have been playing together and having a very good time."

Mother Cat looked at her son's new friend.

"Oh, my goodness, he has stripes," Mother Cat said. "Hurry, Spot, we must go back and find your brothers and sisters."

When the family was all together again, Mother Cat explained to Spot and the rest of the kittens that sometimes its not a good idea to play with members of the skunk family.

"They can smell very bad," Mother Cat said. "And if they decide they don't like you, they can make you smell very bad, too."

"Oh, Mother," Spot said, "My new friends are very nice. They didn't do anything to me.

"You were just lucky," Mother Cat said. "Maybe they thought you were a skunk, just like them."

The kittens all started to laugh.

"From now on, we will give you a new name. We will call you Skunk," Snowball said to her brother.

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