cat and dog

cat and dog n [EDD (at cat sb.1 4.(2); cf cat n 3a, dog n B21] chiefly Pittsburgh PA

= tipcat n; also, a base-running game using the same implements.

1883 Daily Post (Pittsburgh PA) 20 Mar [4]/1, They were playing “cat and dog,” and young Woods knocked the “tip” into Meixner’s yard. 1896 Washingtonian 4.17.[6] WA, The boys played “cat and dog” last week instead of baseball because they had no ball. 1930 Pittsburgh Post–Gaz. (PA) 28 June [6]/5, “Don’t you remember when the boys played it in the streets? There was a piece of wood with sharp ends and they’d nip this with a stick and then go to the goal for a point.” We always called it “cat and dog” or just “cattie.” 1944 Pittsburgh Press (PA) 9 June sec 1 10/7, While playing “cat-and-dog” . . William Doerr, 11, . . was struck on the right eye with the small piece of wood. 1963 Keystone Folkl. Qrly. 8.116 Pittsburgh PA, Referring to the game of Cat and Dog—I remember that game very well. . . We made our cat about five inches long, including a taper for 1½ inches at one end. . . The dog was about two feet long. . . In order to play the game, we scooped out a hole in the ground, long enough to hold all but the tapered end of the cat, which projected one way or the other, according to which direction you intended to bat it. After the tapered end of the cat (which would be above the surface of the ground) was struck with the bat, it would really bounce up to a level where we could hit it, and the hard wood of both cat and dog would cause the former to travel quite a distance. This was measured by how many lengths of the dog. The longest distance won for the batter. Ibid 118 Pittsburgh PA, The most popular game of Cat and Dog was played by only two or three players. . . The other game was when there were more than three players and was an attempt to imitate the game of baseball. In this game the player made the same attempt from a circle and if he did not hit the cat he was out. Three outs were allowed if teams were playing, in each inning. If the player succeeded in hitting the cat he would run to first base. (Depending upon the number of players there were one, two or three bases). If a fielder caught the cat it was a caught fly (ball) and the player was out. If the fielder picked the cat up from the ground and threw it into the circle, and it stayed in the circle, the player was out. If the player was not out he made as many bases as he could before the cat which was thrown touched the ground. Ibid 120 Johnstown PA, One game we played . . was cat and dog. [T]he game was played by putting the the smaller piece of wood in about a 3 foot circle, then hitting it on the end with the long stick, or dog, to make it fly into the air. While it was in the air, you hit it again as far as you could. But there were one or more boys out there to catch this cat in the air. The boy who caught the cat and ran it back to the circle, or base without getting whacked with the dog, which was in the batter’s possession, then it was his turn to hit the cat.