- Also called cat and rat. a children’s game in which players in a circle keep a player from moving into or out of the circle and permit a second player to move into or out of the circle to escape the pursuing first player.
- Western U.S. tick-tack-toe(def 1).
- play cat and mouse, to engage in a gamelike relationship in which evasion and pursuit are used: They played cat and mouse for a while before she consented to go out with him.
- play cat and mouse with,
- to toy or trifle with.
- to use strategy on one’s opponent, especially while waiting to strike: The detective played cat and mouse with the suspect.